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Blueprint: How DNA makes us who we are

Join Robert Plomin as he explores how DNA is more important than any other factor in influencing what makes you, you.

via Caroline Davis2010, Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Event description

Were your school achievements predicable at birth? Would you be the same person today if you'd been raised by another family? The nature vs nurture debate is evolving, and with the new era of personal genomics and DNA testing kits, it's more important than ever to find out what our DNA can really tell us about who we are. Join Robert Plomin as he explores the implications of the DNA revolution and what it means to discover that our genes are the single most powerful influence on what makes you, you. 

About the speakers

Robert Plomin is a leading behavioural geneticist who works at King's College, London. He has published more than 800 papers in scientific journals and is the author of the best-selling textbook in the field. In 2012, he was awarded a highly prestigious five-year Advanced Investigator Award from the European Research Council. He was the youngest president of the international Behaviour Genetics Association, and has been given lifetime achievement awards from that association as well the American Psychological Association and the Society for Research in Child Development, among others.

Your chair for the evening, Adam Rutherford, is a science writer and broadcaster. He studied genetics at University College London, and during his PhD on the developing eye, he was part of a team that identified the first genetic cause of a form of childhood blindness. He has written and presented many award-winning series and programmes for the BBC, including the flagship weekly BBC Radio 4 programme 'Inside Science' and 'The Curious Cases of Rutherford & Fry with Dr Hannah Fry'. He is the author of two previous books, Creation, which was shortlisted for the Wellcome Trust Prize, and A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived. 


The doors will open at approximately 6.30pm, with a prompt start at 7.00pm. There will be time for questions after the talk.

Latecomers will be admitted into the gallery.

Book signing

Copies of Robert's book, Blueprint: How DNA makes us who we are, will be available for purchase and signing after the talk.


This event will be filmed and on the Ri's YouTube channel within a few months. Subscribe for free to hear when new videos are released.