Staff Blogs: University of Leicester

Welcome to the University of Leicester academic and staff blog site.

From Royal Society Fellows to early-career researchers, corporate services to academic related – all members of staff are engaged in creating new knowledge, whether in the sciences, social sciences, business, the arts or wherever their interests lie. This wealth of research expertise means Leicester has a unique and critical role to play in helping to overcome major challenges faced by society.

This site aims to provide a platform for University of Leicester staff – whether early-career, established or somewhere in between; whether researching and rehearsing ideas, networking with peers, or an early form of publication. As you would expect from Leicester, it’s inclusive and accessible so we look forward to your comments.

Latest posts from the staff blogs

Henrik Melin

Juno’s second perijove – may the science commence!

The Juno spacecraft is today 3 million km from Jupiter, and it has spent its time in the first of two capture orbits about the planet. These orbits take 53 days to complete and are followed by the main science phase with orbits about 14 days long. The capture orbit itself is designed to keep […]

Martin Coffey

Work Life Balance

So, I am aware that the summer is nearly over and soon it will be the start of another University year. Seems reasonable to reflect on work-life balance. There is a whole area of Occupational research on work-life balance. Some people have built a portion of their academic career on it. However, the question remains, […]

Andrew Dunn

International Religious Freedom Report 2015

Published annually by the US State Department it measures commitment to allow individuals to practice individual religious beliefs in countries worldwide. Long term trends can be traced via their website which has the full text of all reports from 2001 onwards. Each country section has a religious demography profile, information on legal protection of religious […]

Margaret Maclean

Desert ‘magick’ and astral bodies – what could they have to do with Special Collections?

Our current exhibition, exploring the experiences and attitudes of the British in India from the early 17th century to the turn of the 20th, features a selection of material from the Union Club Library, purchased by the University in 1964, about which I wrote previously.  But it also draws on the collection of Victor Neuburg.  […]

Emma Battell Lowman

Rest in Pieces: The story of a hanged woman and her journey to becoming a museum object. By Ali Wells

  When referring to “skeletons in the cupboard” we rarely expect these to be literally true, but in the case of Mary Ann Higgins and the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum in Coventry, it is.   In the early 1970s the Herbert acquired an unusual and unique object – the head of the penultimate woman […]

Rachel Tunstall

Crowdsourcing using an online noticeboard

Padlet is a free online noticeboard, which enables you to post thoughts and ideas on ‘sticky notes’. You can add text, images, video, links or documents to the board from any device, and it can be shared publically or with a closed group. There are several ways Padlet can be used in the classroom to aid […]

Christian De Vito

Ecuadorian thoughts on religion, power and the subaltern classes

The Iglesia de la Merced, in Quito, was built in 1737 on the remains of the original church that dated from 1538 – four years after the foundation of the city. The church is situated in the city centre, at less than one kilometre distance from all other main sites of the colonial period: the […]

Barbara Cooke

Evelyn Waugh at the Huntington

  We have had to expand the Waugh Corner lately, to make room for our esteemed new friends at the Huntington Library, California. Working with the Evelyn Waugh Society and the Rothschild Foundation, the Huntington has kindly agreed to host the two-day symposium Evelyn Waugh: Reader, Writer, Collector from 5-6 May 2017. The rationale for the symposium is […]

Helen Dexter

A legal war is no less lethal.

The question of the legality of the war in Iraq was, quite deliberately, beyond the scope of Chilcot Enquiry and the report published yesterday makes no direct comment about legality. Never the less, for many the question of the legality of the war is crucial. The initial response to the report is that it indirectly […]

Martin Parker

The Morning after Brexit

  Brendan Lambe. Lecturer in Finance and an Irish European, reflects on the meaning of the referendum.   On the morning of the 24th of June we awoke to a Britain which had changed utterly. A palpable sense of bewilderment remains with us still. In no quarter was the sting of this decision felt more […]

Alberto Fernández Carbajal

Tehmina Kazi reading and Muslim LGBT activism

As the final event of the Queering Islam events series for 2015-2016, Tehmina Kazi, the Director of British Muslims for Secular Democracy, visited us at the University of Leicester to do a reading of her story ‘The Tulip Asylum’, a story about homosexuality in contemporary Iran. Below you can find an excerpt of her reading and […]

Marie Muir

Waffle…not the good kind!

