Director of Science at the James Hutton Institute and Emeritus Professor of Biology at the University of St Andrews, UK

Dr. Lesley Torrance’s current role is Executive Director of Science at The James Hutton Institute where she is responsible for the strategic direction and delivery of research including overseeing the delivery of the Scottish Government’s RESAS Strategic Research Programme and Underpinning National Capacity resources.  She is a member of the executive team responsible for science excellence and impact and strategic planning including two large capital investment projects (The International Barley Hub and The Advanced Plant Growth Centre) that when established will transform Hutton research capabilities and catalyze stakeholder interactions and investment in translational crop science.

She has more than 35 years’ research experience in plant virology and is Emeritus Professor of Biology, The University of St Andrews.  She has led many multi-partner international research projects.  Currently she has ongoing collaborations in Malawi and Kenya on developing sustainable and climate resilient potatoes suited to SSA production systems. She is an elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology and serves on the Board of the Dundee Science Centre.