IA2015On the 7th December, the University of Sheffield presented Ignite Academy 2015!
6.30pm-9pm, Adelphi Room, Crucible Theatre

+ FREE ENTRY + 21x 5min presentations
What are the modern mysteries, problems and questions that shape the research we do across our university? What are the current small niggles and big challenges that research can help us face?

What is Ignite? Ignite is a geek event that is held in over 100 cities worldwide. At the events, Ignite presenters share their research passions, using 20 slides that auto-advance every 15 seconds, making a total of just five minutes.
What was learned?
We covered a broad range of topics from departments across the University. The spirit of Ignite Academy is simply about education, learning, teaching and sharing ideas with the people of Sheffield.
Who was this event for? Each talk was pitched for a public audience so everyone was welcome. Ignite Academy is a chance to hear about new projects, exciting ideas, leading thinking, and up to the minute innovation.


1. Vicky Grant @missvagrant
Embracing the mystery of irritable bowel syndrome through an appreciative lens
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a complex health condition without a clear pathology or a reliable care pathway. How then can we live well with this condition? This talk will explain how we are asking this question to the patients themselves and, through the use of performative storytelling, we are creating a preferred future for people living with IBS.
2. Peter Redgrave
Parkinson’s disease: Where did my habits go?
When we perform automatic habits specific circuits in the brain are engaged. A part of these circuits seems to be particularly vulnerable in Parkinson’s disease. Can precise measurements of the loss of automatic habits be used to detect the onset of Parkinson’s disease before its clinical signs become apparent?
3. Val Derbyshire @valster11
It's no mystery at all! Why read romance novels when we know the ending?
In 1793, popular writer of romances and ‘sentimental novels’, Susanna Rowson remarked “I wonder that the novel readers are not tired of reading one story so many times, with only the variation of its being told different ways.” Yet, despite the fact that readers are already anticipating the inevitable happy ending from the moment they open a romance novel, these novels remain more popular than ever. Why, when we know how the story is going to end, do readers find romance reading such a deeply satisfying experience?
4. Nik Reeves-McLaren @AcadeNik
CSI: Materials
We use a technique called X-ray diffraction to figure out how atoms are arranged in materials like those used in the lithium-ion batteries in smartphones or electric vehicles. Find out about the technique, and how we can use it to make better battery materials!
5. Aneurin Kennerley @MagneticDr_K
Mind Reading, Magic and the Occasional Scientific Explanation
Mind-reading, perhaps through modern mentalists such as Uri Gellar & Derren Brown, has remained ever popular and intriguing.  Since the origin of the concept in the late 19th century, claims for the existence of clairvoyance have not been supported by published scientific evidence. Although science is yet to prove the ability of the brain to gain information about an object, person, or location through means other than the known senses, research using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) technology has provided demonstrations of thought identification; in some sense, mind reading.
6. Christopher Worrall @ChrisDWorrall
The Press's Construction of Political Reality
My research, fired by modern examples, will look at how the birth of the 'tabloid' press in Britain contributed to changing the relationship between politician and the general public. The alteration of political facts and the refocusing of media interests onto 'human interest' and entertainment moulded politics into being a topic either of emotion or of insignificance. This change in the discourse is something we are living with today, where the gap between the political and the public seems wider than ever.
7. Ian Sammy @EmMedRis
He Went to Bed and Bumped His Head - Will He Get Up in the Morning?
Injuries in older people are very different from those in younger adults - they suffer more serious damage from minor injuries, and are more likely to be hospitalized or die from these. As the population ages, we are struggling to provide older trauma victims with the care that they need. This study looks at the reasons why older people do worse when they are injured - the results will surprise you!
8. Albert Attom @albertattom
I will ‘speak out’ in that organisational climate of silence
This presentation will explore the positive effects that 'Speaking Out' and the promotion of 'Employee Voice' can have within organisations, especially health care organisations. With this we will outline the impact that employee voice has on patient standards, patient care and patient outcomes. All this is aimed at giving us a better appreciation of the concept of 'Voice' and it's importance to our health care provision in the UK.
9. Liz Trueman @MogMildred
The Frightened Enlightened
The aftermath of the French Revolution: the tattered remains of the Enlightened Ideal lie amongst the smoking ruins of Paris. Enter the electrifying Gothic movement, terrifying the children of the Revolution all over Europe. Do these Gothic tales represent a 'group therapy' outlet for the survivors to relive and understand their experiences under the Reign of Terror?
