My scientific career began at Rothamsted Experimental Station (now Rothamsted Research) in 1978 working with pioneers in soil microbial ecology and plant growth promoting root symbiotic mycorrhizal ecophysiology of crops. From 1987 to 2003, I worked at the University of Helsinki, Finland gaining a Ph.D and Docentship in forest soil microbiology. I went on to establish a forest microbiology research group at the Viikki Biocentre and was later awarded a 5-year Senior Research Fellowship (Academy of Finland). Between 2004-2005, I worked at the Macaulay Institute, Aberdeen as a Senior Scientist on forest soil food-web microbiology before taking up a Senior lectureship at MMU. I contributed to the successful RAE2008 submission, became a Reader in 2012 and was submitted to REF2014. Elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology in 2016.
I am qualified with a postgraduate teaching certificate (Academic Practice with merit) and teach soil and plant microbial ecology at all levels. Three undergraduate project students I have supervised have won the 'Environmental crop management' prize in the last four years and have gone on to Ph.D studentships and agricultural biotech companies. I have been successfully supervising Masters and Ph.D students since 1990 that have generated over 37 peer-reviewed papers in high impact journals.
Involved in soil ecology outreach as a Society of General Microbiology representative on the Sense about Science Plant Science Panel: http://www.senseaboutscience.org/pages/plant-science-expert-panel.html
Brearley, F.Q., Elliott, D.R., Iribar, A. & Sen, R. (2016). Arbuscular mycorrhizal community structure on co-existing tropical legume trees in French Guiana. Plant and Soil (in press).
Vázquez, M. A., Sen, R. & Soto, M. (2015). Physico-chemical and biological characteristics of compost from decentralised composting programmes. Bioresource Technology 198: 520-532.
Elliott, D.R., Caporn, S.J.M., Nwaishi, F., Nilsson, R.H, & Sen, R. (2015). Bacterial and fungal communities in a degraded ombrotrophic peatland undergoing natural and managed re-vegetation. PLoS ONE 10.1371/journal.pone.0124726
Sen, R. (2015). Micro-organisms, -biomes and -networks of Earth's living soils. Microbiology Today 42: 58-61.
Gange, A.C. & Sen, R. (2014). Mycorrhizae RHS The Garden 8: 46-48.
Elliott, D.R., Thomas, A. D., Hoon, S.R. & Sen, R (2014). Niche partitioning of bacterial communities in biological crusts and soils under grasses, shrubs and trees in the Kalahari. Biodiversity and Conservation 23: 1709-1733.
Veresoglou, S.D., Shaw, L. J., Hooker, J.E. and Sen, R. (2012). Arbuscular mycorrhizal modulation of diazotrophic and denitrifying microbial communities in the (mycor)-rhizosphere of Plantago lanceolata. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 58: 78-81.
Veresoglou, S.D., Sen, R., Mamolos, A.P. & Veresoglou, D.S. (2011). Plant species identity and arbuscular mycorrhizal status modulate potential nitrification rates in nitrogen-limited grassland soils. Journal of Ecology 99: 1339-1349.
Veresoglou, S.D., Voulgari, O.K. Sen, R. , Mamolos, A.P. & Veresoglou, D.S. (2011). Effects of nitrogen and phosphorus fertilization on soil pH-plant productivity relationships in two upland grasslands in northern Greece. Pedosphere 21: 750-752.
Veresoglou, S.D., Mamolos, A.P. Thornton, B., Voulgari, O. K., Sen, R. & Veresoglou, D.S. (2011). Medium-term fertilization of grassland plant communities masks plant species-linked effects on soil microbial community structure. Plant and Soil 344: 187-196.
Veresoglou, S.D., Shaw, L. J. & Sen, R. (2011). Glomus intraradices and Gigaspora margarita arbuscular mycorrhizal associations differentially affect nitrogen and potassium nutrition of Plantago lanceolata in a low fertility dune soil. Plant and Soil 340: 481-490.
Oddsdottir, E.S., Nielsen, C., Sen, R., Harding, S., Eilenberg, J. & Halldorsson, G. (2010). Distribution patterns of entomopathogenic fungi in soil and birch symbiotic ectomycorrhizal fungi across native woodland and degraded habitats in Iceland. Icelandic Agricultural Sciences 23: 37-49.
Oddsdottir, E.S., Eilenberg, J., Sen, R. Harding, S & Halldorsson, G. (2010). Early reduction of Otiorhynchus spp. larval root herbivory of Betula pubescens by beneficial soil fungi. Applied Soil Ecology 45: 168-174.
Abarenkov, K., Nilsson, H., Larsson K.-H., Alexander, I.J., Eberhardt, U, Erland, S, Høiland, K., Kjøller, R, Larsson, E.,Pennanen, T., Sen, R., Taylor, A.F.S., Tedersoo, L., Ursing, B.M., Vrålstad, T., Liimatainen, K., Peintner, U., Kõljalg, U. (2010).The UNITE database for molecular identification of fungi - recent updates and future perspectives. New Phytologist 186: 281-284.
Oddsdottir, E.S., Eilenberg, J., Sen, R. & Halldorsson, G. (2010). The effects of insect pathogenic soil fungi and ectomycorrhizal inoculation of birch seedlings on the survival of Otiorhyncus larvae. Agricultural and Forest Entomology 12: 319-324.
Heinonsalo, J. & Sen, R. (2007). Scots pine ectomycorrhizal fungal inoculum potential and dynamics in podzol-specific humus, eluvial and illuvial horizons one and four growth seasons after forest clear-cut logging. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 37: 404-414.
Kaparakis, G. & Sen, R. (2006). Bi-nucleate Rhizoctonia (Ceratorhiza spp.) induce adventitious root formation in hypocotyl cuttings of Pinus sylvestris L. Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research 21: 444-449.
Juuti, J., Jokela, S., Paulin, L., Timonen, S. & Sen, R. (2004). Suillus bovinus glutamine synthetase gene organisation, transcription and enzyme activities in the Scots pine mycorrhizosphere developed on forest humus. New Phytologist 164: 389-399
Kõljalg U., Larsson, K.-H., Abarenkov, K., Nilsson, H.R., Alexander, I.J., Eberhardt, U., Erland, S., Kjøller, R., Larsson, E., Pennanen, T., Sen, R., Taylor, A.F.S., Vrålstad, T., Tedersoo, L., & Ursing, B.M. (2005). UNITE - a database providing web-based methods for the molecular identification of ectomycorrhizal fungi. New Phytologist 166: 1063-1068
Moora, M., Öpik, M., Sen, R. & Zobel, M. (2004). Native arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities differentially influence the seedling performance of rare and common Pulsatilla spp. Functional Ecology 18: 554-562
Hoffland, E., Kuyper, T., Wallander, H., Plassard, C., Gorbushina, A., Haselwandter, K.,Holmström, S., Landeweert, R., Lundström, U., Rosling, A., Sen, R., Smits, M., van Hees, P. & van Breemen, N. (2004). The role of fungi in weathering. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 2: 258-264
Sen, R. (2003). The root-microbe-soil interface: new tools for sustainable plant production. New Phytologist 157: 391-394
Öpik, M., Moora, M., Liira, J., Kõljalg, U., Zobel, M. and Sen, R. (2003). Divergent arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities colonize roots of Pulsatilla spp. in boreal Scots pine forest and grassland soils. New Phytologist 160: 581-593