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Filter: keynote address


Opening Ceremony: Céad Míle Fáilte




Keynote Address: Eric Karsenti "TARA-OCEANS: A world-wide study of oceanic plankton ecosystems"
    Thursday July 12, 2012 9:30am - 10:30am @ The Liffey B

    Plankton ecosystems are at the root of oceans foodweb, and play a key role in the regulation of our atmosphere’s dynamics and overall earth climate. Yet, their organisation, evolution and dynamics remain poorly understood. The Tara Oceans Project was launched in September 2009 for a 3 year exploration of the world’s ocean plankton ecosystems aboard the ship TARA. This project is collecting and archiving coherent and comprehensive physico-chemical data sets, oceanographic, ecological and biological samples. The sampling has been devised to allow “end to end” quantitative and genomic analysis of organisms from viruses to fish larvae. Starting as a grassroot initiative of a few scientists, the project has grown into a global consortium of over 100 specialists from diverse disciplines, including oceanography, microbial ecology, genomics, molecular and cell biology, taxonomy, bioinformatics and physical modeling. This multidisciplinary community organises and analyses the Tara Oceans project samples and data with the aim of generating coherent, open access data sets, usable for global ecosystems modeling as well as symbiosis, marine life evolution and ocean metabolomics analyses. This project will generate important information and tools to better understand the relationship between environmental changes and ocean life, result in the identification of new functions and genes of importance to human health and energy production. In the seminar I will show how the expedition has been organised, the sampling strategy, the on-land analysis strategy, the types of results that we expect and why this will be important. I will show some initial results using metagenomics concerning the biodiversity of bacterial, viral, protist and metazoan populations and preliminary results on the ecosystems structure to indicate how we will make sense of the large amount of data generated by this expedition.


    Session Chair: Geoffrey O'Sullivan, The Marine Institute, Ireland

    Sunday September 23, 2012 18:00 - 19:00 @ Auditorium...

    Type Keynote Address
    Tags KN3


Keynote Address: Mary Robinson "Equity and Climate Science"


Careers Programme Keynote Address: Daniel Funeriu "From science lab to science minister - a perspective" and the European Young Researchers' Awards
    Thursday July 12, 2012 10:45am - 12:15pm @ Auditorium

    Dr. Funeriu will deliver a 30 minute keynote address entitled "From Science Lab to Science Minister - a Perspective".

    Following the keynote address, Professor Enric Banda  will present the European Young Researchers' Award to the winners for 2011 and 2012, who will then give a 5 minute summary of their research.


    Session Chair: Conor O'Carroll, Research Director, Irish Universities Association

    Marie Curie Fellow, Adviser to the President of Romania

    President of Euroscience

    Type Careers Programme, Keynote Address
    Tags CP2


Keynote Address: A conversation with James Watson (Nobel laureate)


Keynote Address: Alvaro Giménez Cañete "The Future of European Space Exploration"


Keynote Address: Enrico Giusti "Touching the Abstract; Mathematics at the Museum"
    Thursday July 12, 2012 12:15pm - 1:15pm @ Liffey Hall 2

    Mathematics has always played a minor role, if any, within traditional science museums. Recently, a number of museums and centres entirely dedicated to mathematics and its applications have opened, among which Il Giardino di Archimede (The garden of Archimedes) in Italy (1999), and the Mathematikum (2000) in Germany. More are either planned or under construction, including the MaMuseum in New York.What part of mathematics can be shown in a maths museum? And more importantly: how? In my talk, I shall address these questions and discuss some of the possible answers in the light of the experience gained at Il Giardino di Archimede.


    Session Chair: Professor James Slevin, National University of Ireland Maynooth

    Curator at Garden of Archimedes, Italy

    Type Keynote Address
    Tags KN5


Keynote Address: Marcus du Sautoy "The Secret Mathematicians"
    Thursday July 12, 2012 2:45pm - 3:45pm @ The Liffey A

    Artists are constantly on the hunt for interesting new structures to frame their creative process. From composers to painters, writers to choreographers, the mathematician’s palette of shapes, patterns and numbers has proved a powerful inspiration. Often subconsciously artists are drawn to the same structures that fascinate mathematicians. Through the work of artists like Borges and Dali, Messiaen and Laban, Professor du Sautoy will explore the hidden mathematical ideas that underpin their creative output but will also reveal that the work of the mathematician is sometimes no less driven by strong aesthetic values.


