Inaugural Kafatos Lecture brings outstanding science to the global public

The public lecture by Denis Duboule will be streamed worldwide from the Cultural Conference Centre of Heraklion, Greece, on Friday 7 October, 17:30 CEST / 16:30 BST.

A conference banner in green and blue, including the original signature of Fotis Kafatos
The Inaugural Kafatos Lecture will be streamed worldwide from the Cultural Conference Centre of Heraklion in Greece on Friday 7 October 2022. Credit: Creative Team/ EMBL

By Tom Furnival-Adams

To find out more and register free of charge for either the in-person or online event, please click here. For direct access to the lecture, please join here via zoom.

Reflecting on becoming EMBL Director General in 1993, Fotis Kafatos said in an interview many years later that he “dedicated [his] leadership to three concepts: excellence, cooperation and inclusiveness. Excellence is the fundamental element. It isn’t worth doing science unless you really aim to do outstanding science.”

Nearly thirty years after Kafatos’s appointment, and five years after his death, EMBL will draw on his legacy of excellence, cooperation and inclusiveness to inspire the inaugural Kafatos Lecture later this week.

This year’s lecture will be delivered by EMBL alumnus and distinguished developmental geneticist Denis Duboule, Professor at Collège de France and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne (EPFL), and is titled ‘Evolution and Embryonic Development: The Complex Story of our Dual Origins’.

Duboule will explore various aspects of our mixed origins, starting from Aristotelian philosophy and going up to Charles Darwin and the 19th century biological revolution. He will question the complex relationship between the origin of human beings as individuals and as interlinked members of Homo sapiens: can we consider these roles in isolation, or are they inextricably linked?

Beginning with a welcome address from the mayor of Heraklion, Vassilis Lambrinos, the event will be live-streamed globally in English and Greek and will seek to engage and welcome curious participants at all stages of life – from students to retirees – regardless of background or existing knowledge.

 “I’m touched and very grateful to have been selected as the inaugural speaker,” said Dennis Duboule. “I knew Fotis – and his science – for more than 25 years. To be invited to deliver this lecture in his memory in Heraklion, where he invested so much time and effort to promote science, is simply awesome. It is a fantastic opportunity for me, and I can’t wait.”

The Kafatos Lecture series was launched in 2021 to bring groundbreaking and timely life sciences research to the public, and provides an exciting new global platform for outstanding scientists with a record of excellent and engaging public speaking to share their work with the general public.

We encourage you to share news of this lecture with your friends, family, and wider network!

Tags: alumni, event, Greece, kafatos, public engagement, virtual event


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