Keynote Speakers

Keynote Speakers

Alberto Urbaneja

The invasion of Trioza erytreae in the Mediterranean basin: current status, management achievements and further steps

Research Professor of Entomology.
Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Agrarias. IVIA. Spain

Alberto Urbaneja is Research Professor of the Plant Protection and Biotechnology Center at the Valencian Institute of Agricultural Research (IVIA). With over 25 years’ experience in agricultural entomology, he has been involved in research activities dealing with many aspects of sustainable pest management. His PhD in 1996 focused on conservation biological control in citrus. After his doctorate in 2000, he worked for Koppert Biological Systems, a leading company in biological control and pollination, first as a research entomologist and later as the coordinator of the Research and Development department. In 2003, he joined IVIA as a researcher. His principal research has focused on biological control of agricultural pests. In recent years his research goals have become focused on: 1) Functional biodiversity in agricultural ecosystems, 2) Polyphagous predators as key natural enemies (with special interest in zoophytophagous Miridae), 3) Biological control of invasive pests, 4) Sterile Insect Technique against Ceratitis capitata and 5) Crop resilience against pests through the induction of plant defenses. Alberto has published more than 400 articles, of which 153 are SCI. He has participated in 38 research projects and 18 of which he has been the PI. A considerable part of his work is dedicated to outreach, where his main goal is to transfer knowledge into the agricultural sector for the implementation of novel strategies based on research. In particular, his efforts in crops such as citrus, tomato, sweet pepper or persimmon have improved Integrated and Organic Pest Management protocols focused to reduce the use of pesticides. Alberto has supervised 15 doctoral theses focused on biological control of agricultural pests, of which 2 have obtained the extraordinary academic prize. His research work in Plant Protection has allowed him to be part of scientific committees and evaluation commissions, to be international consultant for pest outbreaks, and to be invited as the expert for the implementation of biological control programs in different part of the World. In addition, he has taken responsibility in management and in leading committees. Alberto was member and treasurer of the executive committee of the IOBC-Global, member of SEEA, coordinator of the Entomology Unit at IVIA, and from June 2013 until July 2021 he has been the head of the Plant Protection and Biotechnology Center at IVIA and member of the IVIA steering committee.

Eleftherios(Eris) Tjamos

Current problems and challenges in managing citrus diseases worldwide and in the Mediterranean region

Agricultural University of Athens, Department of Plant Pathology, Votanikos 11855, ATHENS, Greece


1967- BS and MS in Agronomy with major in Plant Pathology, Agricultural University of Athens, Greece 1974- Ph.D. in Plant Pathology- Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, University of London, U.K.

Researcher and University Teacher

1970-1987, Research Plant Pathologist, Benaki Phytopathological Institute, Kiphissia, Athens, Greece 1971-1974, Ph.D. Student, Imperial College of Science Technology and Technology, London, UK 1981-1982, Visiting Scientist, University of Lexington, Kentucky, USA- Host Pathogen Interactions 1993-Visiting Professor, Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, MD, USA- Biological Control of soil-borne pathogens 1987- Assistant Professor, 1991- Associate Professor, 1994- 2010, Professor of Plant Pathology, Department of Plant Pathology, Agricultural University of Athens, Greece 2010- Professor Emeritus of Plant Pathology, Agricultural University of Athens, Greece

Research Specialisation

Phytoalexins and induced resistance Biological control of plant diseases Verticillium Wilt with emphasis on Olives Soil solarisation and Methyl Bromide alternatives Mycotoxicogenic Fungi in Grapes and Wine Various others

Research Supervision in Agricultural University of Athens

Master Students directly supervised-55 PH.D. Students directly supervised -7

Academic Positions

Director of the Section of Plant Protection and Environment of the Agricultural University of Athens 2003-2005 Dean of the Faculty of Crop Science. of the Agricultural University of Athens 2005-2009

Memberships and Distinctions

Member of the American Phytopathological Society since 1989. Member of the IAPPS Member of the IS-MPMI President of the Mediterranean Phytopathological Union, 1991- 1994 1995-2000. President of the Hellenic Phytopathological Society, 1992-1996 and 2008-2012. Founder and Current President of the Hellenic Society of Phytiatry 2011

International Initiatives

Establishment of Plant Medicine (Phytiatry) as a University Science:

Organisation of Top International Congresses in Pathology

IX International Symposium on Soil and substrate disinfestation, Heraklion, Crete, 2018 (Tjamos and ISHS) XVI MPMI Congress On Molecular Plant Microbe Interactions, Rhodes Greece 2014. (Tjamos E.C., Kamoun S. and IS-MPMI). 10th International Verticillium Symposium 2009, Corfu, Greece, 2009. (Tjamos, Paplomatas, Tsitsigiannis, Antoniou and Tjamos) XII Mediterranean Phytopathological Congress, Rhodes Greece 2006. (Tjamos E.C. and MPU) 8VI International Symposium on Soil and substrate disinfection, Corfu, Greece 2004. (Tjamos, Gullino and Katan Induced Systemic Resistance in Plants Corfu, Greece 2000. (Tjamos, Metraux, Valoon, Kuc, Kloepper and Hammersmith) 7th International Verticillium Symposium Cape Sounion, Athens Greece 1997. (Tjamos and Paplomatas) Olive diseases conference, Cape Sounion, Athens Greece 1993 (Tjamos Graniti and Smith) NATO ARW on Biological Control of Plant Diseases-Progress and Challenges for the Future 1991. Cape Sounion, Athens Greece (Tjamos, Papavizas and Cook) NATO ARW on Vascular Wilt Diseases 1988. Cape Sounion, Athens Greece 1988. (Tjamos E.C. and Beckman C.) NATO ASI on Active Defense Mechanisms in Plants, Cape Sounion, Athens Greece 1980. (Wood RKS and Tjamos E.C.)


Darren J. Kriticos

Climate change and citrus pests

Professor Darren Kriticos is an ecological modeller whose research has been centred on developing and applying ecological models to study invasion biology and pest management under current and future climates. His broad interests span a range of applied ecological questions in fields as diverse as biosecurity, climate adaptation, food security and food safety.  During his PhD on climate change and woody weeds he was “distracted” by a project to help build a population dynamics model of a fruit fly pest of citrus.  In recent years he has been heavily involved in the FF-IPM project, co-leading the risk modelling work package.
Darren believes strongly in the value of developing and applying generic solutions to solving ecological modelling problems. This is reflected in his efforts to develop CLIMEX and DYMEX.  His present efforts are focused on developing real-time pest forecasting systems to enable the agricultural sector to better manage pests, weeds and diseases.  He has more than 20 years’ experience working for CSIRO in Australia.  He has recently started a company, Cervantes Agritech, to create real-time pest forecasting systems.

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