RPC, 3MT and UGS Award Winners 2018


The annual University Graduate School Awards event took place on Tuesday 19 June 2018. The event saw the traditional announcement of the Excellence in Supervision award and the Michael K. O'Rourke prize for best PhD publication by Professor Gavin Schaffer, Director of Graduate Studies, and Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and Knowledge Transfer Professor Tim Softley. Full details of the winners are given below.

The UGS has also recently held the annual Research Poster Conference, where 99 postgraduate researchers presented their research, and the University of Birmingham Three Minute Thesis competition.

Congratulations to all of you who were shortlisted for awards, competed in the Three Minute Thesis final, or won a prize at the Research Poster Conference.

Award for Excellence in Doctoral Research Supervision

These awards recognise the significant contribution made by academic supervisors to the successful completion of high-class doctoral research at the University. Winning supervisors receive a £100 prize. The winners for 2018 are:

  • Dr Erin Sullivan (College of Arts and Law)
  • Professor John Bryson (College of Social Sciences)
  • Dr Michael Burrows (College of Engineering and Physical Sciences)
  • Dr Julie Christian (College of Life and Environmental Sciences)
  • Dr Emma Frew (College of Medical and Dental Sciences)

The Michael K. O'Rourke prize for best PhD publication

This is a prestigious award for postgraduate researchers who have made an outstanding contribution in terms of a publication during the course of their research. Each College winner receives £400. This year's winners are:

Research Poster Conference winners

The Research Poster Conference is the flagship event for the University Graduate School. Postgraduate researchers from across the Colleges come together in the Great Hall of the Aston Webb Building to present their research to fellow researchers, a panel of judges and members of the public. The 2018 winners are:

  • The Overall Winner: Hannah Briscoe from the College of Arts and Law
  • The College of Arts and Law Winner: Celine Hoquet
  • The College of Engineering and Physical Sciences Winner: Fatma Keskin
  • The College of Life and Environmental Sciences Winner: Gavin Trotman
  • The College of Medical and Dental Sciences Winner: Justyna Czarnocka
  • The College of Social Sciences Winner: Jeannette Rodgers
  • The Best Poster Winner: Chiara Cervasio from the College of Social Sciences
  • The Best Presentation Winner: Kate Schenck from the College of Social Sciences
  • The Public’s Choice Winner: Niven Whatley from the College of Arts and Law
  • The Social Media Engagement Winners (#uobRPC18):
    • Luis Freijo from the College of Arts and Law
    • Andy Sanderson from the College of Life and Environmental Sciences

Three Minute Thesis live final winner

Three Minute Thesis was first developed by the University of Queensland and is now an international presentation competition. Researchers are asked to present their thesis to a non-specialist audience, in an interesting and engaging way with a very strict time limit - go one second over and you are disqualified!

Ten finalists made it through the heats, and Ella Hawkins from the Shakespeare Institute was voted as the winner by the judges. Wilf Nelson from the School of Psychology was the runner up, and Justyna Czarnocka from the Institute of Pharmacy was voted as the winner of the Public’s Choice award.

Ella will now go on to represent the University of Birmingham in the 2018 national semi-finals. 


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