Research_SPOTLIGHT Newsletter #3 SUMMER_RH/EW

SPOTLIGHT Research Newsletter
Professor Caroline Meyer
Student Test <>

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Welcome to the University of Warwick’s Research Newsletter, Spotlight.

Spotlight showcases the brilliance of our PhD students, researchers, technicians and academics - the foundation of our research community.

Please share widely among your teams and encourage others to sign up to Spotlight

This term, I’d like to highlight the strides our research community has made in terms of recognition and impact, not just locally but worldwide.

In this edition, read how research from the School of Modern Languages led to the creation of an Edinburgh Festival Fringe theatre performance, and about students from the School of Engineering visiting Belgium as part of a project which will send worms into space. Plus, congratulations to WBS for a fantastic funding win towards their AI project.

You can also learn about our new research strategy, and find out how you can contribute to the next edition.

Best wishes,

Caroline signature
Professor Caroline Meyer, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research)

Faculty of Social Sciences

Warwick researchers helping the UK's post-pandemic recovery

Over the past two years, the Warwick Institute for Employment Research has been playing an integral role in the Government advisory group, ReWAGE. 
In the wake of the pandemic, the UK government needed to rebuild the economy. In order to support this goal, the advisory group ReWAGE (Renewing Work Advisory Group of Experts) was formed. 

Co-chaired by Professor Chris Warhust (Warwick Institute for Employment Research), along with Professor Irena Grugulis from the University of Leeds, ReWAGE brought together academic experts from across the country, to help the UK’s post-pandemic recover. 

Professor Chris Warhurst

 ReWAGE secured over £600k funding, and made significant contributions to UK policy, producing 40 evidence papers, contributing to 8 parliamentary consultations and making regular based presentations to government. 

New WBS project will help develop trustworthy AI

Nick Chater from WBS

Warwick Business School has been awarded €8 million to develop the next generation of human-centric AI systems. Funded by Horizon Europe, the project involves collaboration with 21 partner organisations across Europe.
Nick Chater, Professor of Behavioural Science, will be leading the School's involvement in the project.   
As Nick explains: "The Warwick contribution to this project is to build on our research programme which understands co-ordinated behaviour, whether between people, or between people and AI, as depending on a process of implicit bargaining i.e., imagining what we would agree to do if we had the time to negotiate and discuss.   
"But, in real world interactions there's often no time for discussion so to collaborate effectively, human and AI systems must closely mesh their actions together in real time."  
The project will help pave the way for the next generation of human-centric AI systems. Find out more and watch a video about the research.


Science, Engineering & Medicine

Sending worms into space  

Wusat team going to Belgium

Over in the School of Engineering is a team that not many people may be aware of. WUSAT, the University of Warwick Satellite Engineering Team, was founded in 2006 by Dr Bill Crofts and is undertaking research into creating nanosatellites to launch in space.    
This February, six student members of WUSAT travelled to Belgium to the European Space Agency’s (ESA) learning facility, where they showcased their latest research project - developing a satellite that will be used to house microscopic worms in space.    
The group is working on a Low Earth Orbit satellite, or Cubesat, which will enable scientists to monitor activity of these microscopic worms in controlled conditions. They will also investigate the worms' ability to reproduce and continue to provide biomass during a remote space mission.  
This exciting research is of interest to both the ESA and NASA.


Siddartha in parliament

In the spotlight in Parliament

Professor Siddartha Khastgir (WMG) was recently in the spotlight in Parliament. He was invited by the House of Commons Transport Select Committee to provide evidence on the safety requirements of self driving vehicles. Find out more on LinkedIn.

Faculty of Arts

Championing sustainable development at Warwick 

The team at IGSD

In this edition, we’re shining a light on the Institute for Global Sustainable Development (IGSD), what it does, what it means to the University and the impact it is making on the wider world.

Caroline caught up with Professor Elena Korosteleva, the IGSD’s Director, to find out more.  

Theatre performance portraying human rights abuse stories produced from cultural research 

The Rewind performance

Warwick research is taking centre stage this summer, with a thought-provoking performance by Ephemeral Ensemble due to be staged at Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

REWIND has been developed largely as a result of research carried out by Professor Alison Ribeiro de Menezes (School of Modern Languages and Cultures). Her work examines legacies of state violence and dictatorship, records historical injustices and analyses the role of art in contexts of historical trauma. 

REWIND incorporates themes of forensic anthropology, the science used to help solve criminal cases. The performance is inspired by testimonies from refugees whose lives were affected by dictatorship in 1970s Latin America. It also draws on the experiences of young adult migrants affected by human rights abuse in the same region in 2019-2021.

Alison's research is supported by an AHRC Fellowship and two internal Warwick funds: Arts & Humanities Impact Fund and the Participatory Research Fund.

British Academy / Wolfson Fellowship success in the Department of History

The Jantar Mantar astronomical observatory, built in 1737 in Varanasi, India

A big congratulations to Dr James Poskett from the Department of History, who has been awarded a prestigious British Academy / Wolfson Fellowship
These Fellowships support early career researchers in the arts, social sciences, and humanities who "show outstanding talent in both research and public engagement and will communicate their research to a global audience".  
As part of the Fellowship, he'll be working on a project titled 'The Scientific Revolution as Global History, 1200–1800'. Stretching from Ming China to Mexica America, this project will reframe the history of early modern science as part of a global history, providing a major reassessment of the concept of the 'scientific revolution'.  The project builds on his recent book, Horizons: A Global History of Science
James comments: “I’m absolutely delighted to have been awarded a British Academy / Wolfson Fellowship. The Fellowship will allow me to continue to develop the global history of science as an academic field, whilst also dedicating time to communicating this research to public audiences.” 

Unsung Heroes
Dr Emily Crawley is our summer Unsung Hero

In the Department of Mathematics, the Zeeman Institute has been working on the research project for Gambienese Human African Trypanosomiasis Modelling and Economic Predictions for Policy (HAT MEPP), funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

It was difficult to manage a large international research team, making sure they engaged at the right time and in an effective manner with a range of key stakeholders.

So, this edition’s Unsung Hero accolade goes to a colleague who helped overcome that struggle, Dr Emily Crowley. Emily joined the HAT MEPP team as the scientific project manager in 2020, to support the running of the project. 

Always diligent in her work, Emily keeps the team on track with planning and has dramatically improved the internal processes. She has provided vital support in preparing for high-profile meetings with stakeholders including ministries of health from five different countries in Africa, and even Bill Gates! Emily also goes the extra mile to broaden her own skills, learning more about website development and taking French lessons in her own time to improve communication with Francophone partners.

HAT MEPP research will continue to 2024, and I’d like to wish the team the best of luck in their endeavours.

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We want to hear from you

Spotlight endeavours to recognise and celebrate research success across The University of Warwick and beyond. Our newsletter relies on contributions from every corner of the research community. 

If you have any feedback, or if you'd like to put forward an article for our next edition, please get in touch with the team at