Cabot Institute Annual Lecture 2018

29 January 2018, 6.00 PM - 29 January 2018, 7.30 PM

Great Hall, Wills Memorial Building, University of Bristol

This special event explored and celebrated the research, innovations and partnerships of the University of Bristol’s Cabot Institute.

The Cabot Institute is the University of Bristol’s first flagship cross-disciplinary research institute, conducting world-leading research on the challenges arising from how we live with, depend on and affect our planet.

Over 600 people joined us for our most prestigious event of the year! We showcased some of our most interesting and world-changing research from global developments in monitoring volcanoes to responsible innovation to zero power sensors. Speakers included Dr Juliet Biggs, Professor Richard Owen and Dr Bernard Stark. 

Dr Juliet Biggs – Watching the world’s volcanoes

Listen again to Juliet's talk [MP3, 18 MB]

800 million people around the world live on or next to a volcano - many of whom rely on warnings to keep them safe from eruptions. But how can we tell if a volcano might erupt? And with over 1,500 volcanoes on land, how can we monitor them all? Juliet Biggs introduces a ground-breaking initiative developed by a multi-institution team at the Centre for Observation and Modelling of Earthquakes, Volcanoes and Tectonics (COMET), which will transform the way we monitor and respond to volcanic risk around the world.

Professor Richard Owen – Responsible innovation

Listen again to Richard's talk [MP3, 18 MB]

Science and innovation have the power to create and transform futures in profound and uncertain ways, from artificial intelligence and the world of work to engineering our global climate. What kind of future do we want science and innovation to create? How can we engage meaningfully with those futures and shape them? How can we collectively take responsibility for those futures? And what does that mean for Universities and their role in society?

Dr Bernard Stark - From low-power to no power: electronics ‘unplugged’

Listen again to Bernard's talk [MP3, 14 MB]

What is ‘Alexa’ doing while you are on holiday? How much energy do sensors spend listening for rare events? Is the power consumption of today’s electronics low enough to implement an Internet of Things? And what does low power mean, anyway? Bernard Stark sheds light on why having 8.4 billion connected devices ‘in waiting’ poses a significant environmental challenge, and shows us how new technologies light the path to a nearly-no-power revolution, but also offer new features that we may not be accustomed to. Find out more at

Audio, photos and social media from the event

View the photos on Flickr

View the tweets from the evening

Listen again to the whole lecture [MP3, 54.5MB]


Juliet Biggs

Juliet Biggs will be talking about watching the world’s volcanoes

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