ESOF 2020 Special Issue is sponsored by
Ilaria Capua is full professor and Director of the One Health Center of Excellence at the University of Florida. Veterinarian by training and virologist by passion, she has also been a Member of the Italian Parliament for over three years (2013-2016). She is a regular columnist for the Italian mainstream press and the author of several books.
In her career as a virologist she dedicated most of her professional life to viral infections of animals that can be transmitted to humans and pioneered genetic data sharing to improve pandemic preparedness. She has authored over 220 publications in peer reviewed journals and has published scientific books on Avian Influenza and Newcastle disease and six books for the general public. She is now focusing on a novel, broader approach to health known as Circular Health which aims to co–advance the health of humans, animals, plants and the environment by exploiting the big data environment.
Ilaria Capua was invited as keynote and featured speaker at the last edition of ESOF in Trieste. In the following 4 pieces of interview, she talks about different issues related to the link between the COVID-19 crisis, science and society.
First, she discussed about the changes we have seen and the potential for global solutions this pandemic brought to the scientific community: “this crisis kicked the scientific community much harder, was managed in a complete emergency, we were not prepared. However, this is a transformational event, that will completely change our everyday life.” As a solution, Ilaria proposes to put health at the center of our priorities as society.
Second, she presents her views about the way the pandemic offered us a new different approach to climate change and environmental protection. She highlights that the economy was incredible affected, but we are also seeing that mother nature is alive and kicking: “If we are able to give it a break, we can build a new way forward which is more respectful of mother nature.”
Third, she narrates the way she prepared her message for ESOF 2020 Trieste’s audience: “As a European scientist, it is important to speak with my fellow Europeans.” She remarks we should rethink leadership in Science.
Fourth and finally, she talks about the importance of spreading science information in a platform as ESOF that brings multiple societal stakeholders together. She mentioned: “It is important we engage with the world outside scientist. We have now the attention towards science and scientific matters, therefore we should take advantage of this moment.”
Watch the video interviews in the links below!
These interviews are part of a Special Issue about ESOF 2020 – held in Trieste, Italy from 2 to 6 September 2020.
Interview and video by Federica Bressan