EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Agri-Food Robotics: AgriFoRwArdS - Garry Clawson

Garry Clawson

  • University of Cambridge in collaboration with Dyson Farming

Research Interests

Garry’s research interests include, distributed ledger technologies, digital supply chains, robotics, agricultural automation.

ORCiD: 0000-0003-0315-4147.

Publications

Presentations

  • International Computer Music Conference 2022: Towards Open Source Hardware Robotic Woodwind: an Internal Duct Flute Player
  • UK Robotics and Autonomous Systems Conference 2022: Blockchain Crop Assurance and Localisation
  • 23rd Towards Autonomous Robotics Systems (TAROS) Conference 2022: Blockchain Crop Assurance and Localisation
  • IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration (SII) Conference 2023: Applications of Distributed Ledger Technologies in Robotics

Posters

  • AgriFoRwArdS CDT Annual Conference 2022: Applications of Distributed Ledger Technologies in Robotics.
  • UK Robotics and Autonomous Systems Conference 2022: SUB-SPARC: Investigation of Imperfect Teachers.

Prizes

  • Best Poster Award at the AgriFoRwArdS CDT Annual Conference 2022
  • Best Paper Award at the 5th UK Robotics and Autonomous Systems Conference 2022
  • IMechE Whitworth Senior Scholarship Award 2022

Other Activities and Outputs

  • Member of the AgriFoRwArdS CDT Advisory Board
  • Member of the AgriFoRwArdS CDT EDI Panel
  • Cohort 3 representative on AgriFoRwArdS CDT Student Panel
  • Panel member for the November 2021 AgriFoRwArdS Seminar Series with Prof Dionysis Bochtis, watch here.
  • Panel member for the February 2022 AgriFoRwArdS Seminar Series with Dr Mark Ryan, watch here.
  • Panel member for the May 2022 AgriFoRwArdS Seminar Series with Ali Capper, National Farmers Union, watch here.
  • Panel member for the June 2022 AgriFoRwArdS Seminar Series with Prof Megan Povey, University of Leeds, watch here.
  • Chaired the March 2022 AgriFoRwArdS Seminar Series with Ayse Kucukyilmaz, watch here.
  • Represented the CDT at the Douglas Bomford Trust bi-annual meeting (Mar 2022)
  • Represented the CDT at the school outreach University of Lincoln British Science Week event (Mar 2022)
  • Represented the CDT at the University of Lincoln, Boston College: Institute of Technology outreach event (June 2022)
  • Lead on the AgriFoRwArdS CDT student blog
  • Lead on the CDT/L-CAS submission for the UKRAS RoboLab Live 2022, watch here.

About me

Garry joined the Institute for Manufacturing (IfM), Industrial Resilience Research Group (IRRG) in 2022 as a PhD student under the supervision of Dr Mukesh Kumar focusing on digital supply chains within the agri-food sector.

Prior to joining the IfM, Garry had spent over two decades in the heavy manufacturing sector working within a variety of roles. Garry’s career began through a vocational route with a focus on production engineering; he then spent several years in process improvements supporting business cost initiatives and productivity programmes across the UK, MENA and Europe.

In 2021, after completing his BSc (Hons) in Computer Science, Garry was awarded a place on the AgriFoRwArdS Centre for Doctoral Training EPSRC programme, which specialises in Agri-Food Robotics – a high impact area – to support the development of solutions to the numerous challenges facing the agri-food sector such as population growth, climate change, political pressures affecting migration, population drift from rural to urban regions, and the demographics of an aging population.

Garry holds a BSc (Hons) in Computer Science and an MSc in Robotics and Autonomous Systems from the University of Lincoln. In 2022 Garry was a recipient of the IMechE Whitworth Senior Scholarship Award and Alec Dyson Studentship in Engineering supported by the Dyson Foundation. Garry’s research interests include distributed ledger technologies, digital supply chains, and robotics.

MSc Project

Applications of Distributed Ledger Technologies in Robotics

Increased farm level robotisation driven by the fourth agricultural revolution has focused research on distributed ledger technologies (DLT) to investigate how trust in robotics and autonomous systems can be enhanced through decentralised frameworks for decision making and consensus building. Applications in agri-tech, industrial, embedded, and multi-robot systems have seen some growth in the adoption of DLTs. However, implementations are currently ad-hoc and held back due to limited middleware availability and no standardised technology readiness level available to identify DLT maturity. This project aims to address this gap through the development of a novel Blockchain Readiness Level (BRL) and an associative middleware DLT bridge.

PhD Project

Designing Food Supply Chain for Nutritional Delivery and Traceability

More than 2 billion people do not have regular access to nutritious and sufficient food. In 2019 nearly 22% of children worldwide were estimated to suffer from some type of child malnutrition with over 340 million suffering form of micronutrient deficiencies. Traditionally our food supply chains have been designed to satisfy human hunger and taste. However, there is increasing demand coupled with sustainable development goals, to design food supply chains that deliver the right nutritional content to the end consumer.

Although over the last four decades the quantity and quality of food supply has increased for millions of people, this nutritional challenge still stands. Availability and affordability play a large role in how people modify their diets as well as stability of food supply, what domestic foods are available and access to trade. These are further impacted by supply chains that focus on delivering produce without the direct ability to identify, track or trace its nutritional content. The transformation of supply chain from product volume to product functionality offers one way to tackle this challenge. This will involve changes to farming practices, storage, transportation, and secondary processing, along with trace and track technologies.

This research focuses on nutritional delivery, traceability and security, and losses across the supply chain. It aims to explore the application of robotics, sensors, distributed systems, and supply chain digitisation to identify linkages between supply chain design (product, process and location) and nutrition losses (micro). Using nutrition as a data point the optimisation of supply chains to take into account product functionality as part of its digital journey opens up new ways of visualising the agri-food supply chain.

Garry’s PhD project is being carried out in collaboration with Dyson Farming, with primary supervision by Dr Mukesh Kumar.