Vice-Chancellor’s University of Adelaide visit strengthens global partnership

May 2nd, 2023

The inaugural symposium of the Adelaide-Nottingham Alliance is taking place this week, with Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Shearer West leading a delegation to South Australia to further develop the strategic global partnership between the University of Nottingham and the University of Adelaide.

The Adelaide-Nottingham Alliance  has emerged from many years of friendship and collaboration in research and education between our universities.

The symposium, taking place at the University of Adelaide’s North Terrace Campus on Thursday 4 May, will explore how the capabilities of each university and areas of our shared expertise can address the challenges shared by Australia and the UK and our partners across the world.

Professor West and Associate Director for Global Engagement David Ouchterlonie will meet their counterparts and hear from academics from both institutions. Adelaide and Nottingham each have world-leading strengths in food, health and sustainability research, areas which provide strategic focus as we deepen and broaden collaboration between our universities.

Nottingham’s Ian Fisk, Professor of Flavour Chemistry and Theme Lead for Global Food Systems, and his Adelaide counterpart will discuss how multi-disciplinary research in agriculture, plant science, crop science, environmental science, food science, advanced technologies, data science, humanities and social science will contribute to the grand challenge of providing healthy food in a constantly changing environment.

Dr Sally Eldeghaidy, Assistant Professor in Nutritional Neuroimaging, and Nottingham’s Theme Lead for Intelligent Health, will discuss how innovative technologies and intelligent, data-driven social strategies will shape the future of health, with a multi-disciplinary, intelligence-informed approach making health systems more agile.

Dr Eleanor Binner, Associate Professor of Chemical and Environmental Engineering and Nottingham’s Theme Lead for Sustainable Futures, will explore the delivery of sustainable solutions to help societies in Australia, the UK and beyond to adapt and flourish in the face of complex environmental, social and economic challenges.

The Adelaide-Nottingham Alliance also focuses on training the research leaders of tomorrow.

The University of Nottingham’s delegation includes Joint PhD students Robert Rintoul, Laura Beckett and Alexandra Thomas. There will be PhD networking opportunities and 3-minute thesis presentations by students about their research.

Since 2015, we have delivered an International Doctoral Training Partnership (Joint PhD award programme), enabling PhD students to undertake a research degree at both universities at the same time.

The researchers spend at least a year in each location, benefitting from the expertise of world-leading supervisors and access to specialist research facilities at both Nottingham and Adelaide.

This flagship programme initially bridged Nottingham’s School of Biosciences and Adelaide’s School of Agriculture, Food and Wine. Today it spans all disciplines with students enrolled in areas including Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Medicine, Sociology, Education and Mathematics.

The symposium will announce projects that have been successfully applied to the Adelaide-Nottingham Alliance Research Seed Fund, set up to encourage research collaborations between the two institutions.

Professor West and the Nottingham delegation will visit research facilities such as the Extraterrestrial Environmental Simulation (EXTERRES) laboratory and hear from researchers who are exploring the future of renewable foods, with applications such as astronaut nutrition.

The visit will see Professor West and Professor Peter Høj, Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Adelaide, renew the memorandum of understanding between the two universities. Professor Høj is set to visit Nottingham in November 2023 to further progress this global partnership.

Professor West said: “Professor Høj and I are delighted to join together with research leaders and talented early career researchers from our institutions. We will hear about their exciting discoveries and help our people spark innovative new partnerships, while our Global Engagement teams will work to advance support for our researchers and identify further opportunities for international collaboration.

“I also look forward to visiting the University of Adelaide’s world-class research facilities, and welcoming our Adelaide friends and colleagues to Nottingham’s own sector-leading facilities later this year.”

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