GeneSprout Initiative hosted a series of webinars at the end of December 2020. In these webinars we introduced the topics of plant breeding, domestication and genome editing to a general audience.
What was the webinar series about?
What did the food on our plates look like hundreds of years ago? Do plants need to see a doctor when they get sick? What do plants eat and why do we eat them? We encounter plant science on a daily basis, yet we rarely stop and wonder about this. In the webinar series we explained how new plant breeding technologies can help in providing everyone with enough good quality food while making agriculture more sustainable in our rapidly changing world.
If you are interested have a look to the recordings below. If you want to learn more about the background behind these webinars, have a look at this page.
Plant breeding and its history
Plant health and their medicine
Plants for human health
European Researchers Night
GeneSprout Initiative has took part in the European Researchers Night the 27th of November. The event entitled “The Future of Tomorrow” was a roundtable discussion among young adults who inspire the new generations to care about the environment, especially in the midst of climate change. We have discussed the future of food, the ethical issue of new plant breeding techniques such as genome editing and what’s next to achieve a more sustainable global food chain!
Een techniek met enorme potentie
Our board member Juriaan Rienstra wrote an article about gene editing in agriculture for the Dutch NVOX magazine. NVOX is a magazine for high school teachers in the Netherlands. The purpose of the article was to give an expert insight into the big advantages gene editing offers plant breeders.
For members of NVON, the article is free. LINK
Current Topics in Biotechnology
GeneSprout Initiative is hosting a session for MSc students at the WUR following the course ‘Current Topics in Plant Biotechnology’, where we aim to inspire other young researchers that their voice matters, and that it is important that we learn to communicate our science to the general public.
Together with EuropaBio, Genesprout Initiative hosted a dialogue between young plant scientists from Europe and overseas called “Plant genome editing in Europe: a young researchers perspective”. Their views on genome editing in their research context, as well as their views for the future of genome editing in Europe in light of the 2018 ECJ ruling and the currently ongoing Commission study on New Genomic techniques has been discussed.
Genesprout Initiative was asked by the Slow Food Youth Network (SFYN) to present about the use of new plant breeding techniques in agriculture.
This event was considered by the audience, a group with mixed backgrounds in studies, as incredibly interesting, shedding a light on the science behind genome editing.
Thanks again to the SFYN for inviting us! And thanks to Charlotte van den Arend to make the picture for the SFYN.
GeneSprout Initiative gave at the ‘Current Topics In Biotechnology’ course organized by plant biotechnology master students at Wageningen University.
The topic of this evening was ‘Entrepreneurship’
Our goal here was to ask students to find a cause they are passionate about and inspire them to start their very own initiative, just like we did!
The GeneSprout Initiative gave a talk at the COST Action PlantED conference on Plant Genome Editing in Novi Sad, Serbia. This international conference brought together people from all over the world that are working on the technical, social and political impacts of New plant breeding techniques.
GeneSprout Initiative hosted a one day workshop called “Plants and Patents” in collaboration with the Graduate School of Experimental Plant Sciences (EPS). The workshop was given by the Patent office of the Netherlands Enterprise Agency and the Corporate Value creation office of WUR.
Some key topics covered were:
If allowed in Europe can plants edited using CRISPR be patented? What are the pros/cons of patents over breeders rights?
How can you protect your own ideas or research as a young scientist? and who owns your work?
We organised a side-event at the prestigious CRISPR Con (2019). Our side-event was called CRISPR for Us: A Chat with Young Professionals. We hosted a panel discussion consisting of young professionals, and openly reflected what it means to be a young scientist working on and with CRISPR-related research.
The event was well-received amongst the many attendants of the conference.
GeneSprout Initiative hosted an event last May in cooperation with the “Pint of Science” festival at Wageningen. GeneSprout Initiative gave a presentation answering questions like:
What is CRISPR? How does it compare to more traditional methods of breeding?
An open discussion followed to explore the feelings of the public regarding CRISPR and its (potential) use in agriculture.
The GeneSprout Initiative was featured in an article about about the legislation of GMO’s in the Wageningen World Magazine, the global magazine of Wageningen University alumni. Read about our reasons to start this initiative and our goals!
The article can be read online here. You will also be redirected by clicking the thumbnail of the magazine to the right.