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Experts join forces on plant science

University experts are leading a plant science consortium that will seek to tackle key challenges facing society.

Edinburgh Plant Science brings together some 600 experts from eight institutions.

Participants hope that by pooling ideas and facilities, they can pursue new avenues of research.

They also hope to engage collectively with policymakers and the wider public.

World challenges

We are passionate about plants and want to help ensure people understand their importance to our planet.

Dr Karen HallidayDirector, Edinburgh Plant Science

Plant science could play a key role in addressing challenges such as increased demand for food for a growing global population.

It could contribute to environmental sustainability, help prepare for the impact of extreme weather on food production, and the emergence of novel pests.

Crops may also have a role to play in improving the nutritional quality of farmed food, and in development of biomass as a feedstock.

Wider impact

Taking part in Edinburgh Plant Science (EPS) are the University of Edinburgh, Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Forest Research, Heriot-Watt University, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Science and Advice for Scottish Agriculture, and Scotland’s Rural College.

EPS will also offer consultancy to industry, and seek to improve education and training in plant science, including recruiting postgraduate students.

Edinburgh has the largest concentration of plant scientists in Scotland, if not the UK, and we have a great opportunity to harness wide-ranging expertise to solving problems on an international scale.

Dr Karen HallidayDirector, Edinburgh Plant Science