Our members and collaborators
I have worked on legumes since 1981 (I started young). I have been on the Crop Science staff of the University of Helsinki since 2007.
I grew up in Canada and earned my PhD in 1985 from the University of Cambridge, working on pollination problems in faba bean at the then Plant Breeding Institute. Thereafter I spent 6 years at the University of Adelaide and 9 years at the University of Sydney, then moved to the UK for a 4-year stint before coming to Finland.
I am an Ethiopian who received my PhD in Agriculture at the University of Helsinki in 2019, MSc degree in Agriculture (Horticulture) at Haramaya University in 2006, and BSc degree in Agriculture (Plant Sciences) at Alemaya University, Ethiopia, in 2002.
I am interested to understand the morpho-physiological basis of abiotic stresses in crop plants mainly: soil-acidity and Al3+-toxicity, drought, and salt tolerances. In my research, I apply phenotyping techniques to identify root and shoot markers expressed in crop plants in response to changing environments, under controlled and field conditions, at different stages of plant growth.
Currently, I am working in two ERANET SusCrop projects namely ‘ProFaba’ and LegumeGAP in which I am mainly entitled to identify acidity and Al3+-toxicity tolerant faba bean genotypes for European agriculture, in the first, and meta-analysis of literature in the second. Previously, I was working as a teaching and research staff of Haramaya and Bahir Dar Universities in Ethiopia.
I'm a second year PhD student focusing on the Vicia genus and vicine and convicine (V-C) production. Faba bean is the most well-known species of this genus, but it includes around 160 other species as well. V-C is an anti-nutrient that is found in faba bean and some of its closest relatives. My research involves finding out how widespread V-C production is in the Vicia genus and where in the phylogenetic tree the production started.