Barbara Webb is Professor of Biorobotics at the University of Edinburgh. She investigates how insects perform flexible and robust behaviours, and implements the hypothesised mechanisms as robot controllers. This novel methodology has led to breakthroughs in understanding the brain circuits underlying insect navigation. She has used public interest in this work to promote science communication. At Edinburgh’s School of Informatics she has made important contributions as Director of the Graduate School and Director of the Institute for Perception, Action and Behaviour. Outside her scientific career she is active in music, performing with the medieval music ensemble Gaita, and in the visual arts.