Stage 1 PhD presentation
A few weeks ago I passed my first stage of the PhD receiving my confirmation of candidature. The presentation was to a panel consisting of Stephen Healy and Alex Baumber who had been provided my paper in advance. The presentation was not as heavily theoretical as the paper and focused more on what I thought people would most want to know:
- What are the drivers of the research?
- What the research will look like
- A brief overview of the theoretical and practical background.
I did multiple versions of the presentation and practiced it with a few people, including someone who is just finishing up their PhD on resilience in transitions. I completely reworked it after speaking with them, removing some of the more theoretical parts and focusing more on describing what I was doing. I am glad that I did this, as the feedback from the panel was that I clearly defined the scope well and identifying appropriate methods. They also said I had successfully demonstrated a synthesis of the background theoretical concepts.
I guess the lesson is to be succinct, clear, and not overwhelm the panel. I recall something that Professor Mary Graham said once about knowledge. That you should not try to own it or accumulate it. For this presentation, I tried not to show off and demonstrate that I had read “all of the things”. It was more about making sure that what I was doing made sense to an outside audience.
Here is the presentation: