Jacob Malone – Science supervisor

Name: Jacob Malone

Location: John Innes Centre, Norwich

What do you do?

I do a lot of different things, though none of them are lab-bench science anymore. I’m a bit of a Jack-of-all-trades really – I write papers, and apply for grant funding to keep the lab running, I coordinate the science and projects of other people, and I provide advice and discuss student’s projects with them. It really depends on the level of the project as to how much I am involved. For example, with post-doctorates we can have a high-level conversation and then they can go off and do what they need to do themselves but with undergraduate students I take on more of an active supervisory role, making sure they are doing what they should be! I also peer review a lot of papers; this means reading a paper someone has produced about their research and determining what’s good or what needs to be changed. I read quite a lot of scientific literature through this to keep up with everything. I give a lot of presentations about what we do in our lab. This year I get to go to Norway, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Atlanta in the US and Germany.

What do you see?

The view from our window isn’t very exciting at the moment! It used to be a tennis court for the JIC employees to use but now it’s a building site. Right now, they’re working on the new Quadram institute that will conduct research in food science, gut biology and health.

When I’m not doing science I…
Like board gaming a lot. I’m currently playing a game called Pandemic Legacy with a group of friends on Fridays and we’ve been doing that since June last year, it’s a very long game! I’m also in a role-playing group where we play a Star Wars game. It’s mostly a social thing, meeting up and having a laugh, it’s not like we dress up in costumes or anything. The other thing I really like doing is going around antique fairs finding 20th century stuff. I like poking about in various places and Norfolk is really good for it. I tend to go for 1950s and ‘60s unusual lamps and vases, and art deco furniture.