Birmingham – Biology

Wednesday 16th January 2019

10.45am to 3.30pm
Town Hall

plus two examiner sessions

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The Scientists appearing on the day

Prof Steve Jones

Is Man Just Another Mammal?

Humans and chimpanzees share approximately 95% DNA. But what does this really tell us about ourselves? Professor Steve Jones tells us what Darwin’s revolutionary idea and modern genetics reveal about homo sapiens.

A leading research geneticist (at University College London) and a prolific author with many beautifully written books on evolution, none more so than Almost Like A Whale, which updates Darwin’s world-changing publication, taking into account a century and a half of major advances in evolutionary biology. What’s amazing is how intact Darwin’s great idea remains today. This will be at the centre of Professor Jones’s lecture.

Prof Robert Winston

Human Progress 

The pioneering figure in IVF treatment, Robert Winston, has a rare gift for communicating scientific ideas in the most engaging way imaginable. We are lucky to have him speaking in-depth about the science of human progress and the ethical questions this raises.

He is a medical doctor, distinguished scientist, particularly in the area of human fertility in which he is a pioneer of IVF treatment. He, like most of our contributors, has the gift of being able to communicate in a most engaging way. not surprisingly he is also a well-known broadcaster and in addition he is also a politician who sits on the Labour Party benches in the House of Lords. We are lucky to have him speaking in-depth about the science of human reproduction and its manipulation.

Dr Ben Goldacre

The MMR Scandal and Other Scientific Quackery

Ben Goldacre has spent much of his career as an author, broadcaster and academic unpicking the misuse of science and statistics by journalists, politicians, quacks and drug companies – no more so than after the 1998 MMR hoax, whose dangerous influence is still felt today.

Ben Goldacre is the author of Bad Science and Bad Pharma and a Senior Clinical Research Fellow at the Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine at Oxford University.

Dr Hannah Critchlow

Demystifying the human brain

Why are neuroscientists only able to properly probe consciousness now? And what are we yet to discover? Neuroscientist and author, Dr Hannah Critchlow, will take us on a voyage of conscious discovery. A neuroscientist from the University of Cambridge. Her research is in cellular and molecular as well as behavioural and cognitive neuroscience. She was named one of the UK’s Top 100 Scientists by the Science Council.

Dr Jenny Rohn

Revenge of the Microbes

What are bacteria? How do antibiotics work? And what can we do about increasing antibiotic resistance? Dr Jenny Rohn will look at the fascinating and terrifying world of bacteria.

She is a cell biologist from University College London, where she is head of a cell biology lab which looks at how the cells of our body interact with invading bacteria. She has also studied cell shape for a Wellcome Trust Fellowship. As well as this, she is the author of two novels and founder of the website lablit.com.