Innovation and Research Round-Up

June Edition

In this month's Innovation and Research Round-Up, our researchers have been making discoveries on volcanic islands and sharing how even just 10 minutes in nature can help our wellbeing. 

‘A common language and shared understanding of family violence?'

Dr Cara Penry Williams, alongside Professor Tonya Stebbins from La Trobe University, have co-authored a blog which explores language around family violence. The blogs discusses how using linguistics can help look for patterns in language through a range of different lenses. 

Third-year student published in research journal

Third-year undergraduate Human Biology student Jenni Chambers has had her review accepted and published in this year’s issue of McGill Science Undergraduate Research Journal (MSURJ).

Jenni’s article on Bacterial Interactions Affecting Chemotherapy Effectiveness was originally written as part of her assignment and, with minor tweaks and amends, it was selected for publication.

‘The Big Challenge: A case study presenting interdisciplinary development of employability skills’

Dr Caroline Harvey, alongside colleagues from the University of Derby have co-authored books chapters in a new book: The Big Challenge: A case study presenting interdisciplinary development of employability skills’. Our researchers have explored topics including ‘Developing employability skills through working in a Law Clinic’, ‘Employers and students’ perceptions of skills and knowledge needed by accounting graduates in Greece’, through to ‘using a professional skills module to develop student confidence’ and everything in between. 

Derbyshire, V. G., Fretwell, L. & Harvey, C. (2023, in press). The Big Challenge: A case study presenting interdisciplinary development of employability skills. In S. L Hansen & K. Daniels (Eds). How to Enable the Employability of University Graduates. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing. 

Dr Jordan Phethean presents new research on Iceland-style volcanic islands 

In May, the European Geoscience Union (EGU) met for their annual conference in Vienna, where over 18,000 researchers from 107 countries gathered to share exciting new ideas in the geosciences, including: mitigations for climate change, securing water resources for future generations, geodynamics of volcanic hazards, and GeoEnergy solutions for a net zero future. 
Within the theme of geodynamics of volcanic hazards, Dr Jordan Phethean, Lecturer in Geoscience at the University of Derby, presented new research, showing that volcanic islands such as Iceland may not require hot mantle plume upwellings (aka: the lava lamp model) to generate the observed volcanism. The new idea hinges on the concepts of Latent Heat (the phenomenon that allows ice-cubes to keep your drink at exactly 0˚C for long periods while they melt) and thermally induced density (the reason your microwaved brew tends to be hotter at the top than the bottom), which together drive excessive convection of the mantle. 
The models show more convection leads to more volcanic eruptions, providing new insights into not only the volcanic hazards of Iceland-style volcanism, but also into the release of carbon dioxide during volcanic eruptions - a major contributor to global emissions. 
As a participant, Dr Phethean also engaged with critical new ideas in GeoEnergy solutions for a net zero future, such as: carbon capture and storage methods, and geothermal energy systems, and hydrogen storage infrastructure. He brings the latest and boldest ideas back to the University for the Zero Carbon theme, providing cutting-edge knowledge to our MSc GeoEnergy students. 
As a conference convenor, Dr Phethean chaired the session 'Towards new understandings of complex continental margins and oceans', which aimed to bring together new ideas in plate tectonics to better understand rifts and how they can be used to mitigate climate and resource risks in the future. The ECR-led session gained significant attention, requiring splitting into both poster and oral sessions for the 25 speakers to give their presentations to the hundreds of session attendees. The success of the session puts Derby on the map as a world-leader in this field of geoscience, and a Special Issue on this topic (co-edited by Dr Phethean) is currently open in the EGU journal Solid Earth.  

The positive link between the natural world and our health 

Researchers have found that 10 to 30 minutes of sitting outside in a natural environment can help improve our health. Professor Miles Richardson says: “The psychological benefits of connecting with nature are feeling good and functioning well — and feeling life is worthwhile.” Miles and his team of researchers have found that connection to nature is associated with personal growth and well-being.  

Developing a clean-energy system for rural African communities 

Researchers at the University are developing a unique energy generator and storage system that could reduce premature deaths in parts of Ghana and Nigeria. The team were awarded funding through the Innovate UK’s Energy Catalyst programme and are working in partnership with Thermoelectric Conversion Systems. The team have already completed a feasibility study for a device that combines the ability to use concentrated heat from the sun for cooking with a thermoelectric generator. 

