Challenges facing society
In the years to come, global population growth, rapidly increasing prosperity in Asia and elsewhere, and dwindling supplies of coal and oil will trigger a dramatic rise in demand for food and biomass for energy, chemicals and other products.
These challenges will be compounded by climate change, which will necessitate improvements to the ability of crops to withstand drought, salination, floods, infestation by microorganisms and other climate-related stressors. It will also be vital to increase primary production, especially of plant biomass, and to develop biological production systems that use advanced biotechnology to produce chemicals and other high-value products with which to replace oil and other fossil fuels. Danish research – particularly at the University of Copenhagen – is strong in this field, especially when it comes to the new and growing interdisciplinary research into synthetic biology.
Major research results
- Using solar energy to produce proteins and enzymes
- Better utilisation of plants
- Disease-resistant plants
- Plants capable of withstanding climate change
- Resource-efficient plants
- Plant production with limited resources
- Technology to remove unwanted substances from plants
Stakeholders in research
The opening of the Copenhagen Plant Science Center at the University has established a dynamic hub for the type of interdisciplinary research that characterises research into biological production. The Center enables various groups of researchers to draw on each other's strengths in order to understand how biological systems are structured and how they function. Armed with the new insights that are emerging all the time, the aim is to develop new, sustainable biological production systems based on plants, and in doing so help to solve some of the major challenges that the world is facing.
- B21st – Biomass for the 21st century
- Center for Advanced Bioimaging (CAB)
- Center for Applied Bioinformatics
- Centre for Regional Change in the Earth System (CRES)
- Copenhagen Plant Science Center
- Center of Excellence for Dynamic Molecular Interactions (DynaMo)
- Nano-Science Center
- PUMPKIN, Grundforskningscenter
- Pro-Active Plants - VKR center of Excellence
- Synthetic Biology - UNIK
- The Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability