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The University of Southampton
Public Engagement with Research

Previous Research Cafes

Speakers have been drawn from all of the University's Faculties, from Lloyd's Register and other external organisations. Open up the sections below to find out what was discussed at previous Research Cafes (listed in alphabetical order by topic).

April 2021 - A special for World Book Night!

April 2021 (café number 40) - A special online event to mark World Book Night

Featured Philip Hoare talking about his new book Albert and The Whale

Recording of the event

March 2021 - The first online virtual café!

March 2021 (café number 39) - The first online virtual café!

A health themed cafe for Southampton Science and Engineering Festival goes digital 2021

Recording of the event

Covid-19 and what we can learn for ‘the next time’ with Dr Michael Head

March 2021 (café number 39) - The first online virtual café!

  • A health themed cafe for Southampton Science and Engineering Festival goes digital 2021

·         How is the world getting on with its pandemic response?

·         Why weren’t we better prepared?

·         A pandemic of inequalities – how inequalities (gender, wealth, ethnicity) affected how people were impacted by Covid-19

·         There will be another pandemic – will it be different next time?

Dr Michael Head's profile

Disrespect and abuse during childbirth with Kaveri Mayra

March 2021 (café number 39) - The first online virtual café!

  • A health themed cafe for Southampton Science and Engineering Festival goes digital 2021

·         What is obstetric violence?

·         Where is this happening in the world?

·         Why should we talk about experiences of abuse during childbirth?

·         What can be done to ensure every woman and person giving birth receives respectful care?

Kaveri Mayra's profile

Connecting communities to alleviate loneliness and social isolation with Dr Jaimie Ellis

March 2021 (café number 39) - The first online virtual café!

  • A health themed cafe for Southampton Science and Engineering Festival goes digital 2021

·         What is the role of communities in supporting health and wellbeing?

·         How is austerity affecting health and wellbeing: is tackling loneliness a luxury?

·         Are loneliness and social isolation feminist issues? How might gender inequalities affect who experiences loneliness and social isolation?

·         What needs to be considered when developing community-based initiatives to tackle loneliness and social isolation?

Dr Jaimie Ellis's profile

Air pollution and our health

May 2018 (café number 34) - Mettricks Old Town

National Clean Air Day special Research Café.

We were delighted to have world-leading respiratory disease expert Professor Stephen Holgate CBE as our keynote speaker, who spoke on "The health challenges of outdoor and indoor air pollution - the hidden public health problem of our time: what needs to be done".

There was also short talks from a range of people working on the effects of air pollution and what can be done to tackle the problem in Southampton:
Dr Matt Loxham - particulates and their effects on health
Dr James Dyke - imagining an environmentally safe and economically fair Southampton: the importance of clean air
- Josh Taylor, Solent Air Watch - citizen science (all welcome!), working to tackle air pollution in Southampton and the surrounding areas
- Sai Harrod, Mutrend Lab - social innovation to transform Southampton City Centre

A better, more connected city, with Clare Diaper (Transition Southampton), Rosie Cooper (Southampton Solent University) and Tony Curran (University of Southampton)

November 2017 (café number 31) – The Mitre

  • Carried-on the conversation from the World Café, which focused on “imagining a healthier, fairer, more positive Southampton”

For Claire Diaper's profile please click here.

For Rosie Cooper's profile please click here.

For Tony Curran's profile please click here.

A more sustainable city with James Dyke (University of Southampton)

November 2017 (café number 31) – The Mitre

  • Carried-on from The Race is On film preview and discussion, which is a Southampton-made film about tackling climate change by 2040

For James Dyke's profile please click here.

A healthier city, with Rob Kurn (Healthwatch Southampton manager) and Leila Scola (University of Southampton)

November 2017 (café number 31) – The Mitre

  • Discussion of Healthwatch, and the Ideas for Wellbeing project
  • Announcement of a new Community Health and Wellbeing Hub in Southampton, and asking what people want from it

For Rob Kurn's profile please click here.

Apples, oranges and tomatoes in the fruit salad - with Ida Petretta

March 2015 - Highfield Campus

  • This talk is not strictly about apples, oranges, tomatoes, or fruit salad, it is about comparison. What does it mean to compare?
  • Why should we care about comparison?

For Ida Petretta's profile please click here.

Alzheimer’s disease: a journey into the brain’s waste clearance system and failure with Nazira Albargothy

May 2017 - Coffee#1 

  • How are waste molecules/proteins cleared from the brain?
  • What happens if this clearance mechanism fails and how does it lead to Alzheimer’s disease?
  • What therapeutic interventions may aid clearance of these waste products from the brain?

For Nazira Albargothy's profile please click here

Biomedical engineering challenges of today - with Katarzyna Kuliga

December 2014 - Mettricks cafe

  • What are the biggest successes in biomedical engineering in the last 10 years?
  • How does biomedical engineering impact our life?
  • What are the challenges for biomedical engineers today?
  • What might they be in future?

For Katarzyna Kuliga's profile please click here.

Butterfly Extinctions & Human Baby Booms - with Dr Claire Dooley

April 2015 - Mettricks cafe

  • What do we mean by population dynamics?
  • Why is it important to understand the way a population changes?
  • What causes human and butterfly populations to change?
  • What patterns of population change do we see?


Can we change people's travel behaviour? - with Megan Streb, Sustrans

January 2016 - Mettricks cafe

  • What competing factors are in place when people choose how to travel?
  • What behaviour change techniques work?
  • Would those behaviour change techniques work in a Southampton-wide transport setting?
  • How will we know if our techniques have worked?

Climate Tipping Points: the point of no return? with Dr David Armstrong McKay

October 2016 - Mettricks cafe - as part of Southampton Sustainability Week

  • What are climate tipping points?
  • Why do tipping points happen?
  • How could tipping points affect us?
  • Can we predict tipping points in advance?

Hear the podcast here

Climate Change in the Arctic: is it unprecedented? - with Dr Maarten van Hardenbroek

June 2015 - Mettricks cafe

  • Is climate change affecting the Arctic?
  • Is this just another warm phase?
  • Can we use the past as analogue for the future?
  • It’s getting warmer, things are going to change, so what?!

For Dr Maarten van Hardenbroek's profile please click here.

Climate Conversations – with Dr Tony Curran and guests

The December 2015 and January 2016 Researchers’ Cafés in Mettricks café were themed Climate Conversations to link with the Paris Climate Change Conference and the wider efforts in Southampton to raise awareness and drive action in the City (summary here). Alongside the regular, climate change-themed topics general discussions took place, with speakers including Jenny Barnes who led the Southampton Climate Change Demonstration, Rebecca Kinge from Dangerous Ideas Southampton, Clare Diaper from Transition Southampton and Bob Whitmarsh from Winchester Action on Climate Change who wrote a useful summary of the outcomes of the Paris Agreement here.

Composite Ships – The Inspection Challenge - with Palaniappan Mathesan, Lloyd’s Register Senior NDE Specialist

March 2015 - Boldrewood Campus

  • Can composites replace steel in ships?
  • How easy is it to inspect composite ships?
  • Are current Non Destructive Examination (NDE) techniques effective?
  • What NDE techniques are emerging?
  • Can we learn from aerospace industry?

Contagious cancers and the immune system: a game of hide and seek with Alison Caldwell

May 2017 - Coffee#1 

  • What is a contagious cancer?
  • What threat do contagious cancers pose?
  • Can the immune system fight these contagious cancers?
  • How can we prevent the spread of contagious cancers?

For Alison Caldwell's profile please click here

Controlling emissions from passenger ships - with Max Wu, Senior Emission Specialist, Lloyd's Register

November 2015 - Boldrewood Campus - engineering theme

  • What are the emissions from passenger ships' funnels?
  • What do we do to control emissions from ships?
  • How can Selective Catalytic Reduction help?

Counterterrorism policy under Trump with Dr Chris Fuller

April 2017 - Mettricks cafe

  • Muslim ban
  • ISIS plan
  • JSOC and drones

For Dr Chris Fuller's profile please click here


Cyber-enabled ships; a fast approaching reality with Tim Kent, Technical Director - Marine + Offshore, Lloyd's Register

December 2016 - Boldrewod campus - Engineering theme

  • What do we mean by a cyber-enabled ship?
  • What is actually happening now in cyber-enablement?
  • What are the emerging regulatory frameworks for the cyber-enabled ship?
  • How can we assure performance for the cyber-enabled ship?

For Tim Kent's profile please click here

Cyber-enabled ships; understanding the risks - with Tania Berry, Senior Electrotechnical Specialist, Lloyd's Register

April 2016 - Boldrewood Campus

Dead Good Research Cafe

November 2018 - took place as part of Southampton's Dead Good Days Festival.

Deltas: sustainable environments or Atlantis? - with Frances Dunn

May 2016 - Highfield Campus - as part of the Festival of Doctoral Research

For Frances Dunn's profile please click here.

Dreaming of the Future on the Final Frontier with Tom Ellis, History

November 2016 - Mettricks cafe - Hope and Fear theme, as part of the Human Worlds festival

  • Does Humanity’s destiny lie in outer space?
  • What do visions of the future tell us about the societies they come from?
  • Why do nations spend vast sums of money on space exploration?
  • What does the Space Race tell us about the Cold War?

For Tom Ellis' profile please click here

Hear the podcast here

Drones, celebrities and privacy - with Paulina Sikorska

May 2016 - Highfield Campus - as part of the Festival of Doctoral Research

For Paulina Sikorska's profile please click here.

Edible Insects: The future of food and farming? - with Dr Jenny Josephs

December 2014 - Mettricks cafe

  • Will beef become a luxury food in the future?
  • What challenges do we face if we want to feed farm animals on insects?
  • The UK is small; how can we make it a competitive research and enterprise hub for the growing insect industry?
  • What skills can engineers, psychologists, biologists, lawyers, dieticians and marketing experts offer?

Encouraging eco-driving with in-vehicle information; absolute necessity, hopeful aspiration or unacceptable annoyance? - with Rich McIlroy

May 2015 - Boldrewood Campus

  • What use is eco-driving anyway?
  • Can we encourage drivers with in-vehicle information, and if so how?
  • Should we really be pushing certain types of behaviour?
  • Come on a tour of the Southampton University Driving Simulator, drive a Jaguar XJ Saloon and have a go with our eco-driving support yourself!


Equality, Diversity & Inclusion with Professor Colin Grant, Alex Melhuish, Joy Richardson and Jill Doubleday

February 2017 - Observatory, Building 85, Highfield campus

  • Equality, Diversity & Inclusion in the Univesity strategy
  • Unconscious bias: a get out of jail free card?
  • Gender identity and gender journeys
  • International students: English and other challenges

For Professor Colint Grant profile click here

For Alex Melhuish profile click here


Exploring the city - a future mine for metals? - with Sandra Mueller

November 2014 - Highfield Campus

  • Do we explore mining metals from the city today?
  • Are metals lost in any period significant to human beings?
  • What could residents do to access scarce metals? Can we obtain ethical fairly produced electronics?

Facing daily challenges: How can you keep your mind and body healthy? - with Dr Leanne Morrison and Dr Judy Joseph

January 2016 - Highfield Campus

  • What do you think and do when you’re feeling stressed? How does our mind influence our body?
  • Can we change the way we react to stress?
  • Should we avoid or accept stress?

For Dr Leanne Morrison's profile please click here. For Dr Judy Joseph's profile please click here.

Financial difficulties and mental health problems: which came first? - with Dr Thomas Richardson

January 2016 - Highfield Campus

  • Are debt and financial difficulties linked to mental health problems?
  • Do financial difficulties impact mental health or do mental health problems impact finances?
  • Might there be a vicious cycle? What might explain this relationship?


From the Dust - Mixing Stem Cells with Clay to Regenerate Human Tissue with Mohamed Mousa

May 2017 -  Coffee#1 

  • Why are we aiming to avoid the surgical routes for treating degenerative diseases?
  • What is the potential role of Stem Cells and Clay in this?
  • Will we be able to find the injectable Clay/Stem Cell formula to regenerate human tissues?
  • What are the promising impacts on the future of Medicine?