    Session Chair: Brian Trench, Dublin City University

    Charles Simonyi Professor for the Public Understanding of Science...

    Type Keynote Address
    Tags KN7


Keynote Address: Peter Doherty (Nobel Laureate) "Influenza: immunity and other issues"


Keynote Address: Renée Schroeder "RNA as a key molecule for the origin of Life"
    Thursday July 12, 2012 2:45pm - 3:45pm @ The Liffey B

    RNA molecules display many different functions, from coding mRNAs, catalytic ribozymes to RNAs that regulate gene expression at all levels. I will present our attempts to identify regulatory RNAs that control their own transcription. Using genomic SELEX, we discovered a large number of RNA aptamers in E. coli, yeast and human genomes that function as cis-acting transcriptional silencers.

    Session Chair: Prof. John Atkins, BioSciences Institute, University College Cork

    Group Leader, Max F. Perutz Laboratories, University of Vienna...

    Type Keynote Address
    Tags KN9


Keynote Address: Maj. Gen. Charles F. Bolden Jr. "NASA and a New Era of Space Exploration"


Keynote Address: Máire Geoghegan-Quinn "Collaboration, competition, connection - evidence of intelligent design in European science policy?"


Keynote Address: Brian Greene "The State of String Theory"
    Friday July 13, 2012 12:15pm - 1:15pm @ The Liffey B

    Professor Greene will review the motivation for string theory and discuss a number of essential developments during its 40 year history. He will then provide a status report in a variety of key areas, from phenomenology and cosmology to mathematics, focusing on issues of dark energy, the string landscape and the multiverse.


    Session Chair: Dr. Jiri Vala, Department of Mathematical Physics, National University of Ireland Maynooth


    With the support of the US Embassy Dublin

    Co-Director of the Institute for Strings, Cosmology, and Astroparticle...

    Type Keynote Address
    Host Organization US Embassy Dublin
    Tags KN13


Keynote Address: Bob Geldof "Making a Difference"


Keynote Address: Brian David Johnson "Mechanical ducks, tea-cup robots & Frankenstein’s monster: imagining a new future for computing "


Keynote Address: Helga Nowotny "The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge – and how to find uses and users"
    Friday July 13, 2012 2:45pm - 3:45pm @ The Liffey A

    What future does Europe have at a time beset by a fear of the future? The optimistic outlook which prevailed only a few years ago has yielded to gloomy doubts.Science and technology have always played a role as a gigantic, if unstable projection screen for public and private imaginairies alike, coloured with utopian or dystopian meaning.Where do we stand today? What are some of the emerging imaginairies that uneasily float across policy discourse, corporate boards, the social media interconnecting the younger generation?
    I will then turn to the ERC and what appears to be the seemingly useless knowledge it generates. I will argue that it is precisely its seeming uselessness that permits new uses and new users to emerge, take shape, become embedded in already existing systems, structures and practices or carve out new spaces for themselves. Historical examples abound, showing that solutions were readily offered, but yet had to find and define the problem which they were uniquely suited to address. As always, to jump from lessons offered by history to a complex and messy present is risky. Nevertheless, I will attempt to offer a few guidelines on how useless knowledge is transformed into uses and how users are constituated by using what science and technology have to offer. 

    Session Chair: Martin D. Shanahan, Chief Executive of Forfás, Ireland

    President of the European Research Council, Belgium

    Type Keynote Address
    Tags KN16


Debate on Scientific Publishing and Open Access
    Friday July 13, 2012 5:30pm - 6:30pm @ Auditorium

    This session will consider the issue of Quality Control in Scientific Publishing, both in the context of publication in for-profit journals and also in the context of a future move to Open Access journals. Against the backdrop of:

    • The proliferation of journals and the burgeoning of scientific publications,
    • Recent controversies over publication and subsequent corrections and retractions of flawed and fraudulent papers,
    • On-going community and political agitation for Open Access (OA),

    the following questions will be posed:

    1. Is the transition to full and immediate open access to research papers inevitable?
    2. Does the growth of open access threaten the quality of research papers?
    3. How will the science literature evolve over the foreseeable future, and how will the roles and funds of researchers, publishers, research councils and universities need to evolve with it?
    4. How will the achievements of researchers be documented, accredited and judged in the future?

