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Satellite meeting organised by Professor Guy Poppy, Professor Paul Jepson, Professor John Pickett CBE FRS and Dr Michael Birkett
This is a residential conference, which allows for increased discussion and networking. It is free to attend, however participants need to cover their accommodation and catering costs if required.
Attendance is by invitation only. When requesting an invitation, please provide the title of the meeting you are interested in attending, your name, affiliation and a summary of your interest in the subject.
Biographies of the organisers and key contributors are available below and you can also download the draft programme (PDF) . Recorded audio of the presentations will be available on this page after the event.
Participants are also encouraged to attend the related Discussion meeting Achieving food and environmental security – new approaches to close the gap which immediately precedes this event.
Enquiries: Contact the events team
Professor Guy Poppy, University of Southampton, UK
Guy Poppy gained his DPhil from Oxford University and conducts research in many areas relating to environmental and ecological sciences. He was the director of Biological Sciences at the University of Southampton and managed the move of this large school into a new £45 million Life Sciences Building in 2010. He is currently the University of Southampton’s Director of multidisciplinary research which involves directing 12 university strategic research groups addressing grand challenges as well as the university’s overall multidisciplinary strategy. His personal research portfolio is broad but involves leading a large multidisciplinary team researching ecosystem services with a particular focus on securing food supplies without affecting the quality of the environment. This includes projects in Africa, South Asia and South America where conservation versus agriculture is a major issue (see http://espa-assets.org/ ). He has regularly participated in the public understanding of science and is passionate about educating people and especially the next generation about science and the environment.
Professor Paul Jepson, Oregon State University, USA
Biography not yet available
Professor John Pickett CBE FRS, Rothamsted Research, UK
Professor John A Pickett is originally an organic chemist (BSc 1967, PhD 1971, DSc 1993) who has gained worldwide recognition, with many honours and awards to his name, for his investigations into volatile natural products that affect the behaviour and development of animals and other organisms (semiochemicals). He is a world authority on semiochemicals in insect behaviour and plays a leading rôle in the move away from the traditional use of wide-spectrum pesticides to more precise control through compounds targeted against specific pests at critical stages in their life cycles. Recent practical successes include a programme for controlling stem borer pests and striga weeds in Africa, where thousands of subsistence farmers have already adopted systems for exploiting the natural product chemicals of certain companion crops. In 1976, John moved to Rothamsted Research to lead a team working on new methods of pest control. He headed the Department of Biological Chemistry there from 1984-2010, and now holds the first Michael Elliott Distinguished Research Fellowship at Rothamsted. As well as fulfilling this prestigious new role, he continues to lead research into the field of chemical ecology.
Dr Michael Birkett, Rothamsted Research, UK
Dr Michael A Birkett, originally a chemist (BSc Biochemistry & Biological Chemistry 1990, PhD Organic Chemistry 1994), has gained international recognition for his investigations into the identity and function of semiochemicals (natural products) that affect the behaviour and development of animals and other organisms. Since he joined Rothamsted in 1994, he has played a leading role in the identification of novel molecular structures and the deployment of semiochemicals for plant, human and livestock protection. Together with Professor Pickett, he has pioneered the use of small lipophilic molecules (SLMs) as elicitors of defence in crop plants and the sustainable production of semiochemicals using green chemistry approaches. He is now Principal Investigator in Chemical Ecology, where he leads chemical ecology research, and is Deputy Head of the Department of Biological Chemistry and Crop Protection. In 2010, he became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC).
Professor Kim Anderson, Oregon State University, USA
Dr Anderson is a professor in the Department of Environmental and Molecular Toxicology and Director of the Food Safety and Environmental Stewardship program both at Oregon State University. Dr Anderson’s research focuses on environmental exposure of contaminants, contaminant mixtures and development of novel bio-analytical technologies for assessing biological relevance in multi-contaminant environments. Dr Anderson is the project leader for a long-term research project funded by the Superfund Research Program, NIEHS. Dr Anderson has worked with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) to develop a new program of international scope, to implement bio-analytical technologies to conduct environmental assessment for use in setting of protective standards for human and environmental health. Current research is also focused on further development of a passive sampling device structured as a wristband, which has the potential to greatly expand the possibilities for developing quantitative measures of exposures in humans. Dr Anderson has more than 50 referred articles, and holds 4 patents. Dr Anderson has served on numerous panels and committees, to name a few, the Board of Directors for the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry North America and Expert Advisory Panel for the Canadian Network of Toxicology Centres.
Dr John Antle, Oregon State University, USA
John M Antle is a professor in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics at Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon, and a University Fellow at Resources for the Future, Washington, DC; and previously a professor at the University of California, Davis, and Montana State University. He received the PhD in Economics from the University of Chicago in 1980. He has served as a senior staff economist for the President's Council of Economic Advisers in Washington, DC (1989-90); as a member of the National Research Council's Board on Agriculture (1991‑97); and was a lead and contributing author to the IPCC third and fourth assessment reports. He is a Fellow and past President of the American Agricultural Economics Association. His current research focuses on the sustainability of agricultural systems in industrialized and developing countries, including climate change impacts, adaptation and mitigation; assessment of environmental and social impacts of agricultural technologies; and geologic carbon sequestration.
