News from within the Partnership:
Funding received for improving photosynthesis to increase food and fuel production
Scientists in the UK (including from Plant Sciences Cambridge, Rothamsted and John Innes) and USA have been awarded £6.11M of funding to improve the process of photosynthesis. Four transatlantic research teams will look into ways to overcome limitations in photosynthesis which could then lead to ways of significantly increasing the yield of important crops for food production or sustainable bioenergy. Read more.
Nuffield Council on Bioethics publishes Report
Biofuels: ethical issues
The latest report from the Nuffield Council on Bioethics, Biofuels: ethical issues, can be accessed at: .
The report considers the ethical, social and policy issues raised by biofuels. The rapid adoption of biofuels has been driven by targets and other policy instruments, but first generation biofuels have been widely criticised. There are ongoing efforts to develop new biofuels that aim to avoid the problems of the past, and research into these new approaches should be supported. The report concludes that many biofuels policies fail to take account of important ethical principles, such as protecting human rights, environmental sustainability, climate change mitigation, just reward, and equitable distribution of costs and benefits. It sets out an ethical framework for both current and future biofuels production and makes a number of recommendations to policy makers.
Plant scientists to train in entrepreneurial skills for food security
The Biotechnology Young Entrepreneurs Scheme (YES) - a business plan competition for early career researchers - is pleased to announce a brand new workshop for plant, microbial and environmental scientists entering the scheme. These researchers will acquire the necessary skills to develop research in a commercial setting such that their science can be translated into products, processes and policies that will help avoid a future food security crisis and improve sustainability in the context of a changing environment.
The workshop will be run at Syngenta's Jealott's Hill International Research Centre near Bracknell and is a partnership between the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), the University of Nottingham Institute for Enterprise and Innovation (UNIEI), the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and Syngenta.
Applications close on 27 May 2011 and the workshop will be held in October. For more information, visit http://www.biotechnologyyes.co.uk/.
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