Welcome to the Department of Plant Science
In many ways, we now live in the "golden age of biology". Our understanding of biological systems has advanced exponentially during the 20th century and technological developments allow us to pose questions that simply could not be asked a few decades ago. We are now able do model complex entities, such as ecosystems, and the development of molecular biology techniques gives us new tools with which to study live organisms.
While the progress and promise of biology are very positive, we also live at a time of great challenges: the human population is now close to 7 billions and continues to rise at an alarming rate, the climate is changing, worldwide energy availability is going down, quality freshwater is getting scarce, biodiversity is disappearing, and number of wild habitats are threatened by human activities.
Plant scientists have a crucial role to play in solving several of these problems. How will plants react to a changing climate? How can we design effective conservation strategies to preserve biodiversity? How can we keep feeding the growing population with quality food, while the resources to do so are scarcer than ever?
The challenge of using the knowledge accumulated in the field of biology to answer these questions falls in great part to plant scientists.
The department of Plant Science offers undergraduate programs that will train tomorrow's ecologists, botanists, agrologists and biotechnologists.