Oxfords Vice-Chancellor, Professor Irene Tracey, speaking to Dr Chris Thorogood
Professor Irene Tracey speaking to Dr Chris Thorogood in Oxford's Botanic Garden

Fire and Wire

The Vice-Chancellor’s new series highlights University communities and brings interesting Oxford stories to you.

In her Admission speech Professor Tracey said:

'The Hebbian principle in neuroscience describes beneficial neuronal behaviour in the brain: if you fire together, you wire together. My goal is to fire and wire this great University more closely with our city, this nation and the globe, working generously with the other great British universities with whom we share our higher education ecosystem.'

Building on her goal to ‘fire and wire’ the University, this series explores Oxford’s people and stories.

Episode 6: Bridging the subject divide

June 2024

On the latest Fire and Wire, the Vice-Chancellor and her guests discuss a new cross-curricular teaching and learning experience for undergraduates at Oxford. Launched last term, The Vice-Chancellor