For Mohamed Mousa's profile please click here

Gamifying waste management - with Katie Patrick, Environmental Engineer, creator of ''

February 2015 - special Silicon Valley Researchers' Café

  • How do we increase environmental data literacy for trash?
  • How do we make zero waste living a commonplace behavior?
  • What kind of game mechanics can we apply to environmental data and zero waste behaviors?
  • How do we raise consciousness about the embodied environmental impact of items we throw out, rather than only focus on end of life?

Gender, nationalism, and journalism - with Holly Dunbar

November 2015 - Avenue Campus - humanities theme as part of the Being Human festival

  • How has the way men and women are discussed in the media changed?
  • How does this impact people's everyday lives?
  • What needs to be done?
  • What is being done?
  • Can individuals make a difference?

Getting value out of Big Data - with Donna Green CEng, General Electric

April 2015 - Mettricks cafe

  • What is big data?
  • What are the challenges and opportunities?
  • What is the current state of the art?
  • How do we use it to improve our lives?

Government By Populist Rhetoric with Professor Russell Bentley

April 2017 - Mettricks cafe

  • Can populists transition from opposition to government?
  • What does populist rhetoric mean in practice?
  • Is Trump all talk and no substance?
  • Will Trump’s populist rhetoric unite an electoral base?

For Professor Russell Bentley's profile please click here

Global sustainability versus personal responsibility - with Dr Tony Curran

November 2014 - Highfield Campus

  • Is human use of earth’s resources sustainable?
  • Is the planet doomed or will everything be fine?
  • What needs to be done? What is being done?
  • Can individuals make a difference?

For Dr Tony Curran's profile please click here.

Gravitational waves from neutron star mountains with Emma Osborne

June 2017 - Boston Tea Party

  • What are gravitational waves?
  • How do you make gravitational waves?
  • How do neutron stars grow mountains?
  • How tall are these mountains?

For Emma Osborne's profile please click here

Hamlet and revenge and cultural and religious beliefs in Pakistan - with Muazzam Sharif

November 2015 - Avenue campus - humanities theme as part of the Being Human festival

  • What is it about the play Hamlet that attracts comparison and adaptations around the globe?
  • How is Hamlet understood in Pakistan – an Islamic country where revenge is both current and pervasive?
  • Does it allow us to understand the emotive meaning of ‘revenge’ in a range of religious and cultural contexts?

For Mohammad Muazzam's profile please click here.

Hannah Arendt and the importance of religious experience in her political writing and thinking - with Dr Jonathan Leader

November 2015 - Avenue campus - humanities theme as part of the Being Human festival

  • Who was Hannah Arendt?
  • How important was religious experience in her political thinking/writing? 
  • What was Arendt’s sense of her Jewishness? Is Hannah Arendt – the gadfly, the public intellectual, the enemy of the state – deserving of our grace?


Helping reduce household energy consumption - with Dr Sharon Lin

January 2015 - Boldrewood Campus

  • Why do we need to reduce energy consumption?
  • How can we encourage people to do it?
  • What new technologies will help?
  • Can we better manage energy demand?

How Art and Creativity can be Inspiring with Jennifer Alderson and Ronda Gowland-Pryde

October 2016 - John Hansard Gallery, Highfield campus - coinciding with British Art Show 8 in Southampton

  • What does art mean to you?
  • In what way does art inspire people generally?
  • Creativity in solving problems in art and science
  • Art and science examples

Jennifer Alderson is Artist and Diagnosis Scientist

For Ronda Gowland-Pryde's profile please click here

How do I experience vibration with Jamal Kinsella

March 2017 - Mettricks Café - as part of the Southampton Science and Engineering Festival

  • How do you notice vibration through your body?
  • Is feeling vibration often enjoyable or unpleasant for you?
  • Where do you feel vibration in your body during car journeys?
  • Could it be possible to predict vibration discomfort by simply measuring the physical motion of body movement?

