Students Staff

26 March 2015

Graham takes key role at research council

Filed under: Latest news, People pages — Tags: — Communications Office @ 4:54 pm
Professor Graham Underwood

Professor Graham Underwood

Professor Graham Underwood has taken on an important new role with the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).

He is the new chair of its Strategic Programme Advisory Group (SPAG), which recommends strategic research opportunities to NERC’s Science and Innovation Strategy Board (SISB).

Professor Underwood, who is Executive Dean of the Faculty of Science and Health, has extensive experience working with NERC since 2002 and he works with the Environment Agency on numerous policy-related research projects.

Professor Underwood said: “I am delighted to accept the position of chair of the Strategic Programme Advisory Group, which has a key role to play in NERC’s prioritisation of research investments. It is both a challenge and a privilege to take on this important task and I look forward to building on the foundations that my predecessor Mike Ellis so ably laid.”

NERC Chief Executive Professor Duncan Wingham said: “I am delighted that Professor Graham Underwood has agreed to be the new chair of SPAG. He will bring a vast amount of knowledge and experience to the role, and I look forward to working with him over the coming years.”

 

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

22 August 2014

Artificial blood project shortlisted

Filed under: Latest news, Research impact — Tags: , — Communications Office @ 3:13 pm
The team behind the Haem02 project

The team behind the Haem02 project

An innovative Essex-based project to develop a one-size-fits-all, third generation artificial blood substitute has been shortlisted for a national award.

Led by Professor Chris Cooper, from the School of Biological Sciences, the Haem02 team are developing an artificial blood substitute that is a safe, long-lasting, virus-free alternative to current blood transfusions.

The project has been shortlisted in the “Best New Medtech Development Programme” category of the OBN Annual Awards, which honours the best of UK bioscience, diagnostics and medtech companies.

Haemoglobin is the key protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen around our bodies. The Haem02 team aim to create an artificial haemoglobin-based oxygen carrier that could be used as a substitute for blood lost in surgery or trauma. Their engineered haemoglobin product has already been granted patents in the US and Australia and has a patent pending in the EU.

 

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

30 May 2014

Key new role for Graham

Filed under: Latest news, People pages — Tags: , , — Communications Office @ 4:14 pm
Professor Graham Underwood

Professor Graham Underwood

Professor Graham Underwood has taken up a key new role at the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).

As part of NERC’s new Strategic Programme Advisory Group, Professor Underwood will be involved in prioritising strategic research opportunities at NERC – the leading funder of independent research, training and innovation in environmental science in the UK.

Like his fellow members on the new advisory group, Professor Underwood was appointed due to his expertise in environmental science and is, therefore, well-placed to recognise emerging ideas and opportunities and make judgements across a range of scientific and policy issues.

Professor Underwood, who will continue as Executive Dean of the Faculty of Science and Health at Essex, said: “This is an exciting opportunity as it means we will be able to have the flexibility to identify the key strategic research areas, be able to respond to emerging events, and deliver funding more swiftly than ever before.”

NERC is currently funding a number of strategic projects involving scientists at the University’s School of Biological Sciences, including projects relating to biodiversity and ecosystems, rivers, and nutrient cycling in coastal seas

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

23 May 2014

Sharing the wonder of plants

Filed under: Latest news — Tags: — Communications Office @ 2:24 pm
PhD student John Ferguson from the School of Biological Sciences analyses a plant with a member of staff from St Mary's School for Girls in Colchester

PhD student John Ferguson from the School of Biological Sciences monitors a plant with a member of staff from St Mary’s School for Girls in Colchester

The wonder of plants was the theme behind a special event involving students and staff from the School of Biological Sciences at Beth Chatto Gardens.

As part of the International Fascination of Plants Day, the University was involved in a number of activities including gathering scientific data from the gravel and drought garden, which was set-up by Beth Chatto in 1992 to find our which garden plants would survive under drought conditions.

With the help of visitors, University biologists monitored plants with different characteristics using a thermal gun to measure leaf temperature and a porometer to measure how much water was lost.

Other hands-on activities organised by the University included a tree name trail and a range of different microscopes to look at various plant samples.

