Thanks to continued research funding, Martín will continue to advise a research group at Umeå University in Sweden, whose members belong to the platform Bio4Energy Biopolymers and Biochemical Conversion Technologies.
Notably, an encompassing project on biorefinery production from quinoa residues and capacity building for the bioeconomy; which is a collaboration with the Bolivian Universidad Mayor de San Andrés; will continue for at least another five years.
“It is kind of a dream [that I have] to be a bridge between the research communities of Sweden and Norway”, Martín told Bio4Energy Communications in an online interview.
Taking up his new position, Martín will also start a new role as a member of a new European Union initiative to promote raw materials for biorefinery based on different types of organic waste.
With these moves, Martín’s research focus will be biorefinery production from agricultural residues. He said he felt this made sense, since the INN University is sitting right a main Norwegian area for agriculture, Hedmark. This is in southeastern Norway.
“I think this is a promising geographical area for biorefinery production”, Martín said.
While with Bio4Energy at Umeå, Sweden he and his colleague professor Leif Jönsson won acclaim by the global research community for their work to reduce the negative effects of harsh substances in the pre-treatment of biomass from coniferous trees destined for advanced biofuel production to ethanol.
Going to Norway will be similar to starting all over again, Martín mused. He said he expected to start by building resources by applying for funding and setting up a laboratory. He should have hired his first group member by next autumn and would start doing research and teaching in connection with that.
Would he accept being an ambassador for Bio4Energy in Norway, I asked and the answer was immediate;
“I shall be pleased”.