It's finally done! I began a PhD thinking one finished with a "big bang" of the viva voce, with its teeming discussion with your examiners and, afterwards, continuing the debate over drinks. It turns out you leave a PhD by a series of bangs and whimpers, from the original submission, through the viva, corrections, exam … Continue reading PhDone
This blog post is a condensed version of a research article published on 7th October in VOLCANICA. You can find the full article here. It's fully open-access and free to download. Volcanoes present one of nature’s most spectacular sights and, while most of us would be hugely impressed by the breathtaking spectacle of the flames, … Continue reading Fireside Tales
Coming to the end of a PhD is a strange event. Unlike the closure granted by the final exam and graduation party of an undergraduate degree, finishing a PhD involves a number of milestones along an interminable path: compiling the first thesis draft, receiving all your supervisors' comments, finishing your conclusions, submitting the paperwork, uploading … Continue reading Featured post: the “ExPhDition”
Find my research inside in the form of a fun poster!
"It came to me in a dream." This sentence has been the explanation given by visionaries throughout history for their inspiration: religious mystics, Frank Ocean, this amazing footnote. But as the rudder that steers the passage of a career in an ordinary life? That seems foolhardy. And yet ... such dreams can clarify subconscious desires. … Continue reading When to weigh anchor
Since coming to Guatemala, I have been consumed by mastering a song by Natalia LaFourcade. It’s called “Soledad y el Mar” (Loneliness and the Sea). With its lulling lyrics and its swaying rhythm, it’s the perfect bittersweet tune to play before bed. Week Three (25th Feb - 2nd Mar) was the week I finally cracked … Continue reading Soledad y el Mar
For my first blog post while in Guatemala this spring, I thought I would write about scales of time and distance. It’s something I think a lot about, especially because my research is split between two distant countries, and because 2.5 years into my PhD, I have rather more time to reflect on than to … Continue reading A sense of scale
At some point in the second year of your PhD, there comes a wave of fear. I learned about this phenomenon in my first months here: while preparing coffee in the Common Room, friends would whisper of mysteries like "The Second-Year Blues", or "The Valley of Shit". Now that I'm in their position, I get … Continue reading Holding back the wave
According to my front page, I last published a post six months ago. Yikes! Keeping up a regular blog was one of my resolutions for last year that fizzled out. That isn't to say that writing has completely slipped my mind. Quite the opposite: there have been many moments in 2017 that I really wanted … Continue reading Return to writing
Last month, I had the opportunity to participate in several outreach events around Bristol. With Cotham School Science Club, I made baking soda volcanoes and played risk with party poppers; I gave an interview on the Love & Science BCfm Radio show (May 15th podcast); I prepared for Bristol Doctoral College's "Research without Borders" Showcase … Continue reading What is the purpose of outreach?