SCItalks: an exciting line-up of speakers for this spring

26 February 2021

Human health, climate change, crop protection, and air quality are just some of the many challenges that the world is facing. If you are interested in finding out how chemistry is impacting on these pressing issues, and more, then the new SCItalks series is for you.

SCItalks is a platform for anyone who is interested to hear from some of the chemistry sector’s most prominent and influential people, and put questions to them, too. SCItalks has an exciting line-up of speakers who will share their perspectives on issues ranging from treatments for dementia through to how the chemical industry can thrive in the emerging landscape.

‘Chemistry is ubiquitous and underpinning, but there is still a mystique and concern about the impact of many chemicals on health and the environment. SCItalks will address both aspects by organising talks on key strategic areas of chemistry given by speakers renowned for their enthusiasm and accessibility,’ said David Bott, SCI’s Head of Innovation.

The start of 2021 has been one of cautious optimism as the role-out of vaccination programs take place, and we all look forward to the post pandemic recovery. However, the aim is now to be better prepared, and recent advances in data availability (both epidemiological and molecular) along with mathematical models of disease spread, now offer the potential to provide predictive, quantitative analysis of alternative disease control and treatment strategies.

To help us explore these developments we are delighted to have Professor Neil Ferguson OBE FMedSci, Faculty of Medicine, School of Public Health, Imperial College London, who is part of the UK’s Imperial College COVID-19 response team, join us to share his thoughts on Infectious disease: epidemiological processes and factors, on 24 March 16:00-17:00 GMT. The breadth of Professor Ferguson’s research interests reflects his belief that comparative analysis of different host-pathogen systems can provide powerful insights into the population processes common to many infectious diseases.

Following this we are excited to announce that Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell, University of Oxford, will be joining us to explain how the presence of water, alcohol, carbon dioxide and other small molecules, which are now regularly observed in space are giving us a lot of information about the physical conditions there. Dame Jocelyn, who inadvertently discovered pulsars as a graduate student in radio astronomy at Cambridge University, will use her talk: Interstellar Chemistry, on 28 April 16:00-17:00 GMT, to discuss how these molecules are detected, how it is thought they formed, and where the elements initially came from.

Life in the locked-down world has probably made many people more aware of images, as screens have become the connection to the world beyond the locations we find ourselves in. However, how true are the colours in the images when compared with the natural world? Professor Anya Hurlbert MD PhD, Newcastle University, will discuss the essence of what it means to see. In her talk: True blues and real reds: how human vision colours the world, on 26 May 16:00-17:00 GMT, Anya Hurlbert, Professor of Visual Neuroscience and Dean of Advancement at New Castle University, will explain how the science of the mind ultimately holds the key to the colours we see.

All the talks are online and free to attend, but please make sure that you register. More details can be found by following the links.

SCI is building an exciting programme of talks through 2021, so please visit the SCI events page to keep up to date and register for up coming events.

Notes to editors:

About SCI: where science meets business

SCI is a unique global multidisciplinary network connecting scientists, business people, students and other key players involved in science-based innovation. SCI promotes innovation via its international network to advance the commercial application of science into industry for the benefit of society.

SCI works across crucial sectors as diverse as food and bio-renewables, water, environment, energy, materials and manufacturing, and health and wellbeing.

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