DRA 2020
Doctoral Researcher Awards in 2020, scroll down to see 2020's prize winners.
Dedicated to the memory of loved ones we miss

It is with grief that these lines are being written.

2020 was a very different year than everyone had anticipated. There was a real enemy out there. The global pandemic had a massive impact on our lives. Many loved ones passed in this global war against Covid19.

As the DRA organisers (ABTA, SNAS, PARSUK and SRUK), it is with a heavy heart that we express our sincerest Condolences to all …

This year, as a species on the planet, we had numerous setbacks in all aspects of human activity (social life, business, education etc). However, there was promising news too. Despite the retreats in nearly on all fronts of the battle against this new enemy, there were also the fierce soldiers and servants of humanity, the courageous final line of defence, the mighty NHS who held the line against this terrible virus. But this was not all. Others resisted Covid's Terminators. These unknown soldiers were those who rose to the challenge of Covid in their own ways by helping the creation of the mightiest weapon of all, "the KNOWLEDGE". Along with the rest of the Grand Army of Science (i.e., the academics worldwide), the DRA battalion too served proudly in this strategically important mission, doing their part by promoting scientific excellence among the freshly recruited troops (the new PhD candidates).

In this battle of worlds, we, the DRA, saw the ugly face of the enemy and decided that we will not give in to this creature, not until the last neuron in our brain stops firing! Therefore, despite the general lockdowns and physical restrictions that the enemy forced us into, the DRA battalion carried on with their noble duty and accomplished their key mission in this war by successfully initiating Operation DRA 2020. Then, by outstanding efforts of its scientific squadrons (to whom we are indebted), the DRA 2020 competition was concluded after awarding the best soldiers in the virtual DRA 2020 Award Ceremony on September 12, 2020. The campaign was a big success. The awarded soldiers of KNOWLEDGE impressed the combatant and non-combatant troops (the audience) with their intellectual talents presenting their cutting edge research.

There were honourable officers present on the victory day. Field Colonel (Prof) Colm Connaughton was representing the Warwick corps, gave valuable tactical advice to the comrades on the future campaigns emphasising the importance of a balanced approach in pursuing theory/plan and action whether being in the field (Industry) or behind the lines (Academia). After this, Lieutenant Nastaran Ranjbar of the SNAS reinforcement regiment lifted the troops' morale by assuring the constant support of SNAS reserve forces that will tremendously help the troops in their professional career.

In short, the DRA battalion gave a clear message to the enemy:

"United we are as the Ray knights of KNOWLEDGE

No Terminator virus will dare

The clone army of the Covid (Empire) will fail

And the Human (Republic) will prevail! "

If you are reading this, you are the Resistance.

Natural and Life Sciences

1- Januka Athukoralage – University of St Andrews

2- You Li – University of Edinburgh

3- Szymon Juszkiewicz – University of Cambridge

Management and Social Sciences

1- Peter Lawrence - University of Reading

2- Nicolai Schulz - London School of Economics

3- Samira Garcia Freites – University of Manchester

Engineering Sciences

1- Betul Aldemir Dikici – University of Sheffield

2- Junfei Qiu – University of York

3- Max Carey - University of Southampton

Honourable Mentions
Natural and Life Sciences

Can Aztekin*- University of Cambridge

Nick Thomasban*- University of York

Elisabeth C Kugler – University Of Sheffield

Celia Alda-Catalinas – University Of Cambridge

Anastasiia Kadochnikova – University Of Sheffield

Heather Wilson – University of Exeter

Jocelyne Ishak – University of Kent

AlfredFillol Salom – University of Glasgow

Ying Gue – University of Aberdeen

Management and Social Sciences

Ziwen Sun*- University of Edinburgh

Marmon Brooks*- University of Edinburgh

Xiangming Tao - Royal Holloway, University of London

Catherine Talbot - University of Exeter

Immaculate Motsi Omoijiade - University of Warwick

Usame Yakutcan - University of Hertfordshire

Busra Nisa Sarac - University of Portsmouth

Dilek Celik - Birkbeck College London

Vicky Armstrong - University of Dundee

Valentina Bartali - University of Warwick

Blandine French - University of Nottingham

Engineering Sciences

Fiona Walport* - Imperial College London

Chukwuma Ogbonnaya* - University of Manchester

Zekun Liu - The university of Manchester

Emmanuel Momoh - University of Aberdeen United Kingdom

Thomas Robshaw - University of Sheffield

Mohamed Mohamed - University of Manchester

Lewis Blackburn - University of Sheffield

Peiyu Chen - University of Oxford

Matthew Watson - The University of Sheffield

Arsalan Marghoub - University College London

Natalie Lamb - University of Sheffield

Qasim Zia - The University of Manchester

Timothy Harrell - University of Southampton

Yu Wu - University College London

Sadik Omairey - University of Aberdeen

Ke Sun - University of Sheffield

* Who were the finalists.