Plant Genomes in a Changing Environment (Virtual Conference)

October 18th - 20th 2021

Wellcome Genome Campus, UK


The meeting will bring together plant scientists working on a variety of crop and wild species in their natural environment, as well as the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. It will provide a forum to discuss recent advances in plant genome biology aiming at the elucidation of gene function and networks, natural and induced variation and their implications in agricultural breeding programmes.

The increasing availability and improved quality of genomic data for crop species as well as natural populations is gradually enabling plant scientists to tackle some of the most critical global challenges such as environmental change and food security.

This conference will showcase the application of genomic techniques and emerging technologies to understand genomes and how they vary across changing environments. It will provide a platform for the transfer of knowledge of diverse plant systems that differ in their ecology, physiology, genomic complexity and the tools that are available for research and aims to connect researchers from academia and industry.

This year’s meeting will focus on the genomics of polyploidy and evolutionary genomics, and will discuss how to improve plants for tolerance of biotic and abiotic stresses.


The conference will run from Monday 18 October until Wednesday 20 October 2021.  Sessions will start at 13:00 BST (07:00 EST) and finish at approximately 18:00 BST (13:00 EST) each day.  See the time where you are here.

Topics will include:

  • Genomics of Polyploidy
  • Abiotic Adaptation
  • Biotic Interaction
  • Plant Evolutionary Genomics
  • Emerging Technology

Organisers and speakers

Scientific programme committee

Joy Bergelson
University of Chicago, USA

Kirsten Bomblies
ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Michele Morgante
University of Udine, Italy

Cristobal Uauy
John Innes Centre, UK

Keynote speakers

Deborah Charlesworth
University of Edinburgh, UK

Zachary Lippman
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, USA

Confirmed speakers

Siobhan Brady – University of California, Davis, USA
Eunyoung Chae – National University of Singapore, Singapore
Patricia Lang – Stanford University, USA
Polina Novikova – Max Planck Institute for Breeding Research, Germany
Ruben Rellan-Alvarez – NC State University, USA
Matthew Reynolds – CIMMYT, Mexico
Loren Rieseberg –  University of British Columbia, Canada
Eva Stukenbrock – University of Kiel, Germany
Andrea Sweigart – University of Georgia, USA
Amos Tanay – Weizmann Institute, Israel
Mario Vallejo-Marin – University of Stirling, UK
Dan Voytas – University of Minnesota, USA

Conference organiser

Lucy Criddle, Conference & Events Organiser
Jane Murphy, Scientific Programme Officer

How to register

The virtual registration package includes: Access to all live-streamed sessions (including poster sessions and online networking channels), as well as access to all sessions ‘on-demand’ for four weeks after the event.  Log in details for the virtual conference portal will be provided on Thursday before the event.

Student TBC
Delegates from LMICs* TBC
Academic TBC
Commercial TBC

*To increase the international diversity of attendees at our meetings, we have reduced fees for delegates from Lower and Middle Income Countries (see list of countries here).

A number of registration bursaries are available from Wellcome Connecting Science.  Priority will be given to students and scientists from under-resourced regions.

To apply for a bursary (free registration), please send:

  • a letter explaining how you will benefit from attending the conference
  • a short CV

to the conference organiser by 14 September 2021

Registration deadline: 21 September 2021


We welcome abstracts from all areas relevant to the main themes of the meeting, for both oral and poster presentations. Several oral presentations will be chosen from the abstracts submitted.

Abstracts will only be considered from registered delegates. Please use our online abstract submission system and follow the instructions given to ensure your abstract is submitted correctly. All abstracts must be submitted by the deadline. If you are intending to submit more than one abstract, please contact the conference organiser prior to registration.

The scientific programme committee will assess your abstract after the deadline has passed and you will be notified whether you have been selected for an oral or poster presentation.

Poster boards onsite will accommodate 118 cm high by 84 cm wide (A0- portrait) of printed material. Accepted abstracts will appear in the conference programme book and poster boards will be allocated at the conference.

Abstract deadline: 24 August 2021

How to upload an abstract once you have already completed registration:

  1. Log back into your registration account using either Firefox or Internet Explorer as your browser, via link above the ‘Share’ button on the right hand column of this page
  2. Click on ‘Account’ (top right).
  3. Then click on ‘View account history’. This will show a table of your event registrations.
  4. In the right-hand column you will see the option to ‘Upload file’ – click on this and select to upload an abstract.


Keynote lecture video from 2020 meeting

At the root of cellular responses to water extremes in rice

Keynote lecture by Julia Bailey-Serres (University of California, Riverside, USA) at Plant Genomes in a Changing Environment 2020

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