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WRDTC Sixth Annual Conference 2017 – ‘Interdisciplinarity in a changing world: methods, challenges and opportunities’

July 18, 2017

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The sixth Annual Conference of the White Rose DTC took place on 29th June 2017 at University of Sheffield. The theme of the conference was ‘Interdisciplinarity in a changing world: methods, challenges and opportunities’.

The conference was attended by nearly 150 PhD students from the universities of Sheffield, Leeds and York. Attendees from Leeds and York travelled on coaches to reach the venue and join their Sheffield-based colleagues for the day.

It was a packed programme of talks onwhiterose17-1-3 the topic of ‘Interdisciplinarity in a changing world: methods, challenges and opportunities’, as well as an opportunity for delegates to meet the new White Rose Doctoral Training Partnership (WRDTP) Pathway Directors at one of the 7 Interdisciplinary Themed Pathway sessions.  The day opened with a welcome from Professor Matthew Festenstein, from the University of York.

The keynote speaker, Professor James Wilsdon, Professor of Research Policy, Department of Politics & Director of Impact and Engagement, University of Sheffield, inspired the audience with his talk and follow up Q&A session. James spoke about “Disciplinary dilemmas: promises & pitfalls of the UK’s race for a new model of research


Professor Gwilym Pryce


The morning talks also included a range of talks on research methodologies, including presentations from, Professor Gwilym Pryce – ‘AQUALM and Interdisciplinarity‘ (Sheffield Methods Institute, University of Sheffield), and Dr Nick Emmel – ‘Setting the wheels of interdisciplinary research in motion‘ (University of Leeds).

After lunch, delegates attended one of the Interdisciplinary Themed Research Panels in their fields.




‘Interdisciplinarity in a changing world: methods, challenges and opportunities’ Photo Gallery


The Presentations Are Available for Download below:

Posters Competition:

13 posters by PhD researchers from the three universities were exhibited at the conference, and were entered into a competition.

The Poster Exhibition entries were judged by conference attendees.  The first prize went to Mohammed Anindita and the runners up prize to Uyi Ezeanah. The submitted posters can be viewed here.

Muhammad AninditaUyi Ezeanah

Best Student Presentation Awards

Prizes were also awarded by Professor Ruth Blakeley, incoming WRDTP Director, for the best student presentation in each of the Interdisciplinary Themed Pathways.

The best student presentation winners were:

Wanwan Zhu – Sustainable Growth, Management, and Economic Productivity (SMP)

John Dotse – Wellbeing, Health, and Communities (WHC)

Stefan Vollmer – Data, Communication, and New Technologies (DCT)

Fatima Ajia – Cities, Environment, and Liveability (CEL)

Rowling Hu – Education, Childhood, and Youth (ECY)

Eric Hoddy – Security, Conflict, and Justice (SCJ) & Civil Society, Development, and Democracy (CDD)

Feedback on the successful presentations can be found here.