By role
By institution
Dr Nessa O’Connor
Dr Fionnuala Murphy
Prof Meave Henchion
Dr Gerard Cagney
Prof Nick Holden
Prof Pat Guiry
Prof Yurii K. Gun’ko
Prof Kevin O’Connor
Prof Eoin Casey
Prof Brijesh Tiwari

Nessa is an ecologist and marine biologist who is primarily interested in understanding the dynamics that underpin coastal ecosystems, the effects of multiple stressors, including climate change, and the sustainable management of benthic marine resources (e.g. shellfish, seaweed).

Current projects include:

  • Beyond biofuel: Advanced seaweed cultivation for marine biodiscovery and climate change mitigation (Science Foundation Ireland)
  • Vulnerability of life stages of marine calcifiers to changes in ocean chemistry (Marine Institute)
  • Quantifying the impact of multiple stressors on the production of marine benthic resources; and Blue carbon potential of seagrass communities (Trinity College Dublin)

Dr Fionnuala Murphy is an Assistant Professor in the UCD School of Biosystems & Food Engineering, and is UCD Programme Director of the MSc Bioeconomy with Business, and Programme Coordinator of the MSc in Sustainable Energy and Green Technologies and ME in Biosystems & Food Engineering.

Dr Murphy’s research focuses on life cycle assessment modelling for the analysis of environmental impacts of a range of production systems, with a special interest in renewable energy systems. Her work aims to understand, quantify and analyse complex environmental exchanges resulting from renewable energy deployment across the full value chain.

Dr Murphy is leading both national and EU research in the development of the sustainable circular bioeconomy, acting as a Principal Investigator on; BBI SpiralG ‘Production of Phycocyanin from the Spirulina Arthrospira Sp.’, BBI AgriChemWhey ‘An integrated biorefinery for the conversion of dairy by-products to high value bio-based chemicals’, and H2020 AgroCycle ‘Sustainable techno-economic solutions for the agricultural value chain’. A key element of Dr Murphy’s work is to carry out industry relevant research, participate in effective and relevant knowledge transfer, and foster links between industry and academia.



PhD, University College Dublin


BE Biosystems Engineering, University College Dublin

Maeve is a Principal Research Officer /Head of Dept in the Agrifood Business and Spatial Analysis in the Teagasc Ashtown Food Research Centre in Dublin. A UCD Adjunct Professor, Maeve is the BiOrbic Sustainability Platform Co-Lead and Chair of the Centre’s Research Programme Committee.

179 publications, >€4m research funding, Associate editor Nutrition and Food Science Technology. Partner on EUSCAR (CASA) to develop EU research agenda for bioeconomy.

Advisory board EU AgriForValor. Member of Ireland’s High-Level Implementation Group for the National Policy Statement on the Bioeconomy. Research interests span the supply chain and usually operate at the interface between social science and physical and life sciences. They include food innovation, sustainable food production and consumption, consumer and industry acceptance of novel food technologies, food quality and strategic food marketing.

Dr Cagney is a senior research scientist focusing on the analysis of biological and clinical problems using network approaches, particularly protein interactions and synthetic biology.

Expert in mass spectrometry, proteomics, synthetic biology, bioinformatics.

Current projects:

  1. Reverse engineering bioplastic producing bacteria to generate novel and sustainable biopolymers
  2. Proteomics of biofilms
  3. Proteomics of the microbiome


PhD, Queens University Belfast

Email Prof Nick Holden
Professional PlatformsLinkedInORCID

Professor Holden’s research is on the sustainability of agriculture and food chains, with a focus on: (i) Life Cycle Assessment; (ii) Soil Quality (Sensing and Visual) methods; and (iii) Agricultural Systems Technology. As a member of the Biosystems Engineering discipline since 1998, he teaches life cycle assessment, green technology projects, precision agriculture and research and teaching methods. Nick is head of subject for Agricultural Systems Technology and has recently led the introduction of a new BAgrSc degree in this area. He is also school Head of Teaching and Learning. He supervises graduate and post-doctoral research as part of the activity of his research group.

Nick is a Principal Investigator (PI) in the UCD Earth Institute and UCD Institute of Food and Health, where he is leader of the Food Chain Sustainability theme. He is an SFI-funded PI associated with two major projects, the Innovation Partnership CONSUS, where he leads a work package on nutrient use efficiency as part of the overall aim of developing intelligent support tools for agronomists, and the National Centre, BEACON, where he is Deputy Director and the Platform Leader for the Knowledge Hub. He is also a PI in 3 H2020 projects (AgroChemWhey, AgroCycle and Valumics), being a work package leader for two (AgroChemWhey and AgroCycle).


MEgnSc (by research), University College Dublin

PhD, NUI University College Dublin

MSc Pedoloogy and Soll survey, University of Reading

BSc Geography, Queen Mary, University of London

Email Prof Pat Guiry
Professional PlatformsORCIDTwitter

Professor Guiry’s key professional/work interests include the teaching of (organic) chemistry to third and fourth level students, the training of under- and postgraduate students in synthetic chemistry and the supervision of PhD students, visiting international students and postdoctoral researchers.

