• Question: What do you want to achieve

    Asked by Pippa&flo on 16 Jan 2024.
    • Photo: Hannah Marshall

      Hannah Marshall answered on 16 Jan 2024:


      I want to contribute to bettering patient’s lives by improving cancer treatments. I also would like to improve how we communicate with patients regarding their treatment to try and make it a little less scary!

    • Photo: Georgia Lambert

      Georgia Lambert answered on 16 Jan 2024:


      I would like to make even just a small contribution to improving how we understand the world around us. I think science is often only seen as the big once-in-a-lifetime discoveries people make. And while it would be amazing to discover something massive and exciting, most scientists rather make small discoveries that contribute to bigger questions. But contributing towards bigger questions is in itself very exciting since you are learning something new about the world that literally nobody before you ever knew!

    • Photo: Lisa Russell

      Lisa Russell answered on 16 Jan 2024:


      I want to change the treatment that leukaemia patients receive, to improve their chance of cure and reduce the nasty side effects of the treatment. I am lucky enough to say that I have already made changes to the way patients with leukaemia are treated. Next we need to collect the data and see if it has made a positive impact.

    • Photo: Zoe Vance

      Zoe Vance answered on 16 Jan 2024:


      I’ve always mainly wanted to know things that we didn’t know before, which is kind of the main point of research I suppose. I want to make the list of questions we can’t answer a little shorter! But in the past few years I’ve also started to feel that what I really want to achieve is having the knowledge we gain in research make it out into the world. It’s more fun if we’re able to share all our new discoveries and I think it’s also really important that people understand why we do this work and why it matters in their lives.

    • Photo: Neil Guthrie

      Neil Guthrie answered on 16 Jan 2024:


      I would like to contribute to as many of our students becoming applied sport/exercise/health scientists as I can. I also love promoting a career as a technician, and it would be great if I could inspire the next generation to consider this as a career!

    • Photo: Margaret Laurie

      Margaret Laurie answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      This is a great question, because honestly what I’ve wanted to achieve has changed a lot over the years and still changes now. So even if you’re not sure what you want to achieve or how you’re going to achieve it, having the freedom and choice to figure it out and try new things is something I have really enjoyed in my life, and a benefit I see of working as a scientist.

      Ultimately I want to have a positive impact on people and make a positive change to our society. I’ve been working on this by studying psychology and testing different ways that we can support people who think and learn differently, who may be more vulnerable in certain ways such as having poorer mental health. There are lots of ways to achieve this, e.g. by working directly with people as I have done in health and social care, to lobbying government to make changes to models of support, as I have done in parliament.

    • Photo: Jayne Roberts

      Jayne Roberts answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      I’m not sure I have any one special thing that I want to achieve. The aim of my job is protect the environment from our use of everyday products such as shampoo, soap etc and I think that is really important if we want to keep our planet safe for future generations.

    • Photo: Michael Capeness

      Michael Capeness answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      I’m trying to understand how microbes, especially bacteria, can be used to recycle the waste metals from every day objects, and how we can use this for recovering valuable metals that we are running out and are usually lost into the environment.

    • Photo: Daniel Friedrich

      Daniel Friedrich answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      First, I just wanted to get an interesting and varied job (I get bored easily) which pays well. This has expanded over the years. Now, I would like to make a positive contribution (however small) on our fight against climate breakdown.

    • Photo: Rachel Edwards

      Rachel Edwards answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      That’s a really good, but hard, question. As others have said, science is a lot about making small changes, but even with small steps you can make progress! I would love to get the sensors that I’m designing out into industry, and see people using them to test the safety of things like power plants – that would feel like a great achievement. The other thing I would love to achieve is getting people more interested in science – encouraging them to ask questions and find out more about their world.

    • Photo: Li Xuan Sim

      Li Xuan Sim answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      Professionally, I hope to keep learning and contributing to healthcare/medical research to improve cancer treatments by working with teams with different expertise. The trend of cancer treatments is heading towards targeted and personalised therapy (each patient’s treatment is tailored to their own circumstances), and I hope to keep contributing to that, even if it’s just a tiny bit.

      Personally, I want to travel more and get a puppy!

    • Photo: Ben Dryer

      Ben Dryer answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      People get into science for all sorts of reasons – I want to be able to contribute to the success of scientific space missions which enhance our knowledge about the solar system and wider universe. But I’m also passionate about using my knowledge to train and enthuse the next generation of physicists and space scientists.

    • Photo: Tom Kitching

      Tom Kitching answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      I want to make sure that by the time I die, I feel like I have had a positive impact on the earth. To do this, I want to continue working in renewable energy to try and provide sustainable, clean energy for all, so that we can continue to live on this planet.

    • Photo: David McGonigle

      David McGonigle answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      Wow, Pippa and flo: that’s a really good question – but a hard one to answer… I suppose my idea of what is ‘achievable’ in science has changed over the years. In most fields of science, we measure achievement by, for example, how many papers you publish, how much money you make in grants, how many questions you answer on ‘I’m a scientist’…(!)