Professor Roger Beachy, Danforth Plant Science Center, USA
Dr Roger Beachy was appointed by President Obama as the first Director of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture in the US Department of Agriculture, serving from 2009 to mid-2011. He was founding president of the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, held professorial appointments at The Scripps Research Institute and at Washington University in St. Louis. In 1986 Beachy and colleagues developed the first genetically modified food crop, a tomato modified for resistance to virus disease. Beachy was elected to the US National Academy of Sciences and is a Wolf Prize Laureate. He is a Fellow of the AAAS, the American Academy of Microbiology, Foreign Associate of the National Academy of Science India, the Indian National Science Academy, and The Third World Academy of Sciences. He received the Bank of Delaware's Commonwealth Award for Science and Industry and the Ruth Allen Award from the American Phytopathological Society, among other awards.
Professor Toby Bruce, Rothamsted Research, UK
Professor Toby Bruce is interested in the impact of crop pests on food security. The aim of his research is to improve crop protection by using chemical ecology and plant science to develop innovative approaches to manage insects. He conducts research on the chemical ecology of host location in insects and on alarm and sex pheromone signals. He developed the theory of how insects can use ratios of ubiquitous volatiles for host location. As well as advancing these fundamental aspects, he is interested in utilising semiochemicals for insect pest management at the field level. As a direct result of his research and development work, pheromone traps for orange wheat blossom midge are commercially available to wheat growers in the UK. He is involved in collaborative work with researchers in the EU, India and Africa. He joined Rothamsted in 2000 and has a background in Biology and a PhD in Chemical Ecology.
Professor Rhys Green, University of Cambridge, UK
Rhys Green does research in animal population ecology and applies it to solving biodiversity conservation problems. He is currently Honorary Professor of Conservation Science, Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge and Principal Research Biologist at Royal Society for the Protection of Birds. His research interests are studies of interactions between birds and agricultural management, interactions between birds and forest management, global monitoring of trends in biodiversity, global patterns in land use change and their impacts on biodiversity, effects of climate change on geographical range and population processes, habitat and food selection by birds, population processes in threatened birds, practical management of habitats and manipulation of demographic rates of threatened birds, modelling effects of disturbance on birds. Recent personal studies include estimating the effects of the toxic veterinary drug diclofenac on population trends of Asian vultures, the effects of lead contamination on California condors and modelling outcomes for biodiversity of future approaches to increasing global agricultural production.
Dr Andy Jarvis, CIAT- International Center for Tropical Agriculture, Colombia
Dr Andy Jarvis is the Director of the Decision and Policy Analysis Area in the International Centre for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) and is a Theme Leader on the CGIAR Research Program for Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security, based in Cali, Colombia. Dr Jarvis has 10 years experience of scientific research in developing countries to support the goals of alleviating poverty and protecting essential ecosystem services. His research has focused on the use of spatial analysis and environmental modeling to address issues such as agricultural biodiversity conservation, adaptation to climate change, and maintenance of ecosystem services. Over the past ten years Dr Jarvis has published over 50 articles, book chapters or books, with over 20 of these in peer-reviewed articles published in international journals. Dr Jarvis has also worked as a consultant to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) on developing climate change strategies to conserve agricultural biodiversity, and been a consultant on a variety of projects for the European Union, Global Environment Facility amongst others. In 2003 Dr Jarvis won the Crop Science Society of America (CSSA) C-8 Genetic Resources award for best research paper stemming from his work on conservation prioritization research for wild peanuts in Latin America, and in 2009 received the prestigious Ebbe Nielsen award for innovative research in bioinformatics and biosystematics.