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

11 April 2014

How Mount Everest was really conquered

Filed under: Latest news, What's on — Tags: , — Communications Office @ 4:11 pm

EverestThe amazing story of Griffith Pugh, the scientific brains behind the first successful ascent of Everest in 1953 will be recalled by his daughter Harriet Tuckey at a special seminar at our Colchester Campus on Thursday 24 April.

She will also be signing copies of her book Everest – The First Ascent, which draws upon previously unseen diaries, rare archive material and interviews, to tell the story of how her father was the unsung hero who designed much of the key kit and also devised the dietary/oxygen systems for the expedition (which he went on himself).

A doctor and physiologist, Pugh revolutionised almost every aspect of British high-altitude mountaineering, transforming the climbers’ attitude to oxygen, the clothes they wore, their equipment, fluid intake and acclimatisation. Yet, far from receiving the acclaim he was due, he was met with suspicion and ridicule.

However, later in his career his impact in helping athletes enhance their performance lasts to this day in the fields of cycling, swimming and running.

Harriet Tuckey, who is also an Essex alumna, will give the talk on Thursday 24 April at 1pm in 1N1.4.1.

  • Places for the talk are limited. If you would like to attend please email Lynsey Dawson at: ldawson@essex.ac.uk

 

 

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

11 February 2014

Time to enjoy the great outdoors

Filed under: Latest news, People pages, Research impact, Sport — Tags: , — Communications Office @ 2:05 pm
Dr Valerie Gladwell

Dr Valerie Gladwell

This is the third of a short series of blogs from our sports scientists and experts giving tips and guidance on fitness and nutrition as you prepare for the Colchester Half Marathon.

Dr Valerie  Gladwell, Senior Lecturer in Sports and Exercise Science, says: 

The sun has finally come out and I write this after a lovely run outside. I had to run on the roads as the fields where I normally run are too soggy to do any speed work and today was a speed session.

There are less than 5 weeks to go now until the half marathon and still it seems so dark for so long.  Getting outdoors to run or walk in the daytime is particularly important at this time a year. It can give you a real boost, especially if you are surrounded by nature. Research from here at Essex, shows that it can boost your mood and self-esteem with just 5 minutes.

Our research also consistently demonstrates that there is a lower rate of perceived exertion if you undertake your exercise within nature. What this means is that you either find the same exercise easier or that the time taken to complete the run is reduced at the same effort.

So, if you can, try and get out during the daylight hours for some of your training sessions. Even it is for a short period of time, you really don’t need long to get the benefits.

Obviously this is easier at the weekend. However, if you do get the chance to break up your working day and take control of your lunch break you might also feel really empowering. Most of my sessions are no longer than 25 minutes which includes a brief warm-up, three five-minute efforts, few strides and, if I have time, some drills which include high knees, heel flicks and jumps.

If you like running with others you can always train with the group that goes out on Wednesday lunch times from the Sports Centre at our Colchester Campus, or why not team up with someone else who is completing the same challenge as you? Saturdays also offers you the chance to take part in a park run. These are turn-up-and-run 5k sessions in local parks where you run with other like-minded people. There are events in Colchester, Chelmsford and Ipswich. The great thing about these is that you can track your progress.

Go run outdoors, not only will it make the training easier but you will improve your mood too.

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

24 January 2014

Raising awareness of air pollution hazards

Filed under: Latest news, People pages, Research impact — Tags: , — Communications Office @ 5:08 pm

 

Professor Ian Colbeck

Professor Ian Colbeck receiving a certificate in recognition of his success with transnational education from University of the Punjab Vice-Chancellor Mujahid Kamran with Richard Weyers from the British Council

Raising awareness of air pollution and environmental health hazards was the main theme behind a special event in Pakistan involving Essex academics this month.

With Pakistan having some of the highest levels of air pollution hotspots in the world, there is a growing awareness in the country of the need to tackle this issue due to the serious implications to health.

Leading air pollution expert Professor Ian Colbeck, from our School of Biological Sciences, has been working with the University of the Punjab since 2006 to raise awareness of air quality issues and helping them improve their environmental courses.

