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CRC student conference 2009

December 2, 2009 Leave a comment

I’m in Sydney at the moment, waiting for my excruciatingly slow mobile “broadband” so I can check my email and look up a few things for tomorrow’s panel discussion: ironically, one where I’ll be speaking about the National Broadband Network. Truth be told, I’d kill for something a bit faster than the 23kbps I’m getting right now…

Tuesday was a very full day, packed to the gills with training sessions: media skills, a commercialisation ‘boot camp’, intellectual property law and pitching/presentation training. Some of the workshops suffered a little from being trimmed-down versions of longer presentations, but I found all of them worth going to. I wish I’d had that kind of preparation before the Business Plan competition pitch, but it’s still useful for applying that 20:20 hindsight.

We wrapped up the day over at the Rose Hotel, where I found that assembling a bunch of random PhD students doesn’t necessarily make a very good pub trivia team (we don’t know enough pop lyrics…). Fortunately, we redeemed ourselves in the second half of the trivia night. Next time, we ought to shanghai someone who can answer the sport, film, TV and music questions 🙂

Despite getting up a little after 5am, I still only got a shade under three hours’ sleep after getting back to the hotel room. Not the best way to get ready for a full day of poster presentations…

Today’s poster sessions seemed fairly quiet, without many people stopping to talk about the project. That wasn’t entirely unexpected: location (hidden in the corner) and subject (a qualitative business study in a room filled with technology projects) left it on the fringe in more ways than one. So I was quite surprised to win an award for the most popular thesis, based on votes from the industry partners – not something I saw coming at all.

Feedback on the project has been excellent: particularly in terms of new areas to explore, helping to develop a stronger direction for the research, and highlighting groups that could benefit from the research outcomes. The project feels much more substantial than it did about twelve hours ago.

Right now, I need sleep… six hours over the last two nights is enough to function (barely), but it’s not going to get me through day 3. The panel discussion is on first thing tomorrow, so I’ll need to be awake for that one!