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Letter from the Project Lead
Our societies are increasingly confronted with global threats impacting climate, food security and population health. Plants are essentials to communities globally, and a greater understanding of their fundamental biological mechanisms is needed to face these major problems. Plant research institutions across the globe have contributed to many innovations and discoveries. However, collaborative approaches must happen to tackle these complex problems. We believe that solutions are best identified through collaboration.
We are proposing a new approach to unleash the power of collaboration in plant research. The Plant Cell Institute (PCI) aims to be the first distributed institute where researchers work on plant cell-inspired solutions to address humanity's pressing problems. As the best scientists are distributed worldwide, the PCI will collaborate with existing institutions and research facilities. Researchers from the PCI will work across a network of labs and collaborate through a dedicated virtual institute to pursue the Ambition 2035 programme. Our programme is interconnected and designed to solve and understand key missing information of plant cellular processes.
The PCI embraces an innovative selection process to fund projects. As projects must reflect the needs of societies, communities are involved in the decision-making. Grants are distributed according to the community's favourite proposals, and the PCI's resources are then dedicated to the selected projects. Through its unique funding and coordination process, the PCI supports ideas rather than individuals.
We also deeply believe that science is a public good, and we advocate for long-term, open and transparent research data. Consequently, the PCI’s open source commitment guarantees the availability of research results and materials. We are building a platform that ensures data transparency and proactively reward cooperation between projects.
We are committed to doing science differently, and we have set ourselves ambitious objectives. However, we acknowledge that the path to reach our goals will not be straight, and we need your help and support to implement the PCI’s vision and mission. The PCI can’t exist without a network of labs that embrace the same collaborative ambition. This documentation details the plan for the proposed institute and describes the different partners that we would like to involve. By expressing your interest in participating in this new scientific network, your support will help secure funds to launch the first phase of the PCI.
We strive to accelerate fundamental and applied research on plant cells to drive advances for a sustainable world. Setting up the PCI is an extraordinary opportunity to influence research for a greater impact on challenging problems facing humanity. Take part in revolutionary ideas. Dr Philippe V. Jutras Project Lead