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Kew hosts first ever State of the World’s Fungi Symposium

Scientists and policy-makers from all around the globe gathered at Kew 13 – 14 September to explore and discuss current knowledge of fungi and the major issues affecting fungal diversity and abundance.

In conjunction with the release of the cutting-edge State of the World’s Fungi report, over 260 plant and fungal scientists, ecologists, conservationists and policy experts came together over two days to discuss the issues raised within the report.

The symposium, which made “Mycological history”, was centred around seven questions and highlighted the significance of fungi to all life on Earth:

  1. Conservation of fungi: what, why, where and how?
  2. Does all plant life depend on fungi?
  3. And have you forgotten the lichens?
  4. Do fungi provide a greater ecosystem service or disservice?
  5. Fungal networking – who benefits?
  6. Panning for gold in the mould: where do we find commercial value in fungi?
  7. Exploring the dark taxa: when does a molecular signature become a species?

The international line-up of invited speakers featured 28 experts from 12 countries, and all delivered a fascinating insight into the importance of the Kingdom Fungi. Each session was followed by a panel Q&A to initiate a deeper dialogue. 

Talks were recorded and will be available to view soon.

Download and read the State of the World's Fungi report.