close icon

What's on


Lecture: The Ethnobotanic Story of Rattan by Dr John Dransfield (United Kingdom), ethnobotanist and Honorary Research Fellow, Royal Botanic Gardens Kew

25 Aug 2018, Sat 11:00 AM - 12:30 PM
The Single Screen, Block 43 Malan Road

With over 600 species, rattan is astonishingly diverse with its main centre of distribution in Southeast Asia and the Malay Archipelago. Uses of the plants range from medicine to cigarette papers, from basket weaving to cane furniture. Leading rattan expert Dr John Dransfield will talk about unsustainable harvesting, the expansion of the oil-palm industry, the possibilities of smallholder cultivation, and what it means for the future of rattan furniture and the handicraft industries.  



Dr John Dransfield (United Kingdom) graduated at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge University, gaining his PhD under Professor E.J.H. Corner in 1970 with a study of two Malaysian palm genera, Eugeissona and Johannesteijsmannia. He devoted his working life to palm research, working first in Indonesia for four years specialising in rattan, the climbing palms that are the source of cane for cane furniture. In 1975 he continued palm research at the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew where he was head of Palm Research until his retirement in 2005. Dransfield is Honorary Research Fellow at Kew and author of several books on palms (including rattan) and numerous scientific papers.



Image credit: Courtesy John Dransfield.