KEYS TO THE FUTURE: Plants and the Land
Friday, 13 May 2016 from 13:00 to 17:00 (BST)
San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
Keys to the future: Plants and the Land
Edinburgh Plant Science Student Network and the University of Edinburgh Plant Science Society are hosting a FREE event to showcase a variety of possible career routes for those with an interest in plants. If you are an undergraduate or postgraduate student or early in your career you are very welcome to join us for an inspiring afternoon where the invited speakers will talk about their fascinating careers. The speakers will cover a broad range of careers from academic research to industry to science communication and you will have the opportunity to ask questions and get useful advice in an informal environment.
Our scope is wide and people attending the event may be from diverse fields ranging from molecular biology and biochemistry to whole landscape and ecosystem management. Therefore the purpose of this event is to bring people together around a shared understanding of the vital role plants play in the world. We want to encourage people from different disciplines to talk to each other and to learn more about the huge potential of careers involving plants and the land.
The event will be held at King's Buildings, Edinburgh on the afternoon of 13th May 2016. It is not just for University of Edinburgh students. People from other institutions are strongly encouraged to attend.
The event is free but places are limited so please make sure to register.
Speakers so far include:
Dr John Kerr, Head of Seeds, Varieties and Pesticides, Senior Management Team, Science and Advice for Scottish Agriculture.
John currently heads a team of around sixty talented scientific and farm staff who work in the support of the farmed environment of Scotland. The functions he oversees include testing of seeds, testing of new varieties of crops, certification of seed crops for marketing, and testing of food and wildlife for pesticide residues. He also provides support to colleagues in the wider government in creating an appropriate regulatory framework for the trade and production of agricultural crops – particularly seed crops. He is the Chair of the UNECE specialised section for Seed Potatoes which is a body concerned with harmonising trade of seed potatoes through a shared global standard for trade. The group is also involved in capacity building work between participating countries.
Dr Linde Hess, Cereal Scientist working in industry with the Scotch Whisky Research Institute.
Linde’s research interests include: grain physiology, plant (eco)physiology, agronomy, starch chemistry, enzymology, NIR spectrometry modelling, flow cytometry, food security and climate change.
In her role as a cereal scientist, she helps to ensure a sustainable supply of raw materials for the distilling industry. To achieve this, she liaises with others in the cereal supply chain e.g. maltsters, plant breeders. She also contributes to multidisciplinary cereal research projects and collaborates with researchers at various UK plant research institutes.
Dr Max Coleman, Science Communicator at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.
Max is a Science Communicator at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. He gained a degree in botany and worked in nature conservation for several years. His interest in plants drew him back into academia and an MSc and PhD followed. His route into public engagement was through chance rather than by design. A job with Edinburgh City Council with a strong community engagement element was the experience that ultimately led to public engagement with botanical science.
Dr Naomi Nakayama, Principal Investigator at the Institute for Molecular Plant Sciences, Edinburgh.
Naomi is a research scientist at the Institute of Molecular Plant Science, Edinburgh, and the SynthSys Centre of Systems and Synthetic Biology, specialising in biomechanics and synthetic morphology. After gaining her PhD from Yale University, USA, Dr Nakayama undertook postdocs at the University of Bern, Switzerland, and the Ecole Normale Superieure de Lyon, France, before coming to the University of Edinburgh in 2013 as a Chancellor’s Fellow. She is currently a Royal Society University Research Fellow. Her group studies how plants are able to modify their construction and architecture according to their physical environment.
Dr Alistair Hamilton, Ecologist at Scotland’s Rural College.
Alistair’s research interests are in applied ecology, spatial mapping and analysis, and interdisciplinary approaches to problem solving. His applied ecology interests focus on management of extensive systems using grazing (domestic and wild herbivores) and burning as management tools. He pursued these interests in positions at the University of Edinburgh, Forest Research, the RSPB, and Monash University in Australia. He runs Muirburn (management fire) training events for SAC Consulting, teaching the theory and practice of fire management.
Professor Claire Halpin, Head of the Division of Plant Sciences at the University of Dundee.
Claire is a Professor of Plant Biology and Biotechnology. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and of the Royal Society of Biology. During her career she has worked as a teacher, and as a researcher in both industry and academia. Her current research focuses on two main areas, lignin biosynthesis and meiotic recombination, and she also maintains an active interest in enabling techniques for plant biotechnology