Professor Zeyaur Khan, ICIPE, Kenya
Professor Zeyaur R Khan, a distinguished international professional entomologist and agricultural scientist, has dedicated his research career to advancing the science and practice of entomology and applying chemical and behavioral ecology, plant-plant communication and insect-plant interactions to improve agricultural production to combat poverty and food insecurity in Africa. Professor Khan is a Principal Scientist and Program Leader with the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (icipe) (www.icipe.org), Nairobi, Kenya, and a Visiting Professor of Entomology at Cornell University, Ithaca, NY. Recently, icipe has awarded Prof. Khan its highest honour, naming him the first Thomas Risley Odhiambo Distinguished Research Fellow in recognition of his outstanding achievements in the advancement of agricultural science. In 2010, the Entomological Society of America (ESA) honored Prof. Khan with triple awards—Fellow of ESA, Nan-Yao Su Award for Creativity and Innovation in Entomology, and Distinguished Scientist Award. The Third World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) has named Prof. Khan as a co-winner of 2012 TWAS Prize in Agriculture for his discovery and wide-scale implementation of the Push-Pull Technology ̶ a pro-poor innovation for enhancing food security and environmental sustainability in Africa
Dr Charles Midega, International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology, Kenya
Dr Charles Midega, a 2010 Marquis Who’s Who in the World biographee, is a senior research scientist at the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (icipe), Kenya. He holds an MSc (2002) and PhD (2005) in Agricultural Entomology from Kenyatta University (Kenya), and two postdoctoral fellowships, from icipe (Kenya) and Kyushu University (Japan). His primary research interest is on building ecological frameworks for management of insect pests in smallholder cropping systems. This is achieved through understanding the underlying mechanisms of plant-herbivore-natural enemy interactions with a view to establishing a sustainable use of biodiversity in pest management and conservation of the same, as well as resource-base of the cropping systems. He is directly involved in implementation of the innovative push-pull technology (www.push-pull.net) in East Africa while adapting it to different agro-ecologies, cereal systems and farmer profiles. He also evaluates the technology’s impacts on ecological integrity of the agro-ecosystems, in addition to his chemical ecology research on plant to plant communication and plant-insect interactions, and their exploitation in managing pests of cereal crops and cotton. He has extensive experience in development of IPM approaches, biodiversity evaluation and sustainable exploitation in different ecosystems, tritrophic interactions in both cropping and forest systems, and chemical ecology, having been involved in similar work in East Africa, South Africa, Japan and Brazil. He is also an expert in agricultural development, including sustainable intensification of agricultural systems. He has authored/co-authored over 60 scientific papers in refereed journals, book chapters, books and educational materials in these fields.
Dr Kelvin Peh, University of Cambridge, UK
Dr Kelvin Peh is a post-doc (AXA Research Fellow) at the University of Cambridge. His interests range from forest ecology to urban wildlife in respect to diversity and distribution. He is interested in all areas of wildlife-human conflicts and wildlife ecology in human-dominated landscapes, and in the application of his research results to the conservation/management of biological resources. Currently, he is working on the ecosystem service assessment project to develop and test tools for rapidly assessing the net impact of site-based conservation on the provision of ecosystem services.
This project runs in collaboration with the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, BirdLife International, Anglia Ruskin University and UNEP-World Conservation Monitoring Centre. The output of the project will be a toolkit that helps users with limited capacity (technical knowledge, time) and resources (money, manpower) to rapidly measure ecosystem services at site-scale. Ultimately, this toolkit should be able to help decision-makers to understand the consequences of destruction and degradation of natural habitats.
Dr Mike Robson, Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, Italy
Mike Robson was one of the contributing authors on the landmark FAO publication Save and Grow; a policy makers guideto the intensification of smallholder production (2011). Mike currently leads a project within FAO helping governments foster more sustainable approaches to crop production in Africa, and in South East Asia. The project aims to develop methods, norms and benchmarks to help assess the sustainability of different pathways. Generally, FAO’s role is to support the adoption (and adaptation) of more sustainable approaches at large scale. This involves addressing issues of environmental, social and economic sustainability, using policies, incentives, targeted public sector investments, etc. In addition, Mike has specific experience in cassava and banana (plantain) production systems in East and Central Africa, staple cropping systems where transboundary pests and disease are a major constraint to production. He has also worked on improving quality production for export in Cambodia (looking at combined food safety, animal health and plant health issues), as well as the use of modern ICT in pest and disease surveillance (in India, and East Africa). Prior to joining FAO in 1996, he worked for 7 years in management consulting with Coopers & Lybrand in London; he has a PhD in economics and a first degree in chemistry.
Professor Jetse Stoorvogel, Wageningen University, The Netherlands
Jetse Stoorvogel is associate professor Soil Geography and Landscape at Wageningen University (the Netherlands). The chair group Soil Geography and Landscape aims to contribute to the sustainable soil management in a landscape context. He received a PhD in 1995 from Wageningen University on the role of Geographical Information Systems as a tool to explore land characteristics and land use in integrated assessments. Between 1995 and 2000 he was fellow of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences and Arts (KNAW) studying the impact of spatial variability on the evaluation of land and land use. In 2002 he was appointed member of the Young Academy of the KNWAW that focuses on interdisciplinarity, science policy, and the interface between science and society. His current research focuses on the development of integrated assessment models with specific emphasis on the role of bio-physical simulation models (including both crop growth and environmental impact) and the acquisition of environmental datasets. His research focuses particularly on Africa and Latin America.
Dr Kamil Witek, The Sainsbury Laboratory, UK
Dr Kamil Witek is a post-doctoral scientist at The Sainsbury Laboratory in Norwich. His main area of interest is utilising wild relatives of crop species as a reservoir of resistance against economically important plant pathogens. He has spent most of his scientific career working on potato. At first, during his PhD, he studied resistance of potato against viruses; recently, he is exploring wild Solanum species as a source of resistance against Phytophthora ssp, mainly P infestans.
He is a co-author of recently concluded three-year-long GM potato field trial, located in Norwich. By exposing potato plants containing a functional resistance gene from other Solanum to variable climatic conditions and high infection pressure, it has demonstrated the effectiveness of GM approach for obtaining durable field resistance against P infestans.
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