Dr Kamila Kwasniewska
Kamila graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from the University of Wroclaw, Poland in 2006 and continued with a Master's studies in the field of Botany, which she completed in 2008. She focused on studying the absorption of mineral forms of nitrogen and expression of genes encoding high-affinity transporters in Arabidopsis thaliana. After arriving in Ireland, she undertook a research assistant position in the Plant Developmental Genetics Laboratory at Trinity College Dublin in 2011. At the same time, she was an external student of Molecular Biology at the Jagiellonian University in Poland. In 2012, she commenced a Ph.D. in the TCD’s Smurfit Institute with Prof. Wellmer’s, during which she investigated the novel functions of a transcription factor responsible for terminating the floral meristem activity in Arabidopsis thaliana.
In 2017 she took up the ERC Proof of Concept Post-doctoral position with Prof. McElwain’s at the Department of Botany, TCD. During this research project she worked on the development and commercialization of the first plant-based sensor kit for the standardization and calibration of controlled environment chambers. Following the research commercialization project, she took part in the Tephra Bag Citizen Science Experiment, funded by iCRAG. This project focused on development of a ‘volcanic ash teabag kit’ for a pilot experiment that was carried out by the general public. The project aimed at collecting data on chemical weathering of volcanic ash, as a new negative carbon emission technology and engaging with the members of the public and educating citizens on the possible reduction of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
Her current research project funded by the Arts Council Ireland is an art-science collaboration, focusing on the fascinating world of lichens as indicators of air quality. The project will explore how art can attune our attention to subtle changes in our environment and can cultivate observations, instincts and insights developed through our unique position within the natural world, and how these can complement scientific understandings of climate change and biodiversity crisis.