Prof. Doug Cleaver returns from India after a successful trip
Thursday 07 February 2019
In January, Professor Doug Cleaver of MERI’s Materials Modelling group visited India to both deliver a Plenary conference talk and, working with Hallam's New Delhi office, promote broader college and University activities.
The conference, on Condensed Matter and Biological Systems, was held in the ancient city of Varanasi and hosted within the extensive grounds of Banaras Hindu University. In addition to delivering his keynote talk, Doug was asked to speak more generally (and garland a statue of the University’s founder) as 'Chief Guest' at the conference inauguration.
As well as enjoying the science, he learned a lot about Indian research structures and the efforts and investment currently being made to expand these. After the conference, he spent two full days in and around New Delhi, visiting and giving Guest Lectures to College at two Engineering colleges plus a seminar to academics from two research-intensive institutions (JNU and the neighbouring IIT). He also updated the Delhi office staff on Sheffield Hallam's PhD offer and worked with them to produce some comment pieces for local and national media.
On returning to Sheffield (with no sign of any tummy bugs, please note) Doug reflected: 'It was difficult to justify such a long trip for just one Conference presentation, even a prestigious one. The college visits and press work I did in Delhi greatly increased the reach of my trip though – as a researcher, there are places I can go into to show off the SHU badge which would be closed off to a more recruitment-focused approach. I really enjoyed working with Sheffield Hallam’s small but very lively team in New Delhi and would certainly encourage others to leverage their conference trips in this way - the responses I received in India show that research has a very positive contribution to make to our international image and, thus, activities.'