There is a really friendly, relaxed atmosphere
at Emma. A home where you feel comfortable
Charlie, 2nd Year
Directors of Studies
Other Teaching Fellows
Dr Tobias Wauer
It’s 8pm and I’m about to start a 12-hour shift at the national COVID-19 testing centre in Milton Keynes. Truckloads of boxes with transparent plastic bags just arrived and a brief announcement is made: 15,000 patient swabs. For now, the mood among the team is cheerful and enthusiastic, but I know it will have morphed into exhaustion and fatigue by the end of the night.
I came to study Philosophical Theology via a degree in English Literature, and in particular through a desire to understand better the relationship between literary form and metaphysical content in such texts as the fourteenth century poem, "Pearl", and Milton's "Paradise Lost".
Robert Macfarlane, Fellow and Part II Director of Studies in English, on his studies, writing, teaching and research.
Alex Jeffrey, a Lecturer in Human Geography, discusses his research into conflict, state-building and the possibilities for justice in a divided world.
Japan, books, prints, popular culture, unusual scripts and cats: these are the great passions of my life.
From studying Natural Sciences, to researching spectroscopy, to teaching Chemical Engineering and, throughout, playing tiddlywinks.
I have been interested in volcanoes for well over 30 years. My research group, in the Department of Earth Sciences, studies magmatic processes. We want to answer simple questions. How is magma generated? How does it move towards the surface? Where is it stored before volcanic eruptions? What is the relationship between magmatism and environmental change?
Since high school I have been fascinated by Particle Physics. The fact that humankind has been able to develop a profound understanding of nature at this most fundamental level is a remarkable achievement.
Over the past year, research programmes have had to adapt to closures of laboratories and libraries. Niklas describes how he has made the best of the challenges he’s encountered.
Callista is in her first year at Emma, studying for a PhD in education. When flights were cancelled in March she was one of several students who couldn’t return home, and she describes how she’s learned to manage while far away from her family.
The best replacement for bone is bone itself’. This might have been a fun little sound bite delivered in one of the undergraduate lectures in my first year, but it is also the statement that I can safely credit as having sparked my interest in biomaterials.
As Fellows at Emmanuel we often find ourselves dividing our time between different professional activities: teaching, administration and research. Term-time is, as would be expected, a time of frantic teaching and pastoral care; vacations offer an opportunity to research and reflect; across both we plan future research projects and teaching courses. Over the decade that I have been fortunate enough to be part of the college one word has brought these disparate activities together: access.
Technologies have become a staple component of twenty-first century social life. Social media platforms connect people around the globe, modern video games stream live events to millions of users and video calls help those experiencing ‘social distancing’ to keep in touch with friends and family.
The future is uncertain. But we know that if we don’t think now about the legacy of our actions we won’t enjoy the prosperous future we deserve.
Writing this article in the middle of the COVID-19 crisis, it might seem churlish to ask readers to focus their attention on another impending healthcare apocalypse. However, my academic research has applications in one such area: the growing worldwide problem of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
Early-modern Japan (1600-1867) witnessed the production of a vast amount of texts, both handwritten and commercially printed by means of woodblocks. These materials are the key to unlock a variety of disciplines when studying early-modern Japan, and yet they present multiple challenges.
DNA molecules released by tissues deep within our bodies allow doctors to take a non-invasive glimpse into our health. This technology holds promise for early and safer detection of disorders, even from before birth, and throughout life.
Human rights are something we all have simply by virtue of our existence. Natural and universal, they are timeless.
The past shapes our lives in so many ways. Identities, habits and responses are forged in relation to it, no matter how much we think our eyes are on the future.
"The hallmark of a developed society is not that even the poor have cars. It is that even the affluent use public transport".
In 1990, after travelling through the solar system for 13 years, NASA’s Voyager 1 spacecraft turned to look back at the inner solar system and captured a final few images before its cameras lost power.
Structural engineering is sometimes described as the Second Oldest Profession; the human race has been building homes and bridges from time immemorial.
‘Frustration drives development’. The theory, proposed in a book on child development that I read while on maternity leave, was that babies would never learn to crawl and walk unless they were frustrated with sitting still. It is also true in my veterinary clinical and research career.
Aeroacoustics is the science of sound induced by the flow of air; initial research in the field was motivated by the need to reduce aircraft noise.
Buses rumble past the roadside café where our meeting is taking place. The waiter brings over two copper trays of Bosnian coffee: on each an ornate coffee pot (džezva) sits alongside a cup (fildzan) and a cluster of sugar lumps.
