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Durham University

Research Themes

Durham University produces world leading and world changing research. Here are some examples where we have particular strength.

Surface Science

Energy and Clean Growth

Cosmology and Astronomy

Heritage and Culture

Hazard and Risk

Featured video

Research at Durham

Breathlessness, ancient manuscripts and geothermal energy are among the diverse subject areas benefiting from world leading research at Durham University.

Here academics from across the University talk about their research, and how Durham’s collaborative environment encourages them to explore new approaches to research.

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Thought leadership

Alien life is out there, but our theories are probably steering us away from it

If we discovered evidence of alien life, would we even realise it? Life on other planets could be so different from what we’re used to that we might not recognise any biological signatures that it produces. Dr Peter Vickers explains how, in the quest to find extraterrestrial life, scientists must be thoroughly open-minded.

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Featured event

Norman Cornish: The Sketchbooks

16 November 2019 - 23 February 2020 , 10:00 to 17:00, Dennyson Stoddart Gallerty, Palace Green Library

For the renowned north-eastern artist Norman Cornish MBE (1919-2014), sketching was second nature and an inherent part of his everyday life. This exhibition of little seen sketchbooks will present a new dimension to the artist’s practice, focusing on his observations of life, landscapes, and family, revealing the inner artistic processes behind some of his most iconic works.

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PhD opportunities

Facilities and equipment

Research institutes and centres