How do we break Ice and not the Propeller? The future of Ice Class and Ice Breaker propulsion design - with Stuart Hannam, Senior Specialist, MTES Engineering Systems, Lloyd’s Register

May 2015 - Boldrewood Campus

  • What is Ice Class?
  • How has damage been prevented in the past?
  • What is the future for ships operating in ice?
  • How do we try to stop propulsion system damage in the Rules and Regulations?

How do we research black holes with Dr Sadie Jones

March 2017 - Mettricks Café - as part of the Southampton Science and Engineering Festival

  • Why are black holes so interesting to the general public? And why is black hole research important?
  • Why do some black holes have jets? Shouldn’t everything get sucked in?
  • What is the difference between a supermassive black hole and a stellar black hole, other than size?
  • Could black holes be portals to other dimensions?

For Dr Sadie Jones' profile please click here

Is unpolluted air possible to obtain in a modern industrial society? - with Professor Ian Williams

April 2016 - Mettricks cafe

For Professor Ian Williams' profile please click here.

Krill poo – the carbon highway of the Southern Ocean? - with Anna Belcher

May 2015 - Highfield Campus

  • Why do we care about sinking krill poo?
  • How else does carbon get to the seafloor?
  • How do scientists collect krill poo?
  • Why should anyone but penguins care about the Southern Ocean?


Landfill-bound waste – can it replace fossil fuels? - with Dr Dhivya Puri

April 2015 - Mettricks cafe

  • Is human use of earth’s resources sustainable?
  • Can we use our rubbish as a resource to replace everything from plastics to petrol? Can we create a circular economy where everything is recycled and reused? How is this possible?
  • What is being done?

Life on earth: human contribution to biodiversity loss with Dr Tony Curran

June 2017 - Boston Tea Party

  • Why should we care about biodiversity?
  • How is biodiversity changing?
  • How are humans contributing to biodiversity loss?
  • What can people do to help protect nature?

For Dr Tony Curran's profile please click here

Life and death in the marine planktonic world - with Kyle Mayers

May 2015 - Highfield Campus

  • What are phytoplankton?
  • Why do we care about them?
  • How can we study them in the oceans?
  • Does it matter how and where they live and die?

For Kyle Mayers' profile please click here.

Light and Dark: Echoes of a Supermassive Black Hole with Sam Mangham

June 2017 - Boston Tea Party

  • Why are black holes ‘light and dark’?
  • What’s the point of black holes anyway?
  • How do we know so much about such distant objects?
  • Do astronomy & astrophysics have practical applications?


Making replacement body parts in the lab - with Dr Nick Evans

March 2015 - Highfield Campus

  • How do we address the shortage of tissues and organs for transplantation?
  • Can we harness stem cells to make new tissues? How do we make pieces of 3D tissue in the lab? Will it work?
  • Are there ethical questions?

For Dr Nick Evans' profile please click here.

Male-dominated syllabi in Higher Education - with Dr Giulia Felappi

Friday 11 March 2016 - Highfield Campus - as part of International Women's Week Southampton programme, in partnership with SUSU.

Measuring air pollution: at what cost? with doctoral researcher Florentin Bulot

May 2018 (café number 34) - Mettricks Old Town

·       Why is air pollution a problem?

·       How can we better assess air pollution in our cities?

·       What low-cost solutions are there? What are their obstacles?

·       Are there downsides of generating too much data?

For Florentin Bulot's profile please click here.

Neuromotor Rehabilitation - new technologies and challenges - with Dr Anna Soska

June 2015 - Mettricks cafe

Anna introduced the existing technologies in neuromotor rehabilitation and then discussed the future challenges in this research domain based on her own experience in developing a novel hand rehabilitation system.

For Dr Anna Soska's profile please click here.

New thinking on career success, with PhD researcher Hang Tran

·       What is career success?

·       Who can have career success?

·       How should career success be measured?

·       How can we empower everyone to achieve career success?

People and Brexit

November 2018 - as part of the University's Human Worlds Festival.

Permaculture: lazy gardening or the key to our survival? with Jenny Barnes

October 2016 - Mettricks cafe - as part of Southampton Sustainability Week

  • Why is organic not sufficient?
  • What good has permaculture done?
  • How can permaculture help with climate change?
  • How can we use permaculture locally, and on a larger scale?