10. Vanessa Sorce-Lévesque @__vm
Negotiating the Invisible
How do you talk about acousmatic music, that music yuo hear and you don't know where it's coming from? In seeking to demystify a little-known subject, one may be tempted to use images. But what do you do when the very essence of your research is invisible by definition?
11. Alastair Goldman
Sex: Can it help us fight cancer?
The cells that make sperm and eggs use some proteins that are not used much in other parts of the body.  But some of these proteins keep showing up in cancer cells.  What they are doing there is a mystery!  Can they be used to signal the pressence of a cancer, or might they even represent new drug targets for cancer therapy?
12. Rebekka Niepelt @RNiepelt
Detecting the mystery of stumbling over your own words
Many of us know that we often stumble over our own words, especially in situations such as presentations. This presentation will introduce a new assessment tool which could maybe help to localise the 'break-down' in our speech system when this happens. Subsequently, specific support could be developed and help to overcome speech difficulties.
13. Helen Kennedy @hmtk
What should concern us about social media?
As we post, share, like, friend and follow on Facebook, Twitter, SnapChat and Instagram and other social media platforms, we create data. Social media data is a valuable resource – it tells companies and organisations what we think and feel and what our preferences are. This talk will unravel the mystery of who is monitoring our social media data, for what purposes, with what effects, and what should concern us about it.
14. Kate Taylor-Jones @KateETaylorJ
Sex, Drugs and Synchronised Swimming: Girlhood in Cinema
On the cusp of adulthood and linked into many conflicting issues including weight, sex, education, employment and sometimes motherhood; girlhood is a time of life that wider society has a very hard time to relate to. From Frozen to the Hunger Games - girls have become a bigger part of cinema than ever before and studying them allows us an insight into this period of life both by establishing the mainstream thoughts on the issue but also by allowing girls to offer insights into their own lives. This presentation will explore how recent cinema gives us an insight into girlhood and what this can mean for real-life girls.
15. Roderick Nicolson @rod_nicolson
Positive Dyslexia: Why society needs dyslexic people
Positive Psychology tells us that working to our strengths is the way to happiness and success. In my work on Positive Dyslexia I have revealed that dyslexic adults have the capability for distinctive strengths in the 'Dyslexia Decathlon' of social skills, work skills, cognitive skills and unconventional thinking. Here I show that these skills are precisely the '21st century skills' needed to transform work, life and school, and that society will benefit enormously from recognising and fostering such skills.
16. Hannah Isles @hannah_isles
From jellyfish to zebrafish: lighting up the immune response
Zebrafish are becoming a more widely used model in the scientific community for studying human disease. The transparency of zebrafish embryos makes them extremely useful for visualising cells of interest in vivo, in real time. By labelling zebrafish immune cells with the jellyfish green fluorescent protein (GFP), we can observe and manipulate the inflammatory response in the hope of finding novel targets for drug development to treat inflammatory diseases.
17. Scott Eldridge II @seldridge
No longer ink-stained, still a wretch
Journalists have always embraced an anti-heroic identity, and whether referring to British 'grubbies' of Fleet Street, or 'muck-rakers' in the U.S., the way we picture hard-scrabble investigative journalists is often textured by such colourful portraits. Now, in the digital age and with stories of WikiLeaks and Edward Snowden, we see that portrait morph and change and take on a digital hue. This paints the journalist as a 'digital anti-hero' who embraces the secretive dimension of leaks and whistleblowing, wrapped in narratives of cryptography, and with a spy's flair for intrigue and escape to deliver important news to the public.
18. Sofia Granados Aparici @sofia_sograap
The sleeping egg waiting for mysterious Prince Charming
This presentation will unveil some curiosities about the ovary: how eggs mature from their 'sleeping' state, what happens if there is a blip in this process and how science can contribute to improve women’s fertility.
19. Rachel Hughes @rachelhughes71
Who? "The Bloke Who Wrote Kes": Rediscovering Barry Hines
This talk will discuss my research: an archival study which focuses on rediscovering and revitalising Barry Hines' "lost works". It will also focus on the man behind the seminal work, Kes. Also, how I hope to start my own reading groups in the Sheffield and Barnsley in order to read Hines' works.
20. Anne Burns @AnneLBurns
Cows on Twitter: Marketing local milk on social media
Our Cow Molly is a family run Sheffield dairy that has established a strong presence on Twitter. This presentation will look at how photographs are used by the company to communicate a key message to customers, regarding provenance, quality and freshness. I will show how images of cows, ice creams and stockists are used by Our Cow Molly to not only persuade us to buy local, but to celebrate in the heritage of produce that is Made In Sheffield.