Archive | Life after a PhD RSS for this section

Nature Organisations to Join & Volunteer With

The Wildlife Trust: Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire & Northamptonshire.

Henry Stanier, Ecology Groups officer

The Manor House
Broad Street
Great Cambourne
Cambridge CB23 6DH

Wednesdays Conservation Management Volunteering

Scrub clearing with Andy Fleckney

The Wildlife Trust: Hertfordshire and Middlesex:

Carol Lodge (MIEEM)
Wildlife Sites Programme Manager

Herts & Middlesex Wildlife Trust

Grebe House, St Michael’s Street

St Albans, Hertfordshire


Thursdays: botanical surveying

Wildlife Recording:

  • Local Environmental Record Centres (LRC):

  • Bedfordshire and Luton:

  • John Dony Centre in Luton

Luton Hoo Walled Garden Project:


Conservation & Saving Our World

Aim of Category & Post:

To identify conservation areas that I’m interested in and practical applications areas of my PhD research (plant-herbivores interactions, plant chemistry, inorganic pollutants).

Conservation Areas:

Urban gardens

Nature reserves in polluted areas

Set aside areas, nearby areas of agricultural run-off

Nature Improvement Areas (NIAs) – areas of land where natural features and wildlife habitats exist alongside housing, roads and food production.

Practical application areas of PhD research:

  • Nature after minerals: Converting mineral extraction area to conservation areas.
  • Biofortification of food: Increasing the trace mineral content of crops through identifying plants traits or population traits that have naturally higher mineral uptake and mineral concentrations. Determining the ecological effects of this – food chain, biomagnification, effects on the soils, litter decomposition.
  • Phytoremediation of inorganic, organometallic and organic pollutants
  • Conservation of hyperaccumulating plants

Further Theoretical Areas of PhD research:

  • Elemental defence hypothesis: Joint Effects Theory, Accumulators and elemental defence, population differences.

Taken from ‘The Thesis Whisperer’: ‘The nowhere-everywhere place’ i.e. life just after submitting.

The Thesis Whisperer

This post is written by Maia Sauren, a PhD student at RMIT  who will be doing a series on life immediately post PhD

I submitted my thesis. About three weeks ago. I still don’t quite believe it.

Hate me yet? I would. Every time a friend submitted theirs, I wanted to kill them. Or die. On the up side, it’s really possible! Until it was almost over, I didn’t think so.

I’ve been enrolled for many years, and finishing took all my reserves. Working part-time just wasn’t working for me, so I took out a loan. I developed a mild social phobia – the idea of talking about something other than THIS CHAPTER made me panic. I transcended the full gamut of emotions and sublimated them all into mania. I ate my body weight in nutella. I co-opted someone into formatting and called in friends to read drafts. I…

View original post 803 more words

So what now??

Goal of Post: To come up with a plan/ a to-do list for the research side of my life for this year.


So I have submitted my PhD. My viva is booked for the 19th April, less than a month away. Im on the dole – I have to apply for 2 positions a week to get my dole money. I live with my parents which is driving me mad, and provides many excuses for not getting any work done. I have an interview at the OU, which went really well for a ‘people-based’ role as a Student Registration & Enquiry Assistant. However I need to start preparing for my viva, and thinking about my PhD publications, and trying to get my research career off the ground.

Goals for this month:

  1. Prepare for viva (also includes roughly identifying 1) planning potential papers and 2) areas of expertise).
  2. Apply for jobs that I enjoy and are useful to my career = stepping stone, since I am not financially desperate enough to work in a call centre.

Goals for this year:

  1. Identify potential papers from PhD
  2. Identify my research areas of expertise
  3. Identify research areas that I’m interested in exploring and are recession proof.
  4. Volunteering with conservation projects/ citizen science/ science communication stuff…
  5. Start writing up papers to be published!!

Action Plan for Viva preparation:

  1. Read over thesis without a pen in my hand or a notebook nearby.
  2. Go over websites for ‘preparing for your viva’ and books, and use tips/ potential questions.
  3. Contact Luton Uni for using their library (Luton library has no power sockets for laptops, although it does have wi-fi).
  4. Form profiles of examiners research areas and their take on my thesis.
  5. Prepare for Viva!!