Visiting Professor Seminar: Iain Donnison

Professor Iain Donnison

Professor Iain Donnison

Institute of Biological, Environmental & Rural Sciences (IBERS)  |  Aberystwyth University, UK

Climate Change Response Strategies in Agriculture

I lead the Agricultural & Environmental Sciences Theme in IBERS, Aberystwyth University which comprises approximately 160 staff (including 50 academic staff and 7 Professors), an annual research income of £12 million, and annually recruits 100 undergraduate students. I am also the founding Director of the pan Wales BEACON Biorefining Centre (of ~80 staff at Aberystwyth, Bangor and Swansea Universities) which was created in 2010 and since 2016 is a member of BioPilots, the alliance of open access biorefining centres in the UK. In 2016, I established an Aberystwyth University Interdisciplinary Centre for the Bioeconomy which seeks to extend BEACON with academics from the departments of law, business and geography at Aberystwyth University­­­­­­. I am currently in the process of “spinning in” BEACON into the Aberystwyth Innovation & Enterprise Campus (AIEC), a £40 million investment by BBSRC, Welsh Government and Aberystwyth University. A significant part of the evidence base for demand for AIEC comes from BEACON and this will ensure that there is a legacy once the current funding comes to an end and after my 12 years of involvement with the project.

I have also co-ordinated, managed and led a Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) strategic Programme (~15 staff) from 2007-2017 on biorenewables. Scientific achievements include my involvement in the elucidation of the chlorophyll breakdown pathway in land plants, the identification of one of Mendel’s seven originally identified traits in pea, the defining of energy crop ideotypes, and the mapping of flowering time and other traits in Miscanthus to geography.


Tagged in Agricultural science, Agriculture Food and Wine, Waite campus, For researchers