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Durham University

Technician Commitment

A message to our Technicians

Dear Members of the Technical Staff

As we slowly recover from the depthsof the pandemic and return to some degree of normality, I would like once again to acknowledge and thank the outstanding work of our technical staff. There are multiple examples of our technical staff playing essential roles in supporting the return of research and education towards normal capacity, this in conjunction with the normal dutiesour staff perform. As Chair of the Technician Commitment, I write again to thank all our Technical staff for your continued effort and contribution in supporting Durham University. Thank you.

The Technician Commitment Steering Group has been working hard on your behalf, with members developing support activities, producing newsletters and planning for future in-person events. I am pleasedto confirm that we are planning future networking activities for our technical staff, where colleagues can meet, share views, and get to know one another more over refreshments. In addition, we are planning for the next annual meeting of the technical staff which will be similar to the highly successful event we ran prior to lockdown. The pandemic has essentially delayed our ability to run such an interactive meeting, but now I am pleased to say that this isnow planned to happen in June 22. The meeting will be opened by our new Vice Chancellor, Professor Karen O’Brien, and followed by presentations from internal and external speakers on matters related to our technical staff. Please look out for announcements by email and on our website for more information about these meetings, and I look forward to seeing you there.

Professor Stefan Przyborski

Chair Technician Commitment Steering Group

Dean of Infrastructure



follow the link for more information

(9 Mar 2022)

A few fine examples of “Technicians make it happen”!

Covid–19 has changed the way we all have had to work, and the Technical Team have been a big part of this change for the Psychology department.

(7 Mar 2022) » More about A few fine examples of “Technicians make it happen”!

Puzzle Box

The Psychology Technical team have also been quite busy making a puzzle box! For Apes! Our super researchers are looking at how bonobo apes cooperate and use communication to coordinate their cooperation. 

(6 Mar 2022) » More about Puzzle Box

Psychology technicians make rubber hands

Psychology technicians at the top of the science site have been busy making new equipment for teaching our practical’s. 

(5 Mar 2022) » More about Psychology technicians make rubber hands

Congratulations to our apprentices

Ashley-Jess Davenport completed her Laboratory Technician Level 3 apprenticeship working as part of our Chemistry Technical Team. Ashley-Jess attended Newcastle College on a day release basis, where she covered a variety of modules to support the Level 3 apprenticeship.

Read more on Ashley-Jess progress

(1 Mar 2022) » More about Congratulations to our apprentices

University Museum Technicians – working on site throughout Covid

Technical staff have worked on site at the University’s Museums throughout the pandemic ensuring the safety and security of the collections as well as undertaking major new development projects.

(1 Nov 2021) » More about University Museum Technicians – working on site throughout Covid

Royal Institution Christmas Lectures - Placement Opportunity for Technical Colleagues

The Technician Commitment is delighted to announce that we are once again partnering with the Royal Institution to offer two placements for technicians from Technician Commitment Signatory Institutions to work on the 2021 Royal Institution Christmas Lectures and applications are open now! 

(18 Aug 2021) » More about Royal Institution Christmas Lectures - Placement Opportunity for Technical Colleagues

Outstanding Technician of the Year

Outstanding Technician of the Year

This year again technicians will be recognised in the biggest celebration of UK higher education – the Times Higher Education (THE) Awards. Outstanding Technician of the Year opened for entries on 8 April 2021 and the deadline for entries was Wednesday 9 June 2021.

The award, sponsored by the Technician Commitment , will be given to an individual whose exceptional practical skills, commitment and vision have enabled the highest quality of teaching, research or knowledge transfer. 

(4 Aug 2021) » More about Outstanding Technician of the Year

Research England funded TALENT Programme.

The Technician Commitment is a partner on the Research England funded TALENT Programme. Part of the TALENT programme is a national Policy Commission that will publish its report in late 2021. We are really keen to have strong imagery of the technician community throughout the report which needs to represent the diversity of our workforce, range of disciplines, skills and institutions.

(4 Aug 2021) » More about Research England funded TALENT Programme.

PAPIN Prize nominations

Ian ChaplinThin Section Technician in the Department of Earth Sciences has been nominated for a Papin prize in the Category of The Professor Lord Bhattacharyya Lifetime Achievement Award.

Ian has worked at Durham University in Earth Sciences making thin sections for 17 years in as a Junior Technician and returning as a Senior Technician. In between Ian has gained a huge amount of experience, working all over the world over his nearly 60 year’s career. All this knowledge is now back in Durham>
His thin sections have supported undergraduate teaching and research. He has made thin sections of meteorites, dinosaur teeth and even cinder toffee.

The Papin Prize awards will be presented at the UK Higher Education Technician Summit on November 10th 2021

Papin Prizes (

(23 Jul 2021) » More about PAPIN Prize nominations