In 2012 Essex and Punjab were awarded British Council funding to help establish an environmental masters course in Pakistan. Since then staff and students from the University of the Punjab have visited Essex.

During the recent visit to the University of the Punjab, Professor Colbeck took part in workshops to discuss future collaborations and to the latest advances in aerosol science and technology.

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

20 January 2014

Research round-up

Filed under: Latest news, Research impact — Tags: , , , , — Communications Office @ 3:10 pm
Dr Greg Brooke

Dr Greg Brooke

Research into creating a “designer” protein that could be effective at treating prostate cancer was just one of many top research stories to come out of Essex in the past week.

Working with colleagues at  Imperial College London, Dr Greg Brooke, from the School of Biological Sciences, is hoping to develop the protein into a treatment that could be trialled in patients within five years.

Other studies which received national coverage included research into what influences growth and decline in church attendances by the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER).

Quantitative sociologist Professor David Voas, based at ISER, carried out research into church attendances as part of the Church Growth Research Programme funded by the Church of England and his report was welcomed by the Archbishop of Canterbury.

New research from the Department of Government, shows that the changing fortunes of the British economy are having little impact on the popularity of the Coalition government.

Whereas evidence shows that when Labour was in office, support for the party was strongly influenced by the state of the economy – as was support for the Conservatives – all that has changed, with the current Coalition feeling none of the effects of a fairly rapid growth in economic optimism which has taken place since early 2013.

 

 

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

3 January 2014

Chris takes new role at HPU

Filed under: Latest news, People pages — Tags: , , — Communications Office @ 9:16 am
Chris McManus

Chris McManus

Sport scientist Chris McManus has become the new Manager of the University’s Human Performance Unit at our Colchester Campus.

Chris has taken on a number of roles since graduating from Essex in 2006, including completing a Masters in Sports Management, working as a fitness consultant in Canada and a sport scientist and consultant for Lucozade Sport, providing sport science and nutrition support to a variety of elite athletes and teams.

Since September 2011 Chris has worked part-time at the HPU as a sport scientist, alongside his PhD investigating the influence of caffeine on physiological performance.

Chris is looking forward to a number of projects being undertaken at the HPU for 2014, particularly the development of its outreach activities.

“By bringing college students into the HPU we hope to enthuse them about studying sport science and pursuing a career in such a dynamic and vibrant environment,” explained Chris.

His predecessor, Dr Dave Parry, is now the HPU Director and a lecturer in the School of Biological Sciences, where he will be teaching sports psychology and training and coaching science.

Dave is also conducting research in to how athletic pacing is controlled and exhibited, and the role of perception in influencing fatigue during exercise. As part of the University’s new sport strategy, Dave has also taken on the role of Performance Sport Director, with the primary aim of developing high performance focus sports and attracting sports scholarship students to Essex.

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.

12 November 2013

Outstanding students celebrated at Dean’s List reception

Executive Dean Professor Graham Underwood with students

Executive Dean Professor Graham Underwood with students at the Dean’s List reception

Our talented students were invited to the first Dean’s List reception organised by the Faculty of Science and Health this week.

Many were even served drinks by their heads of department at the informal celebration which is part of our strategy to celebrate excellence at the University. Similar events are also being organised by other faculties to highlight the achievement s of their Dean’s List students.

The Dean’s List recognises current students who achieved high marks including Firsts and Distinctions in the previous academic year.

Executive Dean for the Faculty of Science and Health Professor Graham Underwood said: “It is great that we were able to celebrate the hard work and achievements of these excellent students.

“The evening was very enjoyable, with a combination of short talks, conversation and refreshments.  I enjoyed personally speaking to as many students as possible, and hearing their positive views of their courses and University life.”

During the evening staff gave presentations about their research work with Dr Edd Codling talking about the mathematics of cows, Professor Debi Roberson discussing her travels with a lightbox and Dr Matt Jones explaining what causes jetlag.

Staff supporting the event included Professor Christine Raines, Professor Maria Fasli, Professor Jo Jackson, Professor Sheina Orbell and Deputy Dean (Education) Dr David Penman.

The University of Essex will moderate comments and there will be a delay before any posts appear.