Ms. Sophie Clayton
Sophie leads a small team of public relations specialists to help promote and share IRRI's work.
She helps provide strategic communications support for IRRI and works with the Public Relations team todevelop and implement IRRI-wide communication initiatives and provide professional communication services and support. She is also involved in media relations, writing, branding, issues management, Website content and development, and social media . She is also currently the IRRI publisher for the magazine, Rice Today.
Sophie works with many other communication professionals across IRRI to help deliver a full compliment of communication services to the Institute.
Sophie has extensive experience in science communication and public relations—with a focus on plant, agricultural, and natural sciences.
While pursuing her bachelor's degree, she worked in science as a laboratory and field technician, among other activities, through which her interest in applying science to improve agricultural practices and the environment grew.
At the Southern Tablelands Farm Forestry Network—a non-profit organization in Australia—she worked with farmers and other professionals to promote and better understand integrating trees into farming systems to help improve farm sustainability and profitability.
In a further shift towards science communication, she took up a position at CSIRO—Australia’s national science agency—to promote and communicate CSIRO's work on the plant sciences. During her time at CSIRO, she contributed to Web site development and media relations, helped manage issues, did extensive writing for various audiences and publications, and prepared exhibits. She also spent time working at CSIRO’s Government Relations and helped edit CSIRO’s environmental magazine, ECOS.
- Graduate Certificate (marketing), University of Canberra, 2008-09
- Graduate Certificate (science communication), Australian National University, 2000-03
- Bachelor of Science (resource and environmental management), Australian National University, 1993-96
- Public Relations Manager, IRRI, 2009-present
- Communications Manager, CSIRO Plant Industry, 2007-09
- Communications Officer, CSIRO Plant Industry, 2000-07
(included secondment to Government Relations and as Assistant Editor to ECOS magazine)
- Coordinator, Southern Tablelands Farm Forestry Network, 1996-2000
- Laboratory and field technician, CSIRO Plant Industry, 1994-96
- Herbarium assistant, CSIRO Plant Industry, 1993-94
- Farm technician, CSIRO Plant Industry, 1992-93