8th Oppenheimer De Beers Group Research Conference a resounding success

Delegates to the 8th Oppenheimer – De Beers Group Research Conference, held at De Beers’s Headquarters in Ormonde, Johannesburg this week, enjoyed a programme packed with a wide array of topics.

Internationally renowned and one of South Africa’s first environmental historians, Professor Emeritus Jane Carruthers delivered the key note address on the first day, titled A Century of Research in South Africa.

 E Oppenheimer & Son Directors, Jonathan and Nicky Oppenheimer and Professor Emeritus Jane Carruthers 

The keynote address on the second day by Prof Norman Owen-Smith, one of South Africa’s leading mammologists, dealt with the contributions from GPS telemetry to ecology and conservation.

Prof Norman Owen-Smith

The award for best conference presentation went to Riaan Rifkin of the Department of Genetics, Center for Microbial Ecology and Genomics at the University of Pretoria,  for his fascinating paper on ancient human and pathogen DNA found in South African archaeological sendiments, while  Sean Heighton’s illustration on using geographic  traceability as a conservation tool against the scaly trade in pangolins won the award for the best poster.

Riaan Rifkin

Closing the conference, De Beers Consolidated Mines Ltd Chairman, Nicky Oppenheimer, said the diversity of conference topics offered  delegates the opportunity to step outside their small worlds of expertise and listen to others doing totally different things, allowing them to catch a spark and open up their own worlds.

Nicky Oppenheimer presenting the award for best poster to Sean Heighton

Mpumi Zikalala, Vice-President of De Beers Sightholder Sales, South Africa, delivering the opening address 

Photographer: Albert Froneman

By | 2017-10-20T06:50:36+00:00 October 19th, 2017|Sake|