Jenny Barnes is the main organiser of Southampton Sustainability Week

Hear the podcast here

Photonics: engineering your future with Matthew Posner

March 2017 - Mettricks Café - as part of the Southampton Science and Engineering Festival

  • Photonics: what’s it all about? Where can I find it?
  • Can we control light? How do we use it?
  • What do we need to make a photonic device?
  • Will we ever make an optical computer?
  • Why are photons being used for quantum technology?

For Matthew Posner's profile please click here

Pregnancy, identity and philosophy - with Dr Elselijn Kingma

February 2015 - Mettricks cafe

  • How should we conceive of the physical and metaphysical relationships between a pregnant women and her foetus?
  • What about the relationship between a woman and her future offspring – and between us and our mothers?
  • What do these relationships mean for moral relations and obligations during pregnancy and birth?

For Dr Elselijn Kingma's profile please click here.

Re-establishing the yin & yang of the immune system in the fight against cancer - with Dr Silvia Lanati

October 2015 - Nuffield Kitchen on Highfield Campus

  • How can cancer escape the immune defences?
  • Why does our immune system need help?
  • Is immunotherapy revolutionising cancer treatments? What still needs to be done?

Representations of male rape in family film with Isaac Gustafsson Wood, Film Studies

November 2016 - Mettricks cafe - Hope and Fear theme, as part of the Human Worlds festival

  • How has male rape been represented on film?
  • How do films aimed at a family audience represent male rape in a comedic way?
  • How does comedy impact on rape representations?
  • In the context of our ‘hopes and fears’ theme, what do these representations symbolise?

For Isaac Gustafsson Wood's profile please click here

Hear the podcast here

Road traffic and Southampton's poor air quality - with Matt Grote

April 2016 - Mettricks cafe


Ronald Reagan versus Donald Trump with Dr Jonathan Hunt

April 2017 - Mettricks Old Town Café

  • What myths in American history did Reagan (‘Morning in America’) and Trump’s (‘Make America Great Again’) rhetoric as presidential candidates draw upon?
  • Do Reagan’s difficulties with organization, leaks, and scandals during his presidency hold lessons for Trump?
  • Do Trump’s foreign policies thus far signal a return to or a rejection of Reagan’s?

For Dr Jonathan Hunt's profile please click here

Satellite imaging: its not just pretty pictures! - with Dr Robin Wilson

June 2015 - Mettricks cafe

  • What we can and can't see from satellites?
  • How scientific satellite images are different from Google Earth, and why they are important?

For Dr Robin Wilson's profile please click here.

Southampton University's Human Powered Submarine - with Sarah Neenan

January 2015 - Boldrewood Campus

  • What is a human powered submarine?
  • Why are we building a submarine?
  • What engineering challenges will we face?
  • How will submarine races help with underwater research and exploration?

For Sarah Neenan's profile please click here.

Sustainability issues with Dr Tony Curran

October 2016 - Mettricks cafe - as part of Southampton Sustainability Week

  • What are we doing to the planet that is not sustainable?
  • What impacts will we see? How will they affect earth, humans and other species?
  • What solutions can we come up with to tackle the causes, and to mitigate the consequences?
  • Musings on a sustainable future

 For Dr Tony Curran's profile please click here

Hear the podcast here

Sustainability of space-flight and improving it with our satellite - with Aleksander Lidtke

November 2015 - Boldrewood Campus - engineering theme

  • Does the way in which spacecraft are launched and flown affect the sustainability of mankind?
  • Can we just ignore this area of sustainability entirely, at least for a few decades?
  • How can we make spaceflight more sustainable?
  • What are people doing currently?
  • Can we, as the University, make a difference?

For Aleksander Lidtke's profile please click here.

Tackling the global asthma epidemic - with Dr Timothy Hinks

November 2014 - Highfield Campus

  • What is asthma?
  • What’s causing the current global epidemic?
  • How can we explore the immune system in real people with asthma?
  • What hope is there for a cure?

