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

Andrew Dunn

Six Day War Declassified Files.

The Israel State Archives has released a number of key documents on the Six Day War also known as the 1967 Arab–Israeli War, or Third Arab–Israeli War, which was fought between June 5 and 10, 1967 by Israel and the neighboring states of Egypt (known at the time as the United Arab Republic), Jordan, and […]

Leigh Fletcher

Juno’s first observations of Jupiter are revealing a giant world that is defying our expectations

[This is an extended version of an article that first appeared on the Conversation]   Last month, planetary scientists from around the world met at the European Geophysical Union (EGU) conference in Vienna, and were treated to the first glimpse of long-awaited results from NASA’s Juno spacecraft. The atmosphere was one of surprise, excitement, and […]

The secret peacemaker: A quiet leader of our time

Professor Mark Stein of the School of Business mourns the key intermediary between the British government and the IRA with Leicester connections, who has died aged 80. Brendan Duddy   Brendan Duddy, the ‘secret peacemaker’ and intermediary between the British government and the IRA during the ‘troubles’ in Northern Ireland, has died aged 80 in […]

Unrequited Love: The Enduring Pain of Convictism in Western Australia

By Kellie Moss The sentence of transportation signified the physical removal, or banishment of convicts, from the wider social body to colonies overseas. In the case of transportation to Australia (1788-1868), convicts were not allowed to return to Britain, even after the expiration of their sentences. This permanent severance of their connections to friends, family […]

How can we support digital literacies? My take-home thoughts form attending the JISC Digital Capability Community Launch

Taken from :https://storify.com/Jisc/digital-capability-community-launch [10/05/2017]   Stephen Walker, Frances Deepwell, Neil Donahue, Sarah Whittaker, Nevin Moledina and I attended a JISC event to develop a group interested in developing institutional digital capabilities. We had some interesting discussions and ideas around why we should think about digital “stuff”, and how staff and students can be supported in […]

Julia Clark

Pregnancy in landscape – the rise of the banner bump

  With the growth of social media and online news outlets, there is increasing demand for ‘landscape’ representations of pregnancy. Online features tend to require a thematically appropriate banner shot – in many cases, the selected image will look like this: Photo bottom right by Teza Harinaivo Ramiandrisoa (CC BY-SA)   The classic ‘banner bump’ […]

jbridges

27th April 2017 Sol 1679

After 4.5 years, 16.2 km of driving and 1679 martian days (sols) the Curiosity Rover has reached the point here we are starting to leave the Bagnold dunes in Gale Crater. We have driven parallel to these basaltic dunes for the first part of the mission then cut through them at the Bagnold crossing. The next big […]

Marina Spunta

Luigi Ghirri and the Photography of Place

Our book on Luigi Ghirri has just been published:   M. Spunta and J. Benci (eds), Luigi Ghirri and the Photography of Place. Interdisciplinary Perspectives (Oxford: Peter Lang, 2017)   https://www.peterlang.com/view/product/79823?rskey=lwTAcx&result=1   Many thanks to all the contributors and to all those who supported our research project.   Please share this with interested colleagues.

Margaret Maclean

A tulip bulb, the value of which would have fed ‘a whole ship’s crew for a twelvemonth’

The tulip, with its bold, eye-catching flowers in a wide variety of gorgeous colours, is in bloom, in many of our spring gardens, making one of their most striking features. In common with many flowers, it has gone in and out of fashion over the centuries – but the tulip’s history has been more dramatic than […]

Hooray for the National Trust

There are many things in life that one should really rise above and not respond to. One such thing, in my humble opinion, is the Daily Mail. But this morning I took the unusual step of actually reading something in the Mail (don’t worry, I thoroughly washed my hands afterwards) – an article that was […]

Martin Coffey

Communication and Influence – An Essential Transferable Skill (or is it skills?).

“The meaning of communication is the response you get” – Anthony Robbins. Growing up in a rural community in Ireland, our farm would, very occasionally, be visited by sales people, selling a variety of products literally out of the back of a car. Items included household decorations, clothes and many more. As a small child […]

Grant Denkinson

Automated concept / keyword generation for journal articles in repositories

I was checking out a research paper in the ACM Digital Library: SibylFS: formal specification and oracle-based testing for POSIX and real-world file systems and spotted something interesting: a “Concepts in this article” drop-down “Powered by IBM Watson” For more on Watson, see IBM Watson: Beyond Jeopardy! Q&A I’ve been thinking what calls to action a user […]

The University Leadership Team

International Women’s Day – The Gender Pay Gap at the University of Leicester

Today March 8th 2017 marks International Women’s Day. International Women’s Day is a global day of celebration that marks the struggle for gender equality. It provides a forum for celebrating the role of women and their achievements, identifies challenges for the future and campaigns for change.   We know that one of the greatest challenges […]

Barbara Cooke

Professor David Bradshaw, 1955-2016

The Complete Works of Evelyn Waugh project is deeply sad to announce the untimely passing of our Co-Investigator, David Bradshaw. David had been ill with cancer for some months. Below are some personal memories of David from members of the CWEW team.               From Barbara Cooke:   I first […]

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’ […]

Emma Battell Lowman

Being Disturbingly Informative. By Shane McCorristine

  Last year I visited a fine old building nestled incongruously close to the skyscrapers and busy financial offices of Market Street in downtown Philadelphia. The building houses the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, the oldest private medical organisation in the United States (founded in 1787). Today, Philadelphia’s heyday as the centre of medical and […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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