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Thought Leadership

Neanderthals: how a carnivore diet may have led to their demise

Professor Paul Pettitt from the Department of Archaeology investigates how understanding our ancestors' diets can reveal crucial information about their varying degrees of evolutionary success.
Cave paintings made by Homo sapiens

Ukraine war: lessons from the Blitz suggest Russia’s targeting of cities could backfire

Professor Tim Luckhurst, Principal of South College, discusses how lessons from the Blitz suggest that Russia's targeting of cities in Ukraine may backfire.
Image showing damage to buildings in the city of Odessa, Ukraine

What long-term economic stagnation means for climate change

Current economic problems are bad for green investment, but according to Dr Jack Copley, Assistant Professor in International Political Economy in our School of Government and International Affairs, the economic obstacles to effective decarbonisation are more deeply entrenched.
A solar panel array in the sunshine

Four ways to support a friend or loved one with long COVID

An estimated 2.3 million people in the UK are currently living with long COVID. The condition is most commonly reported by people aged 35-69, but it can affect people of any age. And many young people will also face the need to support friends or relatives. Dr Ana Leite from our Department of Psychology gives us a few tips on how to support a loved one.
A man and a woman with their arms around each other

‘Something that speaks to you in the quiet of the night’: Horror writing with Naomi Booth

This Halloween, Dr Naomi Booth, Associate Professor in the Department of English Studies and award-winning fiction writer tells us about horror writing and the Boggart, a forgotten folklore monster.
Farmhouse on open moorland

The Underworld and Halloween

George Alexander Gazis is Assistant Professor in Greek Literature in the Department of Classics and Ancient History. He is interested in the function of mortality and the afterlife in the Homeric Epics and early Lyric. On Halloween we explore how these ancient understandings resonate with the festivities which now take place on 31st October.
Odysseus and the Underworld

Exploring the Victorian Occult

As Halloween approaches, we talk to Dr Efram Sera-Shriar, Associate Director of Research for the Centre for Nineteenth-Century Studies, International, at Durham. His research explores the study of the occult and its intersection with the sciences. He is the lead organiser for Beyond the Veil: Cross-Cultural & Interdisciplinary Studies of Horror, Gothic, and the Occult in the Nineteenth Century, taking place on Halloween, 31 October.
Apparition during palm reading from 1869

Three reasons why strong perfumes give you a headache

Humans can smell over 1 trillion odours. But no two people will react in quite the same way to the same smell. Professor Amanda Ellison from our Department of Psychology explains why.
A woman holding her head with a painful expression her face

Celebrating the life of a former lecturer with an award-winning choir

On Monday 24 October, the Soweto Gospel Choir will be performing at Durham Cathedral in memory of our former lecturer Ruth First. Emeritus Professor Mike Thompson from our School of Modern Languages and Cultures has been reflecting on her life and the importance of her work.
An image of the Soweto Gospel Choir on the right and Ruth First on the left

Tracking harp seals in Canada

Dr James Grecian was part of the final episode of Frozen Planet II where he talks about the migration of harp seals.
Dr James Grecian in a helicopter and on the right an image of a seal.

Where have we gone wrong in our battle against teacher shortages?

Beng Huat See from our Evidence Centre for Education looks at the chronic issue of teachers shortages and how to fix it.
Teacher shortages

Somalia: Puntland state port is getting a revamp - this is key to its future

Professor Jutta Bakonyi, in our School of Government and International Affairs, and Dr May Darwich, of the University of Birmingham, say the modernisation of the port is critical for Puntland to ensure it keeps a significant position within the fragmented political landscape of Somalia.
Aerial view of a cargo ship full of shipping containers