Pat’s  research group focuses on synthetic organic chemistry, with interests / expertise in both the development of asymmetric synthetic methodology through the design and application of new chiral ligands in homogeneous metal-catalysed transformations and in the total synthesis of compounds of biological interest. His programme includes the use of nature as an inspiration for the design and synthesis of a family of stable lipoxin A4 analogues for the resolution of inflammation. Key skills include the structure identification / confirmation of compounds synthesised / isolated through the application of the full breadth of modern spectroscopic and analytical techniques.

Current projects focus on the conversion of waste material from the agri-food industry into higher value chemicals, the employment of CO2 as a C-1 synthon, the design of novel organocatalysts, the synthesis of potential anti-cancer agents and novel anti-inflammatories.


Full Professor of Synthetic Organic Chemistry

Professor of Synthetic Organic Chemistry

Associate Professor of Chemistry

Assistant Professor of Chemistry

Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Oxford

PhD in Chemistry: University College Dublin

BSc (Hons) in Chemistry: University College Dublin

Yurii Gun’ko graduated from the Chemistry Department of Moscow State University in 1987. He also received his Ph.D degree in Inorganic Chemistry from Moscow State University in 1990. Then he worked as a lecturer in Chemistry in Belorussian Institute of Technology (Belarus). In 1994 he received a postdoctoral position in the group of Professor M.F. Lappert in the University Sussex (UK). In 1995, he was awarded Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship and worked in the University of Magdeburg (Germany) with Professor F. T. Edelmann. After that he returned to the University Sussex and worked as a postdoctoral researcher. In 1999, Yurii moved to the Chemistry Department of Trinity College Dublin (Ireland) to take up the position of lecturer in Inorganic Chemistry. He is currently the holder of the established Chair of Inorganic Chemistry (1922). His main research interests and activities are: nanomaterials synthesis, magnetic nanostructures, plasmonic and quantum dot based materials.


PhD, Inorganic Chemistry, Moscow State University, Russia

MSc, Chemistry, Moscow State University, Russia

Kevin O’Connor is Director of BEACON SFI Bioeconomy Research Centre, a Principal Investigator in the UCD Earth Institute and a Full Professor in the School of Biomolecular and Biomedical Science, UCD.  He is chairperson of the scientific committee for the €4 billion public-private partnership Biobased Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU), a former member of the European Commission biobased products expert group and a previous member of European Commission committee entitled the “lead market initiative for Bio-based products (2008-2011).

Kevin’s research interests are integrated biorefining, biobased chemicals, microbial biotechnology, biodegradable polymers, biocatalysis and protein engineering.  He has published over 100 international peer review articles and made of over 200 contributions at national and international conferences. He has filed 8 patents and successfully licensed 3 technologies resulting from his research work. Kevin is the founder of Bioplastech, a university spin out company endeavouring to commercialise the conversion of residues and biobased resources to biodegradable polymers, and Nova Mentis, a second campus company established to commercialise a novel antioxidant with health promoting properties.

Professor O’Connor was a leading driver of the development of the €6M rural Bioeconomy campus at Lisheen, Co. Tipperary, and the Irish EU Model demonstrator region for the sustainable production of chemicals.


PhD, Microbiology, University College Cork

BSc, University College Cor

Professor Eoin Casey is currently based in the UCD School of Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering. He leads a research programme aimed at developing new and improved processes for the bioeconomy and for water/wastewater treatment. His research output spans fundamental research (funded by ERC, IRC and SFI) to applied research (funded by Enterprise Ireland & industry) through to successful commercialisation with patenting & licencing. One of his flagship achievements was the development the reaction engineering framework and scale-up strategy for the MABR, a wastewater treatment technology that uses 75% less energy than existing technology. This technology has been commercialised by OxyMem Ltd. OxyMem has won numerous national and international awards and is a Global Cleantech 100 company.


Ph.D., University College Dublin.

B.E. (Chemical), University College Dublin

Professor Tiwari is a principal research officer at Teagasc. His primary research interests relate to novel food processing, extraction and preservation technologies, with a strong focus on green and sustainable solutions to food industry challenges. His research focuses on extraction and biotransformation technologies with particular reference to extraction of biomolecules from food by-products and waste streams.

Brijesh was previously a Senior lecturer of Food Engineering at the Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) and an International Visiting Researcher to the faculty of Food Engineering at Indian Institute of Crop Processing Technology, India.

Professor Tiwari led ab initio his Advanced Food Processing Technology Research Group, which, through development and funding success, has become a strong multidisciplinary group with an excellent track record in delivering high quality research and innovation metrics.

Brijesh is an elected Fellow of Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC, UK), Fellow of Institute of Food Science & Technology (IFST, UK), Fellow of Association of Food Scientists & Technologist (FAFST, India) and member of other key international professional bodies. Internationally recognised reputation for food processing research as evidenced by his publication profile (>150 papers published, h-index = 45 – Web of Science), invitations to join editorial boards and appointments to editorial positions in leading journals. He is Editor in Chief of the Journal of Food Processing and Preservation (Wiley) and Guest Editor of several SCI journals and a Book Series Editor of IFST Advances in Food Science (Wiley).


2006 – 2009:
PhD (Food Engineering), UCD School of Agriculture, Food Science and Veterinary Medicine University College Dublin. Thesis supervisor: Prof Colm O’Donnell

2002 – 2003:
MSc (Food Technology), Central Food Technological Research Institute, Mysore, India

1997 – 2001:
BSc (Hons) Agriculture and Animal Husbandry, Govind Ballabh University of Agriculture and Technology, Pantnagar, India