Awards & Achievements

Scientists at the John Innes Centre are recognised for their contributions to the research community, both nationally and internationally

Professor Dale Sanders receives China International Science and Technology Cooperation Award

John Innes Centre Director, Professor Dale Sanders, has been honoured with one of China’s most prestigious awards in recognition of his work in establishing world-leading scientific collaborations. The China International Science and Technology Cooperation Award is made directly by the Chinese state and is the nation’s highest scientific honour for non-national individuals and institutions.

Professor Sanders said: “This is a great honour. Although it is a wonderful personal recognition of my cooperation with China, I receive this award on behalf of all my Chinese and UK collaborators and in gratitude for all their work. I see a very bright future for UK-China research collaboration. We must ensure that our work together strengthens the scientific excellence of both nations, but we must also recognise that our success comes with a responsibility to share the benefit with society in the UK, in China and globally. I expect that UK-China research collaboration will have great impact in the coming decade, including on agricultural productivity, on the well-being of our citizens and on the health of our planet.”

Normally, the award would be presented by President Xi in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, but Professor Sanders was unable to attend due to the Covid-19 pandemic.


Lesley Mitchenall recognised with Lifetime Achievement Award

At the first Research Institute Technician Awards (the RITAs), Research Assistant Lesley Mitchenall has been awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award to mark her achievements over many years at the John Innes Centre.

Lesley said she was “truly amazed” to receive the award and commented, “I have been fortunate to work with so many amazing people over the years. I hope this award helps to highlight the contributions that all Research Assistants make to the science at the John Innes Centre and the support they provide to students and post docs.”

The Director of the John Innes Centre, Dale Sanders, said: “This award brings well-deserved recognition for Lesley’s highly successful career. Her achievements have been outstanding. Her commitment and approach are fantastic and she is a talented scientist and colleague.”

Lesley was nominated for the award by Professor Tony Maxwell, who said: “Lesley’s achievements have been exceptional. She authored and co-authored numerous high-profile papers from work in my lab and she provides a range of scientific skills to many people.”


Rank Prize for Nutrition awarded to Professor Cathie Martin

Professor Cathie Martin has been awarded the prestigious Rank Prize for Nutrition 2022 for her globally significant research in making fruit and vegetables more nutritious.

The award recognises those who have made a significant contribution to human and animal nutrition, where their ideas have been carried through to practical applications of benefit to humankind.

Professor Dale Sanders, Director of the John Innes Centre, said: “The awarding of this prestigious prize to Cathie Martin is wonderful recognition for the enormous impact Cathie’s work has had in the field of metabolic engineering. From fundamental discovery to innovative ways of improving human diet, Cathie’s research contributions have been inspirational.” Professor Martin’s research into plant genetics and metabolism uses plant science tools to improve human diet and health with emphasis on biofortification and using plant metabolic engineering to enhance foods nutritionally.

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