- 18 March 2014
Graham Robertston, 26, a biomedical engineer at the University of Strathclyde, won the gold award at SET for Britain in the House of Commons for the excellence of his research.
Graham presented his research to dozens of politicians and a panel of expert judges, as part of the poster competition SET for Britain, on Monday 17th March.
His research, growing brain cells on a chip to mimic neurological diseases – such as Alzheimer’s – aiming to provide a platform to test drugs, was judged against 59 other shortlisted researchers’ work and came out a winner.
Graham says: “I’m ecstatic to win – it’s been great to chat about my research with a variety of people from different backgrounds, and also my local MP John Robertson.”
The silver award went to Amelie Heuer-Jungemann, a PhD student from the University of Southampton, for her work on cancer detection and treatment. The bronze award was presented to Morelia Camacho-Cervantes, a PhD student at the University of St Andrews, for her work on the behaviour of invasive fish.
SET for Britain aims to help politicians understand more about the UK’s thriving science and engineering base and rewards some of the strongest scientific and engineering research being undertaken in the UK.
Dr Mark Downs, chief executive of the Society of Biology, says: “Scientists and politicians both have major roles in addressing some of society’s biggest challenges, from climate change to food security. SET for Britain is a rare opportunity for politicians to meet some of our most promising young scientists and understand their work.
“It is important that MPs make policy decisions informed by evidence, and a greater mutual understanding between MPs and scientists will help towards this.”
Philip Wright, CEO of The Physiological Society, says: “The UK has an excellent biomedical research base that is underpinned by our strength in physiology. SET for Britain provides a unique opportunity for our representatives in parliament to see the fruits of the UK’s research spend first hand, and the enthusiasm and drive of these up-coming scientists.”
The gold award in the biological sciences category was sponsored by BP, the silver award was sponsored by Germains Seed Technology and the bronze award was sponsored by the Institute of Biomedical Science.
The Parliamentary and Scientific Committee run the event in collaboration with the Council for Mathematical Sciences, the Institute of Physics, The Physiological Society, the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Royal Society of Chemistry, the Society of Biology and the Society of Chemical Industry, with financial support from BP, the Clay Mathematics Institute, Essar, INEOS, Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG), Germains Seed Technology, Boeing, the Bank of England and the Institute of Biomedical Science.