Location & dates EMBL Heidelberg, Germany 4 - 5 Nov 2020 Register interest
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Conference Overview

There have been five mass extinctions in Earth’s history, but are we already in the midst of a sixth? At least one million animal and plant species are currently threatened with extinction, many within decades – a rate unprecedented in human history.

To what extent, however, can we measure loss of biodiversity across scales, or accurately identify the causes of mass extinction? And how will this development affect the planet? More importantly, perhaps, is the question of whether scientific and societal interventions can effectively tackle this issue. Will initiatives such as the UN’s “Decade on Ecosystem Restoration” really provide solutions to the problem?

The 21st EMBL Science & Society Conference in 2020 seeks to address these questions. It will consider the impact of environmental changes on biodiversity, ecosystem services, and human well-being. Crucially, it will focus on potential solutions and types of action: from activism to political strategies, and from local grass-roots conservation groups to global youth movements. It will also evaluate the application of various targeted intervention methods across data science, emerging technologies, sustainability solutions and beyond.

Session Topics

  • The anthropocene extinction - scientific overview
  • The environmental and societal impact of mass extinction
  • Scientific and societal responses to mass extinction

For more information about previous meetings in this series please check the Science and Society Website.


EMBL Courses and Conferences are kindly supported by our Corporate Partnership Programme

Founder partners

  • Leica logo
  • Olympus logo

Corporate partners

  • 10x Genomics_120x82
  • Becton Dickinson logo
  • Bio-Rad logo
  • Boehringer Ingelheim logo
  • Eppendorf logo
  • GSK logo
  • Milteniy Biotec logo
  • Stilla logo
  • ThermoFisher logo

Associate partners

  • Merck logo
  • New England Biolabs logo
  • Nikon logo
  • Promega logo
  • Roche logo
  • Sanofi logo
  • Sartorius logo