The ethics of global poverty with Dr Brian McElwee

March 2017 - Mettricks Café - as part of the Southampton Science and Engineering Festival

  • What is the moral relationship between people in affluent countries and the global poor?
  • What moral obligations, if any, do we have towards those living in severe poverty?
  • How should we decide which aid and development organisations to support?

For Dr Brian McElwee's profile please click here

The plastics pollution problem

March 2018 (café number 33) - Mettricks Old Town

• The Ocean Plastic Problem. Researchers explored questions such as what can individuals do to minimise plastic use? Where should the change come from? What needs to be done locally? What is being done?

• Creating plastics that don’t harm the world. Researchers explored questions such as is it possible to switch to bio-materials only? Is there enough ‘bio’ to go around? Can we reduce plastic use in the meantime – and how?

We also referred back to the ‘Plastic Ocean’ film and discussion that took place on Monday 12th, and did some live citizen science, tagging drone photos of UK beaches where plastic can be spotted, to contribute to the British Science Week’s Plastic Tide campaign.

The power of the 'acoustic bubble' with Mr Nikhil Mistry

December 2016 - Boldrewod campus - Engineering theme

  • What is an acoustic bubble?
  • Where can it be used?
  • How can it be used?
  • What is the future of their use?

For Mr Nikhil Mistry's profile please click here

The pressures of academic PG research with Prof Lusia Stopa, Dr John Lapage, and Andrea Pafford

January 2017 - the Bridge Bar on Highfield Campus - as part of the Student Union’s 'You Are More Than Your Thesis' programme for postgraduate researchers

  • The imagined self: what imagery can tell us about mental health and emotional well being
  • Combating Imposter Syndrome
  • The University's peer support scheme and other wellbeing services for PGRs

For Prof Lusia Stopa's profile please click here

Andrea Pafford is the Union Peer Support Coordinator at the University of Southampton


The Credibility of Science - with Dr Thomas Gall

October 2015 - Nuffield Kitchen on Highfield Campus

  • Are most scientific findings really wrong?
  • Do career concerns induce manipulation and bias?
  • Does science need an institutional revolution?
  • What needs to be done?
  • What is being done?
  • How can economics help?

For Dr Thomas Gall's profile please click here.

The Marine Engineering Connections project: engaging the public with marine and maritime issues - With Steve Dorney (University of Southampton) and Lizzie McCaig (Lloyd's Register)

March 2015 - Boldrewood Campus

  • Public engagement and outreach - why do it?
  • What makes a good piece of outreach?
  • Marine Engineering Connections began on the WightLink ferries – what happened next?
  • What’s happening now locally and nationally?

For Steve Dorney's profile please click here.

The quantum tech revolution - with Nathan Shammah

May 2016 - Highfield Campus - as part of the Festival of Doctoral Research

Time to bring Invasive Species off the Naughty Step? - with Steven Bourne

May 2015 - Highfield Campus

  • What are invasive species?
  • Do they deserve their much-maligned status?
  • Is people power the best way to stop the menace?
  • Is all out war better than compromise?

For Steven Bourne's profile please click here.

Trump’s Native American Policy with Dr Rachel Herrmann

April 2017 - Mettricks cafe

  • Does Trump have an Indian policy?
  • Why is the link between Trump and Andrew Jackson important?
  • How does the history of the U.S. Supreme Court fit into Trump’s policies on Indians?


Trump’s International Reputation & Anti-Trump Activism with Dr Charlotte Lydia Riley

April 2017 - Mettricks cafe

  • How has the Trump presidency affected the ‘special relationship’?
  • What form has anti-Trump activism taken at home & abroad?
  • Why have women been at the forefront of anti-Trump activism?
  • How will Trump’s presidency affect the international reputation of the USA?

For Dr Charlotte Lydia Riley's profile please click here

Trump’s War on Terror

April 2017 - Mettricks cafe

  • What is the Trump administration’s world view with regard to “radical Islamic terrorism”?
  • How does Trump’s approach to fighting the War on Terror differ from that of Obama?
  • Would Trump’s “Muslim ban” help American national security?
  • Was authorizing the CIA to undertake its own drone strikes a bad idea?

