As the former Chief Scientific Adviser to the President of the European Commission and the first Chief Scientific Adviser to Scotland, Dr. Anne Glover has been helping to influence scientific policies in the United Kingdom and Europe.
Earning a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry in 1978 at Edinburgh University, she continued her studies at Cambridge University, being awarded a doctorate in Molecular Microbiology three years later. As a professor at Aberdeen University the focus of her research has been varied during her career but has included the investigation of how proteins are synthesized and directed to the correct locations within our cells and the development of biosensors to detect environmental pollution.
Playing major roles for United Kingdom research councils, she has been involved in the setting of strategic priorities and budgets for science across the UK. Appointed in 2006 and serving in the office for five years, she was the first Scientific Adviser to Scotland where her role was to further enhance Scotland’s reputation as a science nation. She was selected in 2012 to fill a similar role for the European Commission where she provided independent expert advice on any aspect of science, technology, and innovation as requested by the President of the European Commission.
Some of her recent work has been examining how humans respond to stress at the molecular level which has particular relevance to how we age and how we respond to artificial stresses such as chemotherapy. She has also returned to some of her earlier work in biosensors and using these for environmental studies. Biosensors have been applied to investigate factors which affect the activity of bacterial cells as well as developing a rapid toxicity test which enables contamination to be detected in environmental samples such as water, soil, sediment and sludge and determining the bioremediation potential of contaminated land and water.
For her work in environmental sciences she was awarded the Commander of the British Empire by the Queen of England in 2006 and was promoted to Dame Commander of the British Empire in 2015.
Written by Angela Goad