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Written by:
Paul Holland
28 Jun 2021

Dr Sasha Turchyn has been chosen as the recipient of the 2021 R. Berner Lectureship. The Lectureship, which will be presented at the Goldschmidt 2021 conference, is awarded to scientists who show an ‘exceptional ability to define globally important biogeochemical processes, develop new understanding, and significantly advance the corresponding area of research’.

Dr Turchyn is a Staff Fellow at Trinty Hall in Natural Sciences (Earth Sciences) and works at the interface between geochemistry and (micro)biology to understand how microbial populations such as bacteria and archaea influence the carbon cycle.

The lecture was established in 2017 by students and friends of the late Robert Berner to commemorate his intellectual legacy in geochemistry. It is a joint program of the Geochemical Society and the European Association of Geochemistry, presented as an annual lecture at the Goldschmidt Conference.

The lecture is on a ‘Berner’ subject, which includes a wide range of topics associated with elemental cycling at the Earth’s surface.

Dr Turchyn, a Reader in Biogeochemistry at Cambridge Earth Sciences, said: “Bob Berner is a personal scientific hero of mine; his was the textbook of the first course I ever took in Geochemistry.

“To be giving a lecture named after him is a complete honour. I reference his work all the time, and am always amazed at how he figured out so many fundamental principles so early on.”

Lecturers are distinguished and outstanding mid-career scientists, selected by the Berner Lecture Committee, then approved by the Geochemical Society and the European Association of Geochemistry.