LERN DEBATE 2018– Synthetic biology

LERN DEBATE 2018 – Synthetic biology Recent technological advances are allowing scientists to redesign organisms or even build new life forms from scratch. This new developing area of research steps beyond traditional Genetic Modification (GM), to combine science and engineering in what is known as Synthetic Biology. Technologies such as CRISPR-Cas are already allowing us…

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LERN DEBATE 2017 – Big data

LERN DEBATE 2017 – BIG DATA The reduction in price of processing capacity and data storage is allowing us to generate datasets of unmatched size and complexity. This is especially true for the evolutionary sciences, where ever-increasing datasets are fuelled by the improvement of image analysis and sequencing technologies. We now face the challenge of finding…

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LERN DEBATE 2016- DR DARWIN

Thursday 7th April 2016 at the Linnean Society in Piccadilly. The annual debate organised in association with London Evolutionary Research Network (LERN) and the European Human Behaviour and Evolution Association (EHBEA). More than 150 years has passed since the publication of On the Origin of Species. Nevertheless, only recently has Darwin’s dangerous idea started to be applied…

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LERN DEBATE 2015- Darwin’s ark: Choosing the Species to Save From Extinction

DEBATE – Darwin’s ark: Choosing the Species to Save From Extinction The annual LERN\Linnean Society debate- Thursday, the 19th of November, at the Linnean Society 5pm. You can find more information on this event on the Linnean Society website. A panel of people working in conservation science an conservation policy will discuss if conservation work should be prioritising…

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LERN DEBATE 2014- The challenges of expanding agricultural productivity while safe-keeping biodiversity

This year LERN joined hands with the Linnean Society to bring you an exciting evening at the Burlington House on Thursday 20th of November 2014. This event will honour environmental pioneer Rachel Carson, who sadly passed away 50 years ago. As such, the evening will be a panel discussion on the challenges of expanding agricultural productivity…

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LERN DEBATE 2012- Proximate and ultimate explanations of behaviour

“This house believes that the distinction between proximate and ultimate causes hinders a complete understanding of evolutionary processes.” The topic will consider Ernst Mayr’s distinction between proximate and ultimate explanations of behaviour, which has been hugely influential in evolutionary theory. Are recent criticisms of this dichotomy invalid or does the direction of future research lie…

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LERN Debate 2010- Resuscitating Lamarck: Do we need a new evolutionary theory?

Resuscitating Lamarck: Do we need a new evolutionary theory?   The issue of epigenetics has sparked some discussion about the mechanisms by which evolutionary change arises. Some scientists believe that epigenesis has been an important factor in evolution, and propose a reformulation of the evolutionary theory as we know it, while others do not see…

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LERN DEBATE 2009- Is natural selection at the group level an important evolutionary force?

On July 7th 2009, LERN held a debate on group selection in which four eminent speakers in the field discussed the motion: Is natural selection at the group level an important evolutionary force? Stuart West Professor of Evolutionary Biology, University of Oxford Herbert Gintis Professor of Economics, Santa Fe Institute, University of Siena, and Central…

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