EU Ambassador visits the SapienCE team

“You really could go on and on about this! It is very interesting to learn a bit about you work here”, EU Ambassador Thierry Béchet said when he was visiting the SapienCE Centre.

EU-ambassador Thierry Béchet said when he was visiting the SapienCE Centre
EU AMBASSADOR VISITS SAPIENCE: From left: Rector Dag-Rune Olsen, Carin Andersson Dahl, Eystein Jansen, Magnus M. Haaland, EU Ambassador Thierry Béchet, pro-rector Margareth Hagen, Markus Sebastian Hole, Adviser at the European Union Delegation to Norway. From left row two: Ståle Berglund, Silje Evjenth Bentsen and Senior Advisor Jon Håkon Øen
Janne-Beate Buanes Duke

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Rector Dag-Rune Olsen and pro-rector Margareth Hagen accompanied Béchet on his tour around campus. The ambassador was visiting the University of Bergen to get an insight into some of the projects supported by the EU.  Ståle Berglund, the Administrative leader at SapienCE Centre, was pleased that the ambassador also wanted to stop for a presentation at the Centre.

Multi-disciplinary research

- It is always a pleasure when people want to come and learn about the research we do here on early human origins. Since we opened a year ago, the research-team has come across some new interesting discoveries. They have also published several high-profile articles, so we have a lot to share, said Berglund smiling.

Eystein Jansen, one of the principal investigators at SapienCE, gave a general presentation about the SapineCE project, explaining how the Centre is conducting multi-disciplinary research in search for new answers about how and when we became modern human beings.

“We are very lucky because we have managed to get some of best researchers in the world to be part this project. I guess questions about how we have developed into who we are today, is something that is both important, and fascinating to most of us”, Jansen said.

A result of ERC funding

The SapienCE centre is in many ways a result of earlier funding for frontier research through the ERC (The European Research Council). Several of the key scientists at the SapienCE Centre have received ERC grants from the EU. Christopher Henshilwood, director of the SapienCE Centre, and Kenneth Hugdahl, who is a neuro-psychologist at the Faculty of psychology, have both received the Advanced Grant from the ERC, and Henshilwood´s project lay the foundation for the ideas that started SapienCE. Eystein Jansen, from the Dep. of Earth Science and Bjerknes Centre, has an ongoing ERC synergy grant wherefrom key persons in the climate group of SapienCE were recruited, and Nele Meckler also working in this group has an ERC Starting Grant.

“The SapienCE project is combining skills of cutting-edge scientists from UiB in archaeology, chronology, micromorphology, climate reconstruction and modelling, and the cognitive and social sciences. Together this will contribute to a new understanding of early human behavior”, Jansen explained.

Proud SapienCE- follower

Magnus Mathisen Haaland, Postdoctoral fellow and part of the SapienCE team, had prepared a presentation about the most significant discoveries that has been uncovered from the sites in South Africa. He also introduced some of the state-of-the-art methods they have developed to analyze the findings.

-This is all extremely fascinating. We are very proud of the work you do here, and I am looking forward to follow your project and to learn about new discoveries in the years to come, Rector Dag-Rune Olsen said.