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Fieldwork in the Yucatan during the Covid-19 pandemic – An interview with Karla G. Hernandez-Aguilar

Karla G. Hernandez-Aguilar is a PhD candidate on the Palaeobenchmarking Resilient Agricultural Systems (PalaeoRAS) project. Photograph above: colour diversity in a maize variety called Gallito (little rooster) harvested in the same milpa plot in Xoy community in Southern Yucatan – by Karla G. Hernandez-Aguilar When was your first research trip to the Yucatan and how did it go? My first …

Take control of your career #1: ‘The Osprey’ – by Peter Noy

Photograph by Elisa Stone on Unsplash Dr Peter Noy is the Associate Director for Research at the Future Food Beacon. His work mentoring early careers researchers is integral to his key responsibility for coordinating and developing successful funding bids for the Beacon. In this new ‘Take control of your career’ series, he will be sharing …

When does rice not like water? – An interview with Gavers Oppong

Gavers Oppong is a second-year PhD student on the UoN-Rothamsted Graduate Centre for International Agriculture scheme. His project is titled ‘Understanding the mechanism for hypoxia tolerance in rice’. He is supervised by Prof. Frederica Theodoulou and Dr Smita Kurup (RRes) and Dr Darren Wells and Dr Jonathan Atkinson (UoN)   Why did you decide to …

Following the flight of the bumble bee – An interview with Chloe Sargent

Chloe Sargent is a UoN-Rothamsted PhD candidate. Her project is entitled ‘Risk assessment of sub-lethal insecticide exposure: new biomarkers and metrics in bees’. She is supervised by Dr Reinhard Stoger (UoN), Prof Emyr Davies (Rothamsted Research) and Dr Lisa Chakrabarti (UoN). Why did you decide to do a PhD? What were you doing before? Before …

Exploring diversity in pearl millet seed – An interview with Brighton Gapare

Brighton Gapare is a joint Nottingham-Rothamsted PhD Student 2019–2023. His project is entitled ‘Exploring genetic diversity in grain structure, composition and functionality of pearl millet germplasm’. His supervisors are Dr. Rahul Bhosale (UoN), Prof. Malcom Bennett (UoN) and Prof. Peter Shewry (RRes). He also works with Dr Neil Graham (UoN), Prof. David Cook (UoN), Prof. …

Plant vaccines for poultry disease – An interview with Ika Nurzijah

Ika Nurzijah is a second-year PhD student on the UoN-Rothamsted Graduate Centre for International Agriculture scheme. Her project is titled ‘Plant-based vaccines for prevention of poultry viral diseases: Newcastle disease’. She is supervised by Dr Steve Dunham (UoN), Dr Kostya Kanyuka (RRes), and Dr Janet Daly (UoN). Why did you decide to do a PhD? …

How does rice reproduce when it’s hot? – An interview with Maureen Ng’ang’a

Maureen Ng’ang’a is a second-year PhD student on the UoN-Rothamsted Graduate Centre for International Agriculture scheme.  Her project is entitled ‘TempR: Developing reproductive resilience to heat stress in rice’. Her supervisors are: Dr. Sigrid Heuer (RRes), Prof. Zoe Wilson (UoN) and Prof. Erik Murchie (UoN). Why did you decide to do a PhD? What were …

Reconstructing the ecosystems of the past – An interview with Annegreet Veeken

Annegreet Veeken is a PhD student on the Palaeobenchmarking Resilient Agricultural Systems (PalaeoRAS) project  Why did you decide to do a PhD? What were you doing before? I had a year between ending my masters and starting my PhD. During that year, I worked part-time at a Dutch environmental NGO as a project assistant in water quality and …

How do plant roots respond to higher temperatures? – An interview with Aneesh Lale

Aneesh Lale is a PhD student on the Palaeobenchmarking Resilient Agricultural Systems (PalaeoRAS) project  Why did you decide to do a PhD? What were you doing before?  My father, having never found the time to complete his post-graduation, always encouraged me to learn as much as possible. My inquisitive nature, in addition to ample support from my parents, made a PhD …

Modelling ancient Mayan farming – An interview with Rik Rutjens

Rik Rutjens is a PhD candidate with the Palaeobenchmarking Resilient Agricultural Systems (PalaeoRAS) project. Photo (right) by Karla Hernandez-Aguilar Why did you decide to do a PhD? What were you doing before?   After completing my undergraduate and masters degrees at Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands, I could not decide which path to take for my future: research or industry? Eventually, a research internship at San Diego …