How interdisciplinary research can engage young minds through outreach

  • Start Date: October 26, 2016 at 4:00 pm
  • End Date: October 26, 2016 at 5:30 pm
  • Location: B13, Physics Building, University Park
  • Ticket Price: 0.00

Black History Month Colloquium presented by the School of Physics and Astronomy.

With ever-increasing funding constraints from ‘traditional’ UK research councils, in addition to the resulting uncertainty in long-term EU funding due to the outcome of the UK Brexit vote, the need for demonstrating the impact of research that goes ‘beyond academia’ has never been greater.  Furthermore, in recent times, there have been strong utterances from Government to widen participation at elite institutions, especially in STEM subjects, to those groups that are traditionally underrepresented.  As such, novel ways of disseminating research that aim to address both aspects through varying outreach and public engagement initiatives have been developed.   This talk will examine the common threads between such initiatives (primarily developed at Imperial College), and the key role that the interdisciplinary nature of research can play in this regard.  Examples of recent programs and their corresponding impact will be examined.

Dr Mark Richards has a BSc in chemistry (Manchester) and PhD in physics (Imperial). His research centers on the spectroscopic study of trace chemicals for atmospheric remote sensing retrievals. He has since co-founded Duvas Technologies, an Imperial College spinout technology business – specialising in air quality monitoring and wireless air sensing networks.

Mark is currently a Senior Teaching Fellow within the Faculty of Natural Sciences, and Head of Physics Outreach at Imperial College London. In addition to UG and PG teaching, Mark has set-up numerous widening participation and outreach programs that aim to encourage more young people from underrepresented groups to pursue STEM as a viable study route and career choice. He has also contributed to STEM-related outreach initiatives in the EU, US, and Caribbean. Mark is also involved with several community-based educational charities and has served as a mentor to many young people over the years.

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