    Director of European Advocacy, Scholarly Publishing and Academic...

    Editor-in-chief, Nature, UK

    President of NWO, the Dutch National Research Organisation

    Trinity College Dublin, Ireland Chairman of the ESOF2012 Programme...

    President, Initiative for Science in Europe; Director, EMBO...

    Type Keynote Address, Policy | Science Programme, Policy
    Host Organization ESOF2012
    Tags SP51



Keynote Address: Christian Keysers "The empathic brain"
    Saturday July 14, 2012 9:30am - 10:30am @ The Liffey B

    The empathic brain

    Most of us can effortlessly feel what goes on in other people. When we watch the scene in Dr. No where a tarantula walks on James Bond’s chest, we need no conscious deliberation to understand his intentions to kill the spider or to guess what the tingling of the spider’s legs feel like on his chest. Instead, we seem to empathically feel what he goes through. Our hands start sweating and our heart beats faster – as if we were in his stead. Why are we so empathic?In this talk, I will review research that shows that our motor system, normally involved in programing our own actions, becomes automatically activated when we see the actions of others. I will show how our somatosensory system, that normally responds when we are touched, becomes activated when we see the skin of other people be touched. Finally, I will show how regions of the brain involved in experiencing emotions such as disgust, pain and pleasure become activated when we see or read about others experience similar emotions.Together, this data shows why we do not need our intellect to understand other people. Our brain transforms what others do and feel into our own actions and feelings. We then feel what they feel, and intuitively adapt to their actions and emotions. Biology has equipped us with an empathic brain that endows us with an intuitive understanding of others and an intuitive sense of ethics. 

     Short Bio

    Christian Keysers (1973) leads the Social Brain Lab at the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience in Amsterdam and is Professor for the Social Brain at the University Medical Center Groningen. Together with his laboratory, he investigates how the brain allows us to understand other individuals. He is French and German, studied Psychology and Biology in Germany and the USA and received his PhD from the University of St. Andrews (Scotland). Thereafter he worked in Parma, Italy, in the group that discovered Mirror Neurons, and lives in the Netherlands since 2004. He wrote a book, ‘The Empathic Brain’, in which he shows how his discoveries change the way we think about social interactions and human nature.  Further Reading: The Empathic Brain by Christian Keysers, available from amazon (http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/9081829203/


    Session Chair: Prof. Orla Hardiman, Consultant Neurologist, Beaumont Hospital Dublin

    Christian Keysers (1973) leads the Social Brain Lab at the Netherlands...

    Type Keynote Address
    Tags KN17


Keynote Address: Lisa Randall "High Energies and Short Distances"


Keynote Address: Regina Palkovits "Biomass – a valuable feedstock of the future"


Keynote Address: Kári Stefánsson "Understanding the Heel of Achilles"


Keynote Address: Rolf-Dieter Heuer "The search for a deeper understanding of our universe at the Large Hadron Collider: the World’s Largest Particle Accelerator"
    Saturday July 14, 2012 2:45pm - 3:45pm @ Auditorium

    With the start of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, particle physics entered a new era. The LHC will provide a deeper understanding of the universe and the insights gained could change our view of the world, and the talk will present some of the reasons for the excitement surrounding the LHC. The LHC is expected to yield insights into the origin of mass, the nature of dark matter and the existence of hidden extra dimensions. This talk will address the exciting physics prospects offered by the LHC, present latest results and also a look forward.

     Session Chair: Dr. Ronan McNulty, School of Physics, University College Dublin

    Rolf-Dieter Heuer is the director general of CERN, the European Organization f...

