Prof. Beverley Glover, BSc (St Andrews), PhD (East Anglia), FLS. Professor of Plant Systematics and Evolution; Director of the Botanic Garden.
My research focuses on the development of floral features which enhance pollination success. I am particularly interested in the co-evolution of flowers and animal pollinators, and in the evolution of developmental programmes controlling floral key traits. This work is important because the enormous species diversity of the flowering plants can be attributed, at least in part, to the reproductive isolation resulting from the recruitment of animals as pollen vectors. To understand angiosperm species diversity, then, we need to understand flowers and their interactions with animal pollinators. This understanding also underpins research into security of animal-pollinated food crops. By defining how pollinators interact with flowers and how the developmental programmes that produce attractive flowers evolve we have the opportunity to support plant breeders in their efforts to optimise yields of key crops.
I am Director of the University Botanical Gardens, having served on the Syndicate for ten years prior to this position. As Director, I have overall responsibility for strategy and leadership in the Garden. This includes developing our relationship with other parts of the University, the wider research community, other educational establishments, and the general public. I am particularly focused on achieving a balance in meeting our main objectives – which are research, teaching, outreach, and the provision of an amenity for the citizens of and visitors to Cambridge. I teach on the Garden’s education programme, particularly in the Cambridge Certificate in Practical Horticulture and Plantsmanship. Within the University I also lecture in the first year of the Natural Sciences Tripos (in the course “Evolution and Behaviour”) and in third year Plant Sciences.
- Official Fellow