On 16 January 2019, Acting Vice-Chancellor Professor Bernie Morley hosted the annual Vice-Chancellor’s Research day. The session, held on campus in the Council Chamber was Chaired by Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) Jonathan Knight and was attended by Vice-Chancellor Designate Professor Ian White.

Early career researchers from across the University had the opportunity to showcase their work with a 10 minute presentation followed by 5 minutes of questioning.

PVC (R) Professor Jonathan Knight said “It was an excellent afternoon and surely one of the most dynamic we have ever had. There was a good attendance, with colleagues from across the University joining us, and enthusiastic speakers discussing their areas of research.”

Acting Vice-Chancellor Professor Bernie Morley said “It was a great opportunity to hear from our passionate researchers and hear more about our vibrant research environment. I really enjoyed the afternoon, learning more about many areas of research that will no doubt have an impact on our communities. It makes me very proud and I would like to thank all our researchers for everything they are doing here at the University.”

Combating Corruption in Africa: Bringing the Private Sector in from the Cold

Dr Tahiru Liedong is a Lecturer in Strategy and International Business at the School of Management. His research focuses on corporate political activity, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility and institutional entrepreneurship, particularly in emerging countries. Tahiru’s presentation shares insight from a recent study about the role business schools can play in combating systemic corruption in Africa. It highlights the importance of an inactive private sector and shows how business schools, acting as change agents, can nurture business leaders into corruption-fighting institutional entrepreneurs. Download the research presentation

“Why Are Gender Quota Laws Adopted by Men? The Role of Inter-and Intra-Party Competition”

Dr Ana Catalano Weeks is a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Comparative Politics, in the department of Politics, Languages, & International Studies at the University of Bath. Previously, she was a College Fellow in the Department of Government, Harvard University and a Research Fellow in the Women and Public Policy Program (WAPPP) at Harvard Kennedy School. She has a Ph.D. in Political Science from Harvard University. Ana's presentation highlights the strategic use of quota politics as tools of intra-party and inter-party competition. Quotas can be leveraged to compete with new far left parties, and to gain power over candidate selection within the party. Download the research presentation

Childhood obesity - a public health priority

Dr Tania Griffin is a lecturer in Nutrition and Population Health. Her research area is obesity prevention interventions in schools and other community settings, focusing on nutrition, physical activity and the promotion of healthy lifestyle behaviours. Childhood obesity is a public health priority with nearly a third of children in England overweight or obese. Tania discussed how the development of healthy lifestyle behaviours from a young age is important but an acknowledged challenge and as the complexity of obesity is recognised, interventions need to be multifactorial and adopt a systems approach. Download the research presentation

My Text in Your Handwriting

Dr Tom Fincham Haines completed his PhD at the University of York. He undertook a postdoc at Queen Mary followed by two at UCL before moving to the University. He is a Lecturer in the Department of Computer Science. Following a quick overview of Tom’s research he discussed how to replicate the handwriting of a specific author using machine learning. He spoke about different cases and demonstrated examples. Download the research presentation

Measuring conformational change in drug-target interactions

Dr Charlotte Dodson is an interdisciplinary scientist who established her independent research group at Imperial College in 2013. Her work encompasses biophysics, drug discovery, enzyme kinetics, structural biology, single molecule and other spectroscopies. She moved to Bath in April 2018 where she is a Lecturer in the Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology. Protein kinases are major drug targets known to adopt multiple conformations. Conformational change governs kinase activity and drug binding, yet capturing this has proved elusive. Charlotte discussed creating a single molecule assay which monitors kinase conformation in solution and how this is modified by binding partners for the first time. Download the research presentation

Examining Organisational Responsibilities in a Digital Age

Dr Sarah Glozer is a Senior Lecturer in Marketing and Society in the School of Management and Deputy Director of the Centre for Business, Organisations and Society (CBOS). Sarah’s research interests include Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), communication and digital marketing. Organisational responsibilities are much more fluid in today’s digital age. At a time when a critical spotlight is being placed on tech companies, and digital technologies therein, Sarah’s research examines the social and ethical implications of business and marketing practice in a digital world. Download the research presentation

Human interactions with structures and environment

Dr Erfan Shahabpoor Ardakani’s background is in modelling human dynamics/movement. His PhD research in Sheffield University was on human-structure interaction and his post-doctoral research was on developing wearable technologies for gait monitoring. He joined the Department of Architecture and Civil Engineering in 2017 as a Lecturer. Humans are intelligent and responsive entities, reacting and interacting continuously with their surrounding environments and stimuli. His presentation covered two key aspects of his research on such interactions: firstly, how humans react to/interact with structural vibrations, and secondly modelling human-environment interaction, with application in developing wearable assistive technologies for older people. Download the research presentation

Sex, Parasites, and Co-evolution

Dr Ben Ashby is a mathematical biologist. He obtained his PhD at Oxford before carrying out post-docs at Exeter and UC Berkeley. He moved to Bath last autumn after spending the first two years of his NERC fellowship at UC Berkeley. He is a Research Fellow in the Department of Mathematical Sciences. How do parasites affect host evolution, and vice versa? This is the key question that drives Ben’s research. He discussed how host-parasite models can help us to answer two fundamental questions in evolutionary biology: firstly why does sex exist, and secondly why do many species have elaborate ornaments? Download the research presentation

Evaluating monetary policy operational frameworks

Dr Asgerdur Petursdottir joined the University as a lecturer in the Department of Economics in 2015 after completing a PhD in economics at UNSW Australia. Previously she held positions at the central banks of Iceland and Sweden. Her research focuses on topics in monetary economics. Following the last financial crisis, central banks used unconventional measures to stimulate the economy as their policy rate had hit the zero-bound. Moving on from the crisis, Asgerdur analyses whether these unconventional measures should become part of the standard monetary policy operational framework or if the pre-crisis framework should be resumed. Download the research presentation

Precision control of multibody systems utilising novel flexure coupling elements

Dr Nicola Bailey completed her undergraduate masters degree in Mathematics at the University of Nottingham in 2011, before continuing for her PhD and an EPSRC Doctoral Prize year. At the end of 2015 she joined the department of Mechanical Engineering at the University as a research associate before being appointed as a lecturer in 2017. Systems used in robotics and automated machinery usually have joints with bearing parts that roll, slide and collide against each other; the associated interaction forces fundamentally limit the small-scale motion. Replacing bearing joints with flexure couplings, acting as pseudo-joints, eliminates the interaction forces and offers the potential for increased motion precision under control. Download the research presentation

Probing biology bottlenecks with electronics

Dr Paulo R.F. Rocha is a Lecturer in the Department of Electronic & Electrical Engineering. He has a PhD in Electronics and expertise in Bioelectronics. He is passionate about developing and characterising advanced sensors for healthcare and energy applications. Paulo’s presentation discussed two distinct yet complementary visions for his career in Bioelectronics at University, the development of advanced sensors for first energy and secondly healthcare technologies. Download the research presentation