Professor Caroline Dean has made a huge contribution to the study of developmental timing in plants. Her work has focused on the mechanism by which prolonged cold influences flowering. Her discoveries have broad significance in the fields of epigenetics, co-transcriptional regulation and evolutionary biology. Her laboratory also played a major role in developing tools for the reference plant Arabidopsis thaliana. Caroline has taken major leadership roles nationally and internationally and her work has been recognised by election to EMBO, the Royal Society, US National Academy, Leopoldina Academy, the FEBS/EMBO Women in Science award, award of an OBE and the Genetics Society Medal.