For Dr Chris Fuller's profile please click here

Types of air pollution and their potential effects on our health - with Dr Matt Loxham

April 2016 - Mettricks cafe

Unravelling gravity 100 years after Einstein - with Dr Marco Caldarelli

February 2015 - Mettricks cafe

  • What does an apple falling from its tree have in common with a weightless astronaut?
  • What does it teach us about the nature of space and time?
  • What are black holes?
  • What can we learn from them?
  • Beyond planets, stars and the cosmos, could gravity describe ordinary materials?

Using stem cells to study diseases that cause blindness with Dr Dave Christensen

June 2017 - Boston Tea Party

  • What are stem cells?
  • How can we produce retinal cells from stem cells?
  • How similar are cells grown in the lab to those in the eye?
  • What can we learn from studying retinal cells in the lab?


Waste management: the bigger picture - with Dr Tony Curran

February 2015 - special Silicon Valley Researchers' Café

  • What is the Waste Hierarchy?
  • Household waste is only ~10% of total waste: what about the rest?
  • How should furniture and appliances be disposed of?
  • Is a Zero Waste society a realistic aim?

For Dr Tony Curran's profile please click here.

Waste management and the move to zero waste - with Dr Tony Curran

March 2015 - Highfield Campus

  • What is the waste hierarchy and how can we move up it?
  • We should focus on the largest flows and most important materials - what are they?
  • Is a zero waste society a realistic aim?

For Dr Tony Curran's profile please click here.

Wellbeing - with Jayne Calvert

January 2016 - Highfield Campus

  • What is wellbeing?
  • How can I maintain my wellbeing?
  • What is on offer at the University of Southampton to support wellbeing?

What can Cryogenics and Superconductivity do for you? - with Jessica Spurrell

December 2014 - Mettricks cafe

  • Cryogenics – more than freezing aliens?
  • Superconductivity – the superpower of our generation?
  • Supergrids, smartgrids, microgrids – what will the power transmission network of the future look like?
  • What can we learn from the technology used at the CERN Large Hadron Collider?

For Jessica Spurrell's profile please click here.

What is dementia? - with Dr Ruth Bartlett

February 2015 - Mettricks cafe

  • A long-term health condition?
  • A disability?
  • God’s will?
  • A family crisis?
  • A growing market/industry?

For Dr Ruth Bartlett's profile please click here.

What is fossil fuel divestment and why does it matter? - with Mike Allwright

December 2015 - Mettricks cafe

  • Investing and divesting – are we betting for or against climate action?
  • Who’s divesting and why?
  • What about universities?
  • What do students think about how their tuition fees are invested?
  • Invest Positive UoS – working for ethical investment at the University of Southampton.


What planet are we living on? - with Dr James Dyke

January 2016 - Mettricks Cafe

  • Can Earth support 11 billion people?
  • What impacts will these people produce?
  • Will these impacts produce environmental disaster?
  • Why should we (in the UK) care about any of this?

For Dr James Dyke's profile please click here.

What’s yours, what’s mine & what’s theirs: A discussion on our global carbon footprints - with Dr Craig Hutton

December 2015 - Mettricks cafe

  • How should we really measure our carbon footprint?
  • How many people really live in India & the UK – you might be surprised... Where will we all live in 2050?
  • I met a farmer in Bangladesh….what might he say to you?

For Dr Craig Hutton's profile please click here.

Will fuel cells ever replace the internal combustion engine? - with David Inwood

October 2015 - Nuffield Kitchen on Highfield Campus

  • What are fuel cells and how do they work?
  • How do different types of fuel cell compare?
  • Where would they be used?
  • Why aren’t fuel cells more widely used?
  • When will we see fuel cell cars in Britain?

Will our coastal natural heritage disappear under sea-level rise? with doctoral researcher Salma Sabour

 ·      What is coastal natural heritage?

·       What are the threats endangering these sites?

·       What could happen in 100 years? 200 years? 300 years?

·       What solutions and adaptations could be used to help?

-  For Salma Sabour's profile please click here

Women in Film - with Sarah Smyth

Friday 11 March 2016 - Highfield Campus - as part of International Women's Week Southampton programme, in partnership with SUSU

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