PubhD Newcastle: 23rd November 2017

PubhD team member Rosie gives a recap of the November 207 event in Newcastle.

On Thursday 23rd November 2017, PubHD Newcastle returned to its haunt at the Town Wall. Over 20 PhD students and their colleagues braved the cold northern winds and enjoyed an evening of three varied and exciting speakers from a number of disciplines, as well as an opportunity to network and discuss their own projects also. We were delighted to welcome both speakers and students from across the North East – Newcastle, Northumbria and Durham were all represented at the event, as were disciplines ranging from law to engineering.

The first speaker of the evening was Merrel Knox, a PhD student and graduate tutor from Northumbria University, who discussed the role of leadership in dangerous contexts.She came armed with a selection of anecdotes from her experiences in the field, conducting focus groups with established teams within the emergency services, and gave us some fantastic advice for conducting qualitative research.

After a short break, we heard from our second speaker, Adam Robinson from Durham University. Having just completed his viva, Adam presented his research on techniques used to map the structure and shape of the ocean floor using seismic waves. He provided some useful tips – do not attach your dynamite to a table and light it! – and wonderfully clear explanations as to how these techniques worked, including caves, hot dates, and dead hamsters.

Our final speaker of the night was Piyush Dhawankar, an engineering student from Northumbria University. His research involved the very topical and futuristic ideas behind developing a model of communication between driverless cars, with the aim to make them safer and more viable to the market. The wide scope of his topic was seen in the questions, which crossed everything from computer science to business!

The event provided a fantastic opportunity to hear about the work going on outside of our own disciplines – and even our institutions! The audience was supportive, enthusiastic and engaged, and the speakers did a great job at making their work accessible for everyone there. Look out for our next event in February 2018!

Pictures by Rosie Hodsdon and Laure-Elise Mayard.


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