University of Portsmouth takes lead role in new plastic pollution publication

The University of Portsmouth, which is already leading the search for solutions to the global plastics crisis, is now playing a key role in a new academic journal focused on the growing problem.

Professor Steve Fletcher, Director of Revolution Plastics at University of Portsmouth, has been announced as the Editor in Chief of Cambridge Prisms: Plastics, which will be published by Cambridge University Press and devoted to finding solutions to plastic pollution.

The announcement cements the University of Portsmouth’s growing reputation as a centre of expertise on plastic pollution. Professor Fletcher will be joined on the publication editorial board by another University of Portsmouth colleague. Dr Fay Couceiro, who earlier this year set up the University of Portsmouth’s Microplastics Research Group, will be one of the five Senior Editors chosen from a field of global experts.

Meet Professor Steve Fletcher – Editor-in-Chief of Cambridge Prisms: Plastics

In this video from Cambridge University Press, Professor Steve Fletcher from the University of Portsmouth talks about his life’s work dedicated to addressing the challenges posed by plastic pollution.

View transcript

Prof Steve Fletcher, Editor-in-Chief of Cambridge Prisms: Plastics journal and Director of the Global Plastics Policy Centre at the University of Portsmouth:

The biggest challenge of my career today is probably when I left academia to join the UN Environment Program for around five years. I learned so much during that time about how to make research have traction in the policy space.

Hello. I’m Professor Steve Fletcher and I’m the Editor in Chief of Cambridge Prisms: Plastics and Director of the Global Plastics Policy Centre at the University of Portsmouth.

My specialization is plastics policy research in which I try to identify the factors that really drive effective policy that we can feed into live policymaking to really make a difference.

It’s hard to define the specific moments when I chose this career path, but I’ve always been really passionate and fascinated in how people and the planet interact with each other. I think that really drives my current career today and the work that I do trying to tackle the global plastics problem.

The global plastics crisis is one of the biggest challenges that the world faces plastic contributes to the three global problems that we’re facing: biodiversity loss, climate change and pollution.

And all of those things affect the economy affect people’s health and affect the planet. And without concerted action, we’re not going to make the difference that we need to resolve those challenges.

I’m really excited about Cambridge Prisms: Plastics because, for the first time, we’re going to have a journal that brings together the interdisciplinary study of all the subjects related to plastics into one place.

Professor Steve Fletcher said: “Never has the need for solutions to the global plastics crisis been so urgent. Systemic change and a globally coordinated approach are vital to bringing an end to plastic pollution. Our new journal will be pivotal in providing a platform for exploration, discussion and debate on how to solve plastic pollution.”

“Academia, industry, governments, NGO’s, pressure groups and citizens all need to work together to tackle this emergency. The role of academia in providing possible solutions is critical, but this needs to draw on a range of disciplines from science to the arts. The answer to the plastic problem is not just going to be found in scientific labs, but also in such areas as the performing arts, citizen science projects and policy analysis.”

Our new journal will be pivotal in providing a platform for exploration, discussion and debate on how to solve plastic pollution.

Dr Jessica Jones, Publisher and Senior Scientific Editor of Cambridge Prisms, said: “Cambridge Prisms: Plastics will accelerate discovery across disciplines by publishing the latest cross-cutting plastics research on the connections between plastics, people, and nature. The journal launches at a critical time for plastics research with an ever-increasing global need for implementing solutions to tackle the current plastics crisis. We are delighted to welcome our full international Editorial Board to an incredibly important title in the Cambridge Prisms journal portfolio.”

Launching in May 2023, Cambridge Prisms: Plastics will be a new gold standard and open access journal. It will map the full field of plastics research with an interdisciplinary and wide-reaching scope. The journal will cover science and policy topics that underpin connections between plastics, human and environmental health, environmental justice, and human rights.

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