Public Engagement

At the CDT, students are encouraged to take part in public engagement projects as this allows mutual learning between the public and the academic community. It enables students to use their scientific knowledge and skills to inspire and educate new audiences and strengthens their research by providing direct insights from communities with lived experience.

    Great Exhibition Road Festival 2019 CDT students host a series of Coding for Girls workshops for local Girlguiding groups
    CDT students explains the use of Virtual Reality in healthcare Coding for Girls workshops for local Girlguiding groups
    Children with heart conditions visit the Science Gallery London to hear about our cardiac surgery-related research CDT staff and students explain the use of radioactivity to diagnose and treat cancer at the Royal Society Summer Exhibition 2018
    Children with heart conditions visit the Science Gallery London to hear about our cardiac surgery-related research CDT staff and students explain the use of radioactivity to diagnose and treat cancer at the Royal Society Summer Exhibition
    Public Engagement initiatives that CDT students have taken part in include:
    • – Collaborating with post-graduate students from the Royal College of Art to create digital exhibits to open up the conversation around medical imaging research.
    • ECHO Happiness Hub – Co-presenting alongside creative facilitators in online workshops to engage children with heart conditions and their families with our research.
    • Coding for Girls – Inspiring the next generation of female coders through interactive workshops.
    • Sci-Fi Theatre – Collaborating with theatre makers to create a sci-fi play exploring the true potential of artificial intelligence within an imaginary setting.
    • Great Exhibition Road Festival – Sharing scientific knowledge and passion with thousands of visitors at a large science festival.
    • STEM for Britain – Showcasing research to UK MPs through a poster competition at the Houses of Parliament.
    • Pint of Science – Taking science to the local pub to give the public an insight into the latest research developments across the field.
    • I’m a Scientist, Get Me Out of Here! – Participating in a reality-TV style competition, where school students are the judges.

    Public Engagement Ambassadors

    Formed in early 2019, the Public Engagement Ambassadors (PEAs) are a group of CDT students and alumni with an enthusiasm for public engagement. The PEAs endeavor to further embed public engagement into the CDT’s research culture and practice. Their responsibilities include planning and delivering engagement projects, encouraging the involvement of fellow students, and providing advice and insights to the CDT’s public engagement officer. If you are a CDT student who would like to become a PEA or a member of the public interested in their work, please contact Jonny Jackson.

    Meet our ambassadors

    Aishwarya Mishra, CDT studentAishwarya Mishra

    My PhD is aimed at the delivery and tracking of nanomedicines in the body using new radiotracers, imaging and focused ultrasound. Being involved in public engagement has given me a better understanding of my research field. I enjoy interacting with the public, especially kids and explaining basic concepts of radioactivity, cancer and chemistry. I am a keen advocate of use of STEM engagement to counter myths and false information in present times. Outside work, I enjoy watching a fair bit of cinema and theatre. Also, I am a big fan of museums and exhibitions. 

    Elsa-Marie Otoo, CDT studentElsa-Marie Otoo

    My PhD research focuses on the visualisation 3d imaging and its use in education, diagnosis and surgery in medicine. I like teaching in general, so really enjoy interacting with the public, explaining interesting topics such as my work and being a BAME representative to inspire others. In my free time I like writing poetry, reading manga and manhuas.

    Jyoti MangalJyoti Mangal, CDT student

    Having studied classroom physics most of my university life, I’m currently gaining hands-on knowledge and experience in medical imaging for my PhD. My research work focuses on developing new ways to image the human brain at high resolution using MRI. My main interest in public engagement lies in helping the public, patients and knowledge seekers understand the nitty-gritties that goes behind neuroimaging. Far (way far) outside my field, I like being in the mountains for the fun hikes, pretty stars and non-sulfurous air.

    Lindsay MunroeLindsay Munroe, CDT student

    For my PhD research, I’m applying deep learning methods to predict brain iron concentration from medical images, which will be a useful tool to study neurodegeneration. I believe making science engaging and accessible for everyone is essential for science – as well as being fun and rewarding. In my spare time, I love climbing, learning piano, and taking my dog (a picnic-thief ninja) for walks.

    Virginia FernandezVirginia Fernandez, CDT student

    My PhD is about generating an atlas of the diseased human brain using Deep Learning. For years, I have been obsessed with drawing cartoons about science; at first to explain scientific concepts to myself, until I discovered the value of making them for and with the public. Public engagement is like bringing a pair of lungs to my research: it shows what we are working on and brings fresh air into our projects. In my “free” time, I do a bunch of different things, from hiking in nature to participating in podcasts about cinema, and my favourite, of course, drawing.

    Madeleine IafrateMadeleine Iafrate, Alumna (Student 2016-2021) 

    The goal of my PhD research was to be able to track the location of human cells within a person’s body using a combination of genetic engineering, radiopharmaceutical development, and medical physics. I love talking to as many people as I can about science and the environment, and I have been known to speak at public engagement events, coordinate them (e.g. Pint of Science 2019), and even host a podcast about all things PhD. Outside of my research, I am actively trying to find ways of reducing the environmental impact of scientific research waste and I won a Churchill Fellowship to continue my work in this area.

    Peter GawnePeter Gawne, Alumnus (Student 2015-2019)

    During my PhD, I designed new methods to potentially validate new drugs with medical imaging scanners using radioactivity. Throughout my project, I have taken part in various public engagement activities including organising and designing science festival stands, writing lay articles and the hosting of public events. I believe public engagement is an essential part of science, which benefits both the public and researchers. When I’m not in the lab, you will probably find me reading books, putting off doing exercise and watching too much TV.

    Samuel VenninSam Vennin, Alumnus (Aligned student 2014-2018)

    My PhD focused on investigating the relationship between blood flow and pressure to derive new clinical technologies and gain insights on the physiological mechanisms causing hypertension. My biggest achievement is… not having fainted once in my whole PhD even though I can’t stand blood!  I have participated in various types of engagement activities during my time at King’s, from planning science festival stands to writing lay summary articles and organising workshops in schools. Beyond my research, you can find me outside running everywhere or inside reading anything.