Kyoto in the 1660s: here the thriving economy of early modern Japan had become the cradle of a robust consumer society.
Self-organisation is an intrinsic property of matter. Take any collection of molecules, and under the right conditions they will form an ordered arrangement.
Animals, including us, are most often studied as individuals. However, looking at them down a microscope, they can also be seen as societies of cells, surpassing the complexity of beehives or ant colonies, and far more harmonious than human societies.
If I had to summarise my research in a single sentence then I would say that I’m interested in waves of all kinds: how they are generated, how they propagate and how they interact with other objects.
Emmanuel's group of late eleventh- and early twelfth-century books, either imported from Normandy or copied in England by Norman scribes, bear testimony to the fresh literary impulses brought to England after the Norman Conquest in 1066.
The demand for places at lunch is not only driven by an appetite for the excellent food, but also by a recognition of the potential for discovery and enrichment, which cannot be found when eating sandwiches while hunched over a computer keyboard!
During Gatherings of Members, it rarely takes long for people to start reminiscing about their time as undergraduates. Amusing (sometimes, bawdy) tales might be told about events that occurred many years in the past.
In 1998, my final year as an undergraduate, I was introduced to the text: ‘The following shall be prohibited as incompatible with the common market: all agreements between undertakings, decisions by associations of undertakings and concerted practices which may affect trade between Member States and which have as their object or effect the prevention, restriction or distortion of competition within the common market.’
My first acquaintance with computer science was during my first year in high school, where I participated in the RoboCup Olympiad. I found it a perfect match for my enthusiasm for solving maths problems.
I studied English as an undergraduate at Emma and was able to return this year to pursue an MPhil in film and screen studies thanks to the generosity of donors to the Late 80s Fund and other Emma members. It’s been the most productive and rewarding period I can remember.
Tinkering is a newly identified creative, inquiry-based, construction approach to education, which focuses on learning by doing, by trial-and-error and through play.
I am extraordinarily grateful to have been awarded a full postgraduate studentship, through the College’s research studentship fund and the incredible generosity of two Emma members.
I began my PhD in pharmacology at Cambridge in 2015, upon completion of my degree in pharmacy at the Ludwig Maximillian University of Munich. This opportunity would have not been possible without generous help from the Late 80s Fund and two other members of Emmanuel.
Having spent 2014–15 at Harvard University on a Herchel Smith Scholarship, I was delighted to return to Emmanuel this year (I completed my BA in English in 2014) to study for an MPhil in Criticism and Culture.
My interests in food and agriculture, rural livelihoods in Asia, and economic development combine into the question: how does climate change affect the long-term livelihoods of poor residents in the rural uplands of Nepal?
Through the generosity of the Late 80s fund and a member, I was awarded a full studentship, enabling me to study for an MPhil in Modern and Contemporary Literature. My MPhil dissertation investigates the relationship between poetry and parenthood.
I came to Emmanuel in 2008 to read Modern & Medieval Languages; through the support of a member and a Derek Brewer Research Studentship I am now studying for a PhD.
Before I graduated from Emma last year, I knew I was interested in taking my philosophical studies further with the MPhil course and a potential career in academia. Thanks to Emmanuel, I had the funding to make these further studies possible. With financial backing of the Late Eighties and other College funds, I am now in the final term of my MPhil with a conditional offer to continue at Cambridge for a PhD.
My research examines how notions of childhood and womanhood are constructed in the progressive education of the Reggio Emilia Approach, combining sociology, history and gender studies in an interdisciplinary study.
My work focuses on language, and asks how speakers of English went about learning foreign languages in a period when travel, trade and exploration took them further than ever before and in greater numbers.
I came to Emmanuel in 2009 to study for an MPhil in Musicology. I am now in my first year of studying for a PhD in Music, thanks to the support of a Derek Brewer Research Studentship.
A Lord Northfield Scholarship and an MPhil Studentship enabled me to pursue an MPhil in development studies, driven largely by my study of the post-colonial literatures of Africa and the Middle East.
I came to Emmanuel in 2006 to study for a PhD, funded by a Derek Brewer Research Studentship and the C S Gray Fund, alongside the part-time post of Assistant Chaplain.
For the last four years, Emmanuel has welcomed post-doctoral researchers from both the arts and sciences. We hope to be able to accommodate more in the future as associate members of the College.