Find out more about the clean-energy generator


Discover our researchers' publications released in May.

Discover all of our publications

  • Colman, R., Kirkman, A., Jackson, J., Goldburn, L., Ozaki, A. and Kotera, Y. 2023. Breast cancer understanding among university students: A rapid review of cross-country comparisons. Archives of Breast Cancer. 10 (2), pp. 1-11.   
  • Khan, A. 2023. Privacy Preservation in the Internet of Vehicles using Local Differential Privacy and IOTA Ledger. Springer Cluster Computing .   
  • Aurélie Szwed, Stefan Schaufelbühl, Alain Gallusser, Denis Werner and Olivier Delémont 2023. Was a 3D-printed firearm discharged? - Study of traces produced by the use of six fully 3D-printed firearms. Forensic Science International. pp. 1-35.   
  • Nicholls, S., Pote, L., Christie, C. and King, G 2023. Anthropometric and morphological characteristics of elite male cricket bowlers and batters over time: A systematic review. International Journal of Sports Science & Coaching.   
  • Dimitriadou, A. and Andros Gregoriou 2023. Predicting Bitcoin Prices Using Machine Learning. Entropy. 25 (5), pp. 1-10.   
  • Helal, R, Ali, S., Strecker, S and Weir, D 2023. Navigating wasta in business practices in Lebanon. Thunderbird International Business Review. pp. 1-10.   
  • Hooley, T. 2023. Impartiality: A critical review. Journal of the National Institute for Career Education and Counselling (NICEC). 50 (1), pp. 41-53.   
  • Bartram, A. 2023. Animals in the creative process: embracing interspecies collaboration and learning from others within creativity . British Animal Studies Network: Transitional Animals. Online 11 - 11 May 2023  
  • Bird, J., Bird, L. and Collard-Stokes, G. 2023. Social action art therapy and the enhancement of political imagination. Journal of Applied Arts and Health. Mar 2023 (14), pp. 47-61.  
  • McEwan, K., Krogh, K. S., Dunlop, K., Khan, M. and Krogh, A. 2023. Virtual Forest Bathing Programming as Experienced by Disabled Adults with Mobility Impairments and/or Low Energy: A Qualitative Study. Forests. 14 (5), pp. 1-19.   
  • Garza-Reyes, J.A. and Maldonado-Guzman, G. 2023. Beyond Lean Manufacturing and Sustainable Performance: Are the Circular Economy practices worth pursuing? Management of Environmental Quality. pp. 1-20.   
  • Kumar Detwal, P., Agrawal, R., Samadhiya, A., Kumar, A. and Garza-Reyes, J.A. 2023. Research developments in Sustainable Supply Chain Management considering Optimization and Industry 4.0 Techniques: A Systematic Review. Benchmarking: An International Journal. pp. 1-21.  
  • Malik, A., Sharma, S., Batra, I., Sharma.C., Kaswan, M.S. and Garza-Reyes, J. 2023. Industrial Revolution and Environmental Sustainability: An Analytical Interpretation of Research Constituents in Industry 4.0. International Journal of Lean Six Sigma. pp. 1-28.   
  • Frederico, G.F., Kumar, V., Garza-Reyes, J.A., Martins, R.A., Kumar, A. 2023. Guest editorial: Performance measurement in supply chains during disruptions: lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic. International Journal of Quality and Reliability Management.  
  • Hooton, A., Zhou, Y., Ferraro, F. and Ribchester, C. 2023. The effects of Latino Dance intervention on academic and general self-efficacy with left-behind children: An experimental study in China. Frontiers in Psychology.   
  • Jesse C. Beck Schildt, Colin A. Booth, Horry, R. and Grazyna Wiejak-Roy 2023. Stakeholder Opinions of Implementing Environmental Management Systems in the Construction Sector of the U.S. Buildings. 13 (15), pp. 1-18.   
  • Zhang, N., Wood, O., Yang, Z. and Xie, J. 2023. AI-Guided Computing Insights into a Thermostat Monitoring Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Sensors. 23 (9), pp. 1-16.   
  • Stephanie Allen, Sophie Williams, Jenny Hallam and Jackson, J. 2012. Breastfeeding Experiences of Women Who have Survived Intimate Partner Violence. Journal of health visiting. 11 (5).