International Scientific Coordinator of the Wheat Initiative, French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA)
Hélène Lucas obtained her PhD in plant biology from the University of Rennes (France) in 1987 and was a post-doctoral fellow at the Plant Breeding Institute in Cambridge (UK) from 1989 to 1991. She then joined the French National Institute for Agronomic Research (INRA) where she devoted her scientific career to the analysis of plant genome organization, evolution and regulation, with a special emphasis on plant transposable elements in model and crop species.
From 2005 to 2011 Dr. Lucas was Head of the Genetics and Plant Breeding Division at INRA, where she managed 20 research units and 15 experimental stations across France. During this period, she strongly supported the development of plant bioinformatics in the fields of genomics and genetics. She has been a member of the European Plant Science Organisation Board (2003-2006), the Scientific Council of Genoplante (2005-2010), the Scientific Council of the CTPS (French Permanent Technical Committee for Plant Breeding, 2005-2011) and the Scientific Council of Arvalis (2007-2011). Since September 2011, she chairs the Managing Board of the French “Plant Biotech” Public-Private Partnership.
Hélène Lucas has been the Scientific Coordinator of the International Research Initiative for Wheat Improvement - now Wheat Initiative - since its endorsement by the G20 member states in June 2011. She coordinated the submission of the proposal to the G20 Agriculture Ministers.