      But everyone that you talk to on these chats has already achieved a lot: they’ve either received a PhD (a ‘doctorate’) or are currently studying for one. It’s a lot of work, and it involves sacrifices, but folks believe that these will pay off: sadly often not in terms of lots of money, but because it allows us to do our best to make small changes to the world, and hopefully leave it in a better place than when we started. I can’t think of a better achievement to aim for…

    • Photo: Erin Pallott

      Erin Pallott answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      I want to help with the efforts of many scientists to make science open and understandable to all! My research is about parasites and mucus, so I want to make sure I help people understand how important these topics are to research for everyone’s health.

    • Photo: Fergus McKiddie

      Fergus McKiddie answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      I want to improve health outcomes for patients and deliver better diagnosis and introduce new molecular radiotherapy treatments. I also want to encourage the next generation of staff who will drive innovation and the clinical service in the future.

    • Photo: Philippa Harding

      Philippa Harding answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      I work on trying to understand what causes blindness. I want to give hope to the patients who are blind, or may go blind in the future, that even if we don’t know how to stop it today, someday soon we might be able to help them see again.

    • Photo: Stephanie Foster

      Stephanie Foster answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      I’d like the work that I do to make a difference to the lives of cancer patients by helping to find better and safer cancer treatments and eventually perhaps we’ll defeat cancer.

    • Photo: Adam Washington

      Adam Washington answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      I’m at the point in my career where my true desire is to help other scientists achieve what THEY want to achieve. I’ve met so many other scientists working on problems that I didn’t even realize existed. Each of them has had so much drive to make the world better in their own way. I would HATE to be asked to choose only one of their projects to succeed. But, if I can create tools that help those scientists along, then perhaps they can achieve ALL of it.

    • Photo: Hannah Fawcett

      Hannah Fawcett answered on 17 Jan 2024:


      I would like to improve mental health and wellbeing support for people undertaking jury difficult on difficult trials. Despite some jurors developing post traumatic stress disorder due to the graphic and upsetting images and testimony presented in some court cases, they don’t get any free mental health support.

      I would like to create a system where jurors get the recognition and psychological support they deserve for fulfilling this difficult yet important duty.

    • Photo: Penny Timpert

      Penny Timpert answered on 18 Jan 2024:


      This is a great question and so hard to answer. Like quite a few of the other scientists here, I work in medicine. My goal is to try to make sure as many people as possible around the world get the chance to find out what is wrong with them and to get better.

      I might not be able to prevent diseases but I try to make it easier to catch them as early as possible to give people the best chance of recovering. One of the ways of doing this is through information & education – explaining to people what to look out for, what is normal (and what isn’t) so they know when they should talk to a doctor or nurse or pharmacist about it.

    • Photo: removed scientist

      removed scientist answered on 18 Jan 2024:


      For me it is hoping that my research make a difference, no matter how small. It is also helping the next generation of researchers to gather the skills they need to make a difference through my teaching.

    • Photo: David Bremner

      David Bremner answered on 18 Jan 2024:


      A great philosopher (Master Yoda from Star Wars) said:
      “Pass on what you have learned”, The knowledge and wisdom we get going through life is a gift to pass along—not to keep to ourselves.
      If i can pass on things that i have learned to others or engage or inspire even one person through what i do then i will have done what i hoped to.

    • Photo: Lisa Hursell

      Lisa Hursell answered on 18 Jan 2024:


      I want to contribute to building a safer London and to making sure we make the best use of the resources available to others.

    • Photo: Esra Hassan

      Esra Hassan answered on 18 Jan 2024:


      As a researcher in dementia, i hope to contribute new knowledge to the dementia field that can be used to adapt policy. Personal achievements – I have a dream to set up my own humanitarian initiative.

    • Photo: Emma Weir

      Emma Weir answered on 23 Jan 2024:


      I want to add some knowledge to what we know about disorders like schizophrenia. Mental health and developmental conditions have huge impacts on people’s lives and their families and friends, and the treatment available isn’t great. The more we understand what changes in the brain, the more specific/personalised we can be with treatment.

    • Photo: Sharon Madzorera

      Sharon Madzorera answered on 24 Jan 2024:


      I want to achieve contentment. It is a difficult thing to achieve nowadays. Always so much more to do and so much more to have. I just want to be content and with what I have, where I am and who I am.

    • Photo: Kirsty Ross

      Kirsty Ross answered on 31 Jan 2024:


      Cheesy answer is that I want to leave the world in a better state than I found it in. There is plenty of work to do!

    • Photo: Clara Ferreira

      Clara Ferreira answered on 15 Feb 2024:


      Gosh, this is a great question!
      I want to make people happy with the solutions that I can provide for them.
      At the same time, I also want to be happy and live a good life – the fact that I have bipolar disorder and ADHD does not help. When I was diagnosed, I was recommended to have therapy, which I signed up for – I knew that there were things that I needed to work on, but I never thought there would be that many.
      After years of therapy, I can honestly say that what I want to achieve is to have a bungalow in the middle of a forest and ride a bike to work every day to get to work (a lab or a hospital), where I can get a nice schedule and go back home and read my books while being surrounded by the kids (who I do not have at the moment!). While being focused on the moment!

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