    Type Keynote Address
    Tags KN21


Keynote Address: Craig Venter "From Reading to Writing the Genetic Code"


Keynote Address: Huanming Yang "Genomics and 'the Century of Biology' "
    Sunday July 15, 2012 9:30am - 10:30am @ Auditorium


    The Year of 2013 will see global celebrations for the 10th anniversary of the official completion of the Human Genome Project (HGP). The most significant impact by the HGP on life sciences is the “-omics-ization”. As the core technology of genomics, sequencing has provided “a starting point to orient and enable hypothesis-driven research” and has laid “the digital foundation onto which the systems approaches of the future will be built”. With the further strengthened belief and vision, BGI has taken opportunities of the 3 breakthroughs in sequencing technology, and, together with its global collaborators, has sequenced and analyzed numerous genomes of humans, other animals, plants and microorganisms, releasing approximately 650, 000 Gb sequence data as of the end of 2011. Sequencing is at a new era of providing “reference genome sequence” for every species, many individual genomes for “genome diversity/variations of a species” and those with identified traits for “phenotypic sequencing”, as well as for “applied genomics” in agriculture and health. A combination of molecular biology techniques, SC/iPC, animal cloning, synthetic biology and genomics, as well as other future emerging techs, will make the 21 century a real “Century of Biology”.

    Session Chair: Prof. David J. McConnell, Professor of Genetics, Trinity College Dublin

    Director of Beijing Genomics Institute, China

    Type Keynote Address
    Tags KN23


Keynote Address: Jocelyn Bell Burnell "We are made of star stuff"
    Sunday July 15, 2012 9:30am - 10:30am @ The Liffey B

    Is there really star dust in our veins? Where did the atoms in our bodies come from originally and how did they get to be here? What has the birth, death and life of stars to do with us?

    This talk will answer these and similar questions and show how we are made of star stuff.


    Session Chair: Prof. Luke Drury, President of the Royal Irish Academy

    Visiting Professor of Astrophysics at the University of Oxford...

    Type Keynote Address
    Tags KN24


Keynote Address: Lars Steinmetz "The road from genomics to personalised medicine"
    Sunday July 15, 2012 2:45pm - 3:45pm @ The Liffey B

    Genomics has already begun to foster a more personalised, predictive and preventive medicine. In particular, the rapid increases in high-throughput sequencing and our ability to interrogate numerous molecular mechanisms at a genome-wide scale has informed the understanding, diagnosis, and treatment of genetic diseases. In my presentation, I will demonstrate how work in my laboratory bridges diverse domains of genome science, from research aimed at gaining a fundamental understanding of the structure and function of genomes, to the application of these insights towards improving our understanding of diseases and advancing the effectiveness of treatments. We use multiple model organisms as platforms for developing technologies that enable us to dissect the genetics underlying complex traits, aiming at a systematic understanding of the molecular events that lead from genotype to phenotype. We work extensively on functional and mechanistic characterisations of transcription, the first manifestation of genetic variation; in addition, we study multiple diseases in model systems in order to profile the underlying networks and predict effective therapeutic strategies. Our overall goal is to establish approaches and discover biological principles that will enable the prediction and prevention of genetic diseases.


    Session Chair: Dr. Aoife McLysaght, Smurfit Institute of Genetics, Trinity College Dublin

    Joint Head of Unit and Senior Scientist, European Molecular Biology...

    Type Keynote Address
    Tags KN25


Science-2-Business Keynote Address: Pearse Lyons "Building a Billion-Dollar Business – a real-life story"
    Sunday July 15, 2012 2:45pm - 3:45pm @ The Liffey A

    How did a scientist with $10,000 build a multi-billion dollar company? How did this private company, with no outside investors, rise to become no. 7 in the world of animal health? What does the future hold for Alltech as it heads for a target of $4 billion in sales?


    Listen to the story of Dr. Pearse Lyons, founder and president of Alltech, a global animal health company that employs more than 2,800 people and conducts business in 128 countries throughout the world.  Born in Dundalk, he received his bachelor’s degree from University College Dublin, Ireland and obtained his master’s and doctoral degrees at the University of Birmingham, England. He later worked as a biochemist for Irish Distillers before founding Alltech in 1980.


    Today  Dr. Lyons is widely recognised as an entrepreneur and innovative industry leader in both biotechnology and agriculture. His scientific expertise, combined with an acute business sense, helped revolutionise the animal feed industry through the introduction of yeast-based ingredients to feed. Now, as the company enters its fourth decade of business, its solid base will enable it to extend products, core values and nutritional solutions to an ever-expanding market. At the same time, its commitment to the primacy of science, a commitment responsible for the company’s success, remains steadfast.

    Session Chair: Prof. Gerry Boyle, Director, Teagasc

    Founder and President of Alltech

    Type Keynote Address, Science-2-Business
    Tags KN26


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