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Rideal Travel Bursary Recipient, Jessica Bonham, Reports from Amsterdam

Jessica Bonham

15 Jul 2015

Jessica Bonham was awarded a Rideal Travel Bursary in 2015. Here, she reports on how her attendance at the 5th International Colloids Conference helped her broaden her research and gave her the opportunity to present a poster at a large international audience for the first time.

‘In June 2015 I attended the 5th International Colloids Conference held in the NH Krasnapolsky Hotel in Dam square, Amsterdam. The conference was attended by over 360 people from over 50 different countries from across the globe, varying from highly experienced professors to early career scientists and PhD students.

‘At the conference there were 5 plenary lectures, 14 keynote speakers, 3 parallel sessions, a poster session with almost 300 posters and an award lecture given by Keith Johnston. These presentations covered a wide range of topics including colloidal materials, surfaces, self-assembly and novel applications of these materials.

‘The conference began with a plenary lecture given by Jacob Israelachvili on dynamic dependent molecular interactions in colloidal and bio-colloidal systems. Other plenary speakers included Katharina Landfester who discussed the construction of nanocapsule systems and Anna Balazs who talked about designing self-regulated, self-propelled microcapsules. There was a huge variety of topics covered including a number that were relevant to my research, for example; keynote speaker, Regine Van Klitzing, who talked about multiresponsive polymer coatings based on hydrogel microparticles, Beatriu Escuder who talked about functional molecular gels and Tim Still who discussed colloidal hydrogel particles.

‘The conference also allowed me to broaden my research interests by introducing me to areas of colloid chemistry that I would not have experienced in Bristol. The scope of novel chemistries and applications presented at the conference allowed me to consider the impact of my own research in the wider scientific community and provided me with inspiration for further experiments.

‘During the poster session I was given the opportunity to present a poster entitled ‘Thermo-sensitive microgels in non-aqueous solvents’. This was my first chance to present my work at such a large international conference and I received interest from a number of attendees. I exchanged ideas with other students who are working in similar areas and received innovative ideas for my research. This chance to network and meet scientists from across the globe was an invaluable experience that could prove essential in my future career.

‘I would like to thank the SCI-RSC Rideal Trust for giving me the opportunity to attend and present at this conference as well as the conference organisers for running such a successful event.’

Jessica Bonham
PhD student, University of Bristol

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