The UCL Symposium on the Origins of Life took place on Monday 21st July 2014.
This one-day symposium represents the second such event on origins science held at UCL. Held at the JZ Young Theatre in the Anatomy Building at UCL, a packed audience heard presentations from a range of scientists from throughout the UK and Europe on aspects of origins science from planetary science, through chemical to biochemical origins and ultimately primitive cellular systems. The range of topics covered goes only some way to demonstrating the central challenges involved in origins research and how a complete picture is likely only by cooperation between scientists from disparate backgrounds attempting to formulate and drive at common problems from different directions. Following a full days science from 13 speakers, the audience was helped to wind-down (or be wound up!) by a typically left-field assessment of origins from broadcaster-author-scientist and self-confessed geek, Dr Adam Rutherford.
The event, organised with characteristic efficiency by Professor Finn Werner and Dr Nick Lane, was formally opened with a short presentation by UCL Provost, Professor Michael Arthurs, and was sponsored by the UCL Grand Challenges and the Institute of Structural and Molecular Biology. A full outline of the day can be found here.
Report by ASB Present Dr Terry Kee; art by Odra Noel