You are in an interview, you are nervous, there are three interviewers and they are all staring at you in suspense. One of them is asking you a question, but your too busy trying to conceal your nerves so you hear ‘Tell me about…experience….school…team?” You launch off in to an answer about your netball teams’ […]

Stephen Walker

Student Perceptions of ‘useful’ Digital Technology

“Now, what I want is, Facts….Facts alone are wanted in life” (Mr Gradgrind) A recent Australian study by Henderson, Selwyn and Aston (2015) found that students use digital technologies to support the logistical aspects of their learning : time-saving; finding out about and fulfilling course requirements; mobile and remote access; researching information; getting organised. Where students […]

Ana Verissimo

Staff away day

The latest staff away day took place at Stamford court, with university and departmental updates, a group activity over coffee to reflect on how the department could improve various aspects of the working environment via the working lives committee, bite-sized research presentations and lunch. In the afternoon, departmental staff got competitive at the sports hall. […]

Memorial Page

Mark Pluciennik died on 7 May at the age of 62, following a battle with a progressive neurological condition. Mark joined the School of Archaeology and Ancient History in 2003 and was the second Director of Distance Learning in Archaeology and Ancient History at Leicester, retiring in 2011. He subsequently held the title of University […]

Looting the Archives: Joe Orton

Dr. Samantha Mitschke has been working in the School of Arts as an AHRC Cultural Engagement Fellow since February. Working with the archives held in Special Collections at the University of Leicester, she has curated a public exhibition taking place in September 2016 as part of the fiftieth anniversary celebrations of the London premiere of […]


Different strokes for different folks: Two patient safety tales

A bit about me I’ve been a researcher and part-time PhD student at SAPPHIRE at the University of Leicester for nearly four years. My day-to-day work is concerned with exploring how NHS hospitals ensure and improve patient safety – particularly focusing on organisational culture– while my PhD research is concerned with exploring patient safety from […]

Paul Boyle

Why Open Access?

We are committed to undertaking research which inspires and delivers change for the better.  So, it is vitally important that our research findings are freely available to the world.   To achieve this, we need to embrace Open Access.  In this short video, I consider the benefits of Open Access and how it can help […]

Grant Denkinson

DMP Rubrics

I’m starting to work more with Data Management Plans (DMPs) which are required by some funders and might well be a good idea for most researchers anyway. We’re looking at DMPonline by the Digital Curation Centre for creating them and what local customisations we want to make. I’m also starting to look at DMP Rubrics and the […]

Hello world!

Welcome to Sites. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start blogging!

Philip Shaw

Daring Deeds of Valour

Daring Deeds of Valour By Dr Rachel Bates, University of Leicester The 29 January 2016 marks the 160th anniversary of the Victoria Cross, a key legacy of the Crimean War (1854-56). Over the past four years, I have been looking at how the Crimean War shaped British understanding of war, violence and nationhood. The creation […]

Marie Muir

New Year, New Career, New Outlook

January is rubbish. It’s cold, wet and dark and your holiday is over. You are back, revising hard for your exams and assignment deadlines are coming in thick and fast, so how do you motivate yourself to get back on the job/internship search. Ten members of the Career Development Service Team tell you how; “Plan […]

Why do a MOOC in Museum Studies?

Over 11,000 people signed up for the first run of our Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), Behind the Scenes at the 21st Century Museum, and they were overwhelmingly positive about their experience. Demand is so high that we are running the course again, starting on January 18th 2016.  But why might you want to undertake […]

Maria Rovisco

Dancing With Strangers: Body and Otherness in the Experience of Citizenship – by Rita Marcalo

This post is authored by Rita Marcalo, dancer, choreographer and Artistic Director of Instant Dissidence, as a response to the Workshop ‘Arts and Citizenship’ held at the Department of Media and Communication in June 2015. Since 2013 I have been developing a performance series entitled Dancing With Strangers. The first instance in the series took the European […]


Stata14 and the future of this blog

I have not posted for the last few weeks, not because I have nothing to say but rather because I have been thinking about the future of this blog. I have had in mind for some time that there is a need to say something about the Bayesian analysis facilities that were introduced in Stata14 and while preparing […]

Norman Housley

The Maid of Orleans and Crusading

The Maid of Orleans and Crusading:   reflections on a colloquium La France et l’Orient au temps de Jeanne d’Arc. Idéaux pacifiques et réalités guerrières, Rouen, 29 May 2015 Meeting in the splendid surroundings of the Salle des États in Rouen’s recently opened ‘Historial Jeanne d’Arc’, the speakers at this colloquium gave their attention to a […]

Anna Charalambidou

Our book ‘Authentic Recipes from Around the World’ is out

Our much-anticipated book, entitled ‘Authentic Recipes from Around the World’ (HAT Events, 2015), written by the investigators of the project (Emma-Jayne Abbots, Anna Charalambidou, Elaine Forde, Ana Martins, Hazel Thomas, Deborah Toner) and a number of collaborators and external partners has been published! This general audience book is the outcome of the AHRC project “Consuming […]

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