Tag: collaboration

  • Small surprises and farmers in Oxford

    Uncategorized | Melanie Welham

    The start of a year is often a time for reflection on the previous 12 months and a look forward to the year ahead.

    Shortly before the Christmas break a request came through at short notice inviting me to meet with the Minister for Science and senior colleagues from the Ugandan government. The first surprise was that diaries worked. I was not sure what to expect as while we support some projects with links to Uganda, especially in the areas of animal and plant disease, they have not traditionally been a partner. And here was the second surprise – the 5-strong delegation were keen to learn more about UKRI, more about BBSRC and particularly our interests in the bioeconomy, which, with a different focus, they see as a major opportunity for development in Uganda. They were also very interested to understand how we fund research and innovation, as they are in the early stages of establishing their new Ministry. I very much enjoyed the discussions and at the end of the meeting had a huge sense of fulfilment; if I had in any way helped shape their thinking it was a meeting well worth the time and a satisfying, if surprising, way to round off a busy year. […]

  • Extreme weather…and food production

    Uncategorized | Melanie Welham

    Depending on your perspective you may have been relishing the recent spell of unusually hot and dry weather – if, on the other hand, you are one of the many farmers who have been struggling to combat the heat, drought and feed shortages your view is likely to be quite different. Whatever your thoughts on the ‘summer of 2018’, the extreme weather conditions highlight the importance of boosting the resilience of food production systems in the UK to help ensure food supply is maintained. […]

  • International collaboration, diversity and green tea chocolate

    Uncategorized | Melanie Welham

    I was fortunate to travel to Japan recently, first to Kyoto to attend the 14th Science and Technology in Society forum (STS forum) and then on to Tokyo for a series of visits and meetings.

    A key focus on the trip were a series of bi-lateral meetings with funding agencies (from around the globe) which Sir Mark Walport and I attended together. These meetings provided the opportunity to update colleagues on progress towards UK Research and Innovation and also emphasise the importance of international collaboration in maintaining excellence in research and innovation. […]