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Abstract Detail

Where is plant systematics headed in the next ten years?

Knapp, Sandra [1].

Systematics, science and society - a virtuous circle?

What use is systematics (a.k.a. taxonomy)? Given the biodiversity crisis, some have suggested that this branch of science is tantamount to fiddling while Rome burns. Is it worth the effort and investment (however small that might seem to be) to continue with business as usual within the three major domains of our science –phylogeny, identification and description? Global societal challenges such as climate change or food security are often portrayed as outside the remit of taxonomic science – but this is not necessarily the case. I will explore the application of taxonomic science to some currently articulated “societal problems” - some of these are the obvious cases, others not. Our own community often sees its own utility more clearly than do others outside the field – why might this be? I will also explore how scientists can be their own worst enemies in demonstrating the relevance of their research, and how collaboration and cooperation can help to create the platform for the construction of what really could be a virtuous circle for the future.

Broader Impacts:

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1 - The Natural History Museum, Botany Department, Cromwell Road, London, SW7 5BD, UK


Presentation Type: Symposium or Colloquium Presentation
Session: SY07
Location: Franklin A/Hyatt
Date: Tuesday, July 10th, 2012
Time: 3:00 PM
Number: SY07004
Abstract ID:618

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