Driving engagement, innovation and impact in plant science

Posted on: 09/01/2018

A KTN event on 27 March will bring together plant scientists, growers and producers, food manufacturing companies, social researchers and innovators.


LATEST UPDATE: Full event programme now available here.

Plant science plays a crucial role in many of the challenges facing the modern world including food security, environmental sustainability and climate change.

Through the development of innovative solutions, plant science can help drive productivity and sustainability across the bioeconomy. Yet if these novel solutions are going to be adopted, scientists need to develop technologies that are both fit-for-purpose in the real world and that are accepted by the public. To achieve this, we need to develop better interdisciplinary approaches, so we can properly understand the needs and motivations of end-users (consumers, public and private organisations) and multiple stakeholders.

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KTN, working in partnership with the University of Sheffield and the UK Plant Science Federation (UK PSF), is organising an event on “Driving engagement, innovation and impact in plant science‚ on 27th March in Sheffield. The aim of this event is to begin to explore these interdisciplinary approaches and map out how most effectively to engage with the public and consumers, and take into account interests of various stakeholders.

This interactive workshop will bring together plant scientists, growers and producers, food manufacturing companies, social researchers and innovators to explore novel approaches and learning from other sectors, and thus facilitate more effective co-design, knowledge exchange and public understanding.

The event will cover impact studies of Social Science in action in plant science and will include a “Question Time Panel” and debates on key topics of plant science.

KTN will also be launching its pre-competitive R&D vision for the agricultural sector at the event, which includes specific chapters relating to “Improving social awareness and proliferation of required skills”.

Confirmed speakers include Professsor Rick Mumford, Deputy Director of the joint Fera-Newcastle University Institute for Agri-food Research & Innovation (IAFRI) and Dr Martin Clough, Head Product Biology & Project Management at Syngenta.

Professor Rick Mumford is chair of the UK Plant Sciences Federation, and he will present examples of development of new technologies for tree health & co-design, public engagement & perception and citizen science. Dr Martin Clough will speak about public-private engagement and the development of the pre-competitive R&D vision for the agricultural sector.

Registrations are now open – you can find out more here.


If you would like to discuss opportunities for innovation in agri-food you can contact KTN’s Agri-Food Team.


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