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Thought Leadership

Lib Dems are right to put arts education at the heart of their plans for culture

The Liberal Democrat political party has listed 'culture, media and sport' as a key priority in its manifesto ahead of the General Election. Professor Simon James, from our Department of English Studies, explores the significance of this in more detail.
Little boy drawing watermelon

Sierra Leone’s bushmeat markets pose serious health hazards – we studied two for six months to find solutions

Dr Jack Jenkins and Professor Hannah Brown from our Department of Anthropology look at solutions to the serious health hazards posed by Sierra Leone’s bushmeat markets, and how lessons learned can inform strategies for reducing zoonotic disease risks in similar settings around the world.
A bushmeat trader handles a pangolin in a market in Southern Province, Sierra Leone

Does the state of the UK economy inspire confidence? An expert crunches the numbers

With UK inflation figures recently released, Dr Michael Nower from Durham University Business School has taken a deeper look at what they mean for the current state of the economy.
Two hands holding fountain pens above a paper containing graphs with coins sitting on the table

Carlo Acutis: what the first ‘millennial saint’ says about the Catholic church’s future

With Pope Francis reportedly clearing the way for Carlo Acutis to become the Catholic church's first millennial saint, Dr Liam Temple from our Department of Theology and Religion looks at what the significance of bestowing such an honour will mean for the church's future.
A shrine dedicated to Carlo Acutis, a London-born, Italian-raised candidate for sainthood. Inside St Peter's, a Catholic church in Hove, England.

Infected blood scandal – what you need to know

The findings of the UK’s Infected Blood Inquiry have been reported. Over 3,000 people have died after receiving contaminated blood products in the 1970s, 80s and 90s. Professor Emma Cave, of Durham Law School, and Professor Bobbie Farsides, of Brighton and Sussex Medical School, Co-Chairs of the Medical Ethics group for the Infected Blood Inquiry, set out the background to this scandal.
A clear blood bag with red blood in a clinical environment

From silent dialogues to vivid memories – here’s how the science of inner experience could transform gaming

Professor Charles Fernyhough from our Department of Psychology explains about his research on the inner experience and why he believes it has the power to transform the future of video games.
A man wearing a headset playing a video game

New faith schools in England could soon allocate all their places on religious grounds – here’s why that’s a bad idea

A proposed change to an admissions cap could see faith schools no longer having to offer 50% of their places to children from outside their religion. Professor Stephen Gorard, from our School of Education, explains why he believes such a move would be a bad decision.
A girl raises her hand next to a boy while learning in a classroom

Water cremation: sustainable body disposal is coming to Scotland – here are the benefits

A sustainable method of disposing the body after death called alkaline hydrolysis is set to be regulated in Scotland. Dr Georgina Robinson, from our Theology and Religion department, explains what advantages that will bring.
A lily to symbolise death

Arlene Holmes-Henderson: The Future is Fulbright!

This month, we see the Festival of Fulbright come to a close with a final event at the US Embassy on 8th May. In this piece, Dr Arlene Holmes-Henderson gives a wonderful insight into the festival that all began at Durham earlier this year.
Image of Dr Arlene Holmes-Henderson

Landmark Syriac Studies conference brings international research excellence to UK

A landmark conference about Syriac Studies brought more than 70 researchers from 20 countries to Durham last month. The event was a hub for academic collaboration and knowledge sharing. It was also a formative experience for early-career scholars. Here, the organisers reflect on the key highlights of the conference and why there has recently been a major revival of academic interest in Syriac Studies.
A group photo taken at the Syriac Studies in the UK conference

Peter Higgs’ famous particle discovery is now at the heart of strategies to unlock the secrets of the universe

Described as a "giant of particle physics", Peter Wade Higgs sadly died earlier this month. Dr Martin Bauer from our Physics department explains how Peter’s ground-breaking work means his legacy will live on.
Peter Higgs in a gown in 2013 on the day he received his honorary degree

Exploring Shakespeare through the art of dance

Professor David Fuller, from our Department of English Studies, discusses his passions for music, ballet and Shakespeare. His latest research explores how ballet can provide new insights into The Bard’s work.
Two ballet dancers performing, in black and white with dark background