Dr Martin J Hodson took his degree in Botany and doctorate in plant physiology from Swansea University. He then undertook postdoctoral research at Bangor University, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, York University in Toronto and Birmingham University. In 1989, Martin settled at Oxford Brookes University where he rose to Principal Lecturer. He is now Visiting Researcher at Brookes, Associate Member of the Institute of Human Sciences at Oxford University and Operations Director for the John Ray Initiative. Martin's research focuses on plant silica and phytoliths. That has taken him into all sorts of interesting areas: archaeology, palaeoclimatology, biogeochemistry, cancer research, agriculture and food science.