Lucy Greenhill


Research Fellow, Scottish Association for Marine Science


I am currently a Research Fellow on the MERIKA project (Marine Energy Research Innovation and Knowledge Accelerator). This EU FP7 Project runs from 2014 – 2017 and aims to establish a marine energy research and innovation hub in the University of the Highlands and Islands in Scotland.

Building on applied experience in the public sector (at the Joint Nature Conservation Committee) and the petroleum and renewable energy industries, I am developing research into coastal and marine socio-ecological systems to support integrated and holistic management of human activities. What is meant by 'sustainable development' and are we on a path that is appropriate to sustain sufficient resources for future generations? Can we reconcile 'sustainable economic growth' with environmental protection objectives?

My research uses social science research methods to explore visions of sustainable development, that can guide planning and management of industry activities. This includes investigating the social factors that influence progress towards sustainability, including scales of governance, and the role of stakeholders. I specifically focus on marine spatial planning as a mechanism for addressing issues of sustainability, through integration of social and environmental concerns and multiple policy objectives for sea areas.

I am part of a new social science group at SAMS (Centre for Society of the Sea) which has been established to acknowledge and address the need for inter—disciplinary and integrated research to address sustainability in coastal and marine areas).

Research Interests

  • Socio-ecological systems
  • Marine governance, planning and management
  • Sustainable development / sustainability
  • Social/political/environmental aspects of renewable energy policy and sector development


2006-2007  MSc Marine Resource Development and Protection. Heriot-Watt University

2000-2003  BSc Geology with Biology, University of Southampton


2012-2013   Renewable Energy Services Manager. SAMS Research Services Ltd ( SRSL)
2007-2012   Offshore Industries Advisor. Joint Nature Conservation Committee ( JNCC)
2004-2006   Spill Response Specialist. Oil Spill Response Ltd ( OSRL)


Understanding the potential for marine megafauna entanglement risk from renewable marine energy developments. / Benjamins, Steven; Harnois, Violette; Smith, Helen; Johanning, Lars; Greenhill, Lucy; Carter, Caroline; Wilson, Ben. Scottish Natural Heritage, 2014. 95 p.

What future for the energy-rich Scottish North? Changes in the economic landscape of the Highlands and Isles, and the rest of Scotland. / Graziano, Marcello; Billing, Suzannah-Lynn; Greenhill, Lucy. Sustainable Recovery? Rebalancing, Growth, and the Space Economy. Vol. 1 2014. ed. Seaford, UK : Regional Studies Association, 2014. p. 65-71.


T: +44 (0) 1631 559 379