How supercomputers are improving global food security

November 2015

Talk length:

11.11mins

How supercomputers are improving global food security | Laura Boykin | TEDxPerth

Laura uses genetic data to combat a major cause of food insecurity in sub-Saharan Africa. By understanding the whitefly’s evolution and discovering genetic variations in the whitefly species, Laura has developed ways to combat their damaging effect on cassava.

Using genomics and supercomputing, Laura helps smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa protect this most important crop. She also works to equip African scientists with the tools to tackle future outbreaks.

Laura Boykin is an American computational biologist and an Assistant Professor at the University of Western Australia. She is also a TED Fellow.

Laura completed her PhD in Biology at the University of New Mexico while working at Los Alamos National Laboratory in the Theoretical Biology and Biophysics group. 

Laura Boykin
Computational biologist

Laura Boykin is an American computational biologist and an Assistant Professor at the University of Western Australia.

Laura uses genetic data to combat a major cause of food insecurity in sub-Saharan Africa. By developing an understanding of the whitefly’s evolution, Boykin’s research has identified important differences in whitefly species and has found ways to combat their damaging effect.

She uses genomics and supercomputing to help smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa control whiteflies which have caused devastation of local cassava crops. She also works to equip African scientists with both a greater knowledge of genomics and high-performance computing skills to tackle future outbreaks.

Laura completed her PhD in Biology at the University of New Mexico while working at Los Alamos National Laboratory in the Theoretical Biology and Biophysics group.