Half a century of palynology at the University of Sheffield
Research into the then fledgeling scientific discipline of palaeopalynology was introduced to the University of Sheffield in 1949 following the appointment of Leslie Moore. A thriving Palynology Research School soon developed, and has fluorished to the present day. The development and subsequent evolution of the Sheffield Palynology School is described, with a commentary on how this mirrors (and, to a certain extent, has influenced) the general development of the subject area, that in itself reflects changing academic and industrial interests. More than 300 postgraduate students have graduated through the Sheffield Palynology School, and their these/dissertations are listed in full for the first time, providing an historical archive of palynological research undertaken in Sheffield.
Figures & Tables
Often regarded as the ‘Cinderella’ of palaeontological studies, palaeobotany has a history that contains some fascinating insights into scientific endeavour, especially by palaeontologists who were perusing a personal interest rather than a career. The problems of maintaining research facilities in universities, especially in the modern era, are described and reveal a noticeable absence of a national UK strategy to preserve centres of excellence in an avowedly specialist area. Accounts of some of the pioneers demonstrate the importance of collaboration between taxonomists and illustrators. The importance of palaeobotany in the rise of geoconservation is outlined, as well as the significant and influential role of women in the discipline. Although this volume has a predominantly UK focus, two very interesting studies outline the history of palaeobotanical work in Argentina and China.