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From Fellow to student, use the links below and read about some of our members

Fellow (FRSB)

Dr Roger Owen CBiol FRSB

Dr Roger Owen FRSB"I am head of ecology for the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA). I consider it to be one of the most exciting jobs you could ever have in biology.

"I graduated with a degree in zoology from Dundee and PhD in technological economics from Stirling, but I started as an assistant scientist and worked my way up from there, taking every opportunity that presented itself.


"I manage ecological services in SEPA, ranging from microbiology to marine science, and from integrated catchment management to invasive species. I enjoy the sheer diversity of the job and the many challenges that come from balancing environmental protection and supporting sustainable economic growth.

"Having been a member of the Society I very recently became a Fellow. I hope to contribute to the crucial work the Society carries out in influencing policy and promoting education to disseminate the many benefits of biological science to the wider public."

Professor Gail Cardew FRSB 

Professor Gail Cardew FRSB

"I am the director of science and education at the Royal Institution and chair of the board at the EuroScience Open Forum, which will take place in Manchester in July 2016.

"In my work I enjoy the fact that encouraging people to think more deeply about science can be interpreted in a multitude of different ways - from inquiry-led activities to help parents carry out activities with their children, to encouraging scientists to think more broadly about their work by engaging with the public and other stakeholders.

"I initially joined the Society because I wanted to do my bit for biology. However since joining I've already attended one of the leadership training courses and it was incredibly useful - both in terms of content and meeting interesting people."

Dr Beatrix Schlarb-Ridley FRSB

"Dr Beatrix Schlarb-Ridley FRSBI am director of innovation and impact at British Antarctic Survey, with a passion for seeing research outcomes make a difference to global challenges.

"Originally I trained as a biochemist. My early research was fundamental in nature, investigating surface interactions of photosynthetic electron transfer proteins. I was keen to investigate potential applications of this research, and did so first in the medical field and later in bioenergy and bioremediation.

"Through a business Fellowship I discovered my passion for catalysing technology and knowledge transfer. I found it immensely gratifying to see step changes brought about through new connections between academia and industry, and enjoyed developing socio-economic benefit of research outcomes. This led me to my current position, where I develop and implement innovation strategies for polar research."

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Member (MRSB)

Dr James Donald MRSB

James Donald"I studied biological sciences at the University of Oxford. An interest in how bacteria interact with their environment led me on to a PhD in molecular microbiology which I carried out at the John Innes Centre and the University of Dundee.

"Towards the end of my PhD I realised that my skills and interests lay much more in writing, organising biology in general, rather than active research and focusing on a small area of the field.


"I work for the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) where I am a strategy and policy manager within the Skills and Careers Unit. The unit focuses on developing BBSRC's strategy for supporting skills and training within the biosciences.

"I enjoy identifying areas where BBSRC can have a beneficial impact on the development of early career researchers, and subsequently developing ideas to help address these. It's also always great working with BBSRC fellows at the various cohort events and conferences we hold, as they are an extremely talented and enthusiastic bunch."

Dr Danae Dodge MRSB

Dr Danae Dodge MRSB

"Ever since I was a child I wanted to study human genetics. But unpredictable and fortunate events led me from my BSc in applied biology at the University of Newcastle to my master's in biomolecular archaeology at both The University of Manchester and the University of Sheffield.

"I went on to do a PhD in scientific archaeology focusing on ancient DNA. I examined the feasibility of reconstructing Neanderthal demography to help identify what led them to their extinction.


"The study of DNA has always appealed to me. I remember when Dolly the sheep was born and I was fascinated by what this could mean for science and society. The progress in genetics and the latest innovations (like the CRISPR gene editing technology) never cease to amaze me. Next generation sequencing technology has led to an explosion of ancient DNA and has meant that the oldest DNA analysed to date is 700,000 years old."

Diren Beyoglu MRSB

Diren Beyoglu

"I am part of the Hepatology Research Group in Bern, Switzerland, which is known for both clinical and experimental research into the emerging field of matabolomics.

"After studying pharmacy, I went on to do an MSc and PhD in pharmaceutical toxicology at Marmara University in Istanbul. For a decade, I conducted research into food, and environmental and occupational toxicology, mostly using gentoxicity assays. This is when I learnt the academic tools of the trade: teaching, and grant and ethics applications, as well as presenting findings at both national and international meetings.

"I wish to climb further up the learning curve of biology, which is why I have joined the Society at this time. More interactions with other biologists will greatly help with my research."

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Associate (AMRSB)

Grace Paget AMRSB

Grace"I love nothing more than writing about science! I first got into biology when I was 14 and doing my GCSEs. I was fascinated by how it underpins pretty much everything concerned with the structures and functions of life.

"I have always enjoyed writing and I can particularly remember being set a piece of homework to write an article about stem cells. I took it really seriously and of course tried to make it look like the front page of a national newspaper! From then on I realised how important it is to communicate interesting work.

"I was encouraged by my biology teacher, Mrs Lebreuilly, to stick at it and since then I have been lucky enough to write for the RSB as well as BBC Focus Magazine and the British Medical Association - loving every second of it! Earlier this year I worked as a media assistant for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust and I am now at university studying biology and English literature."

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Student affiliate

Find out about becoming a student affiliate member                         Back to the top  


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Neil Thorpe RSciTech

Neil Thorpe"I joined the Civil Service in 1993, working for the Submarine Environmental Chemistry Unit at the Institute of Naval Medicine (INM). In 1999, I joined their helicopter crash team travelling the world taking care of the environmental impact of crashes, including biological waste, fuel spills and carbon fibre debris. I helped clear 34 helicopter crashes in total.

"In 2005 I was asked to volunteer to help out in the microbiology section by the microbiology section leader as they were short staffed at the time. Apparently I was quite good and was asked to apply for the post of band D microbiologist, where, 10 years later, I still work today.

"I joined the Society in May last year and eventually achieved my RSciTech in January this year. The certificate sits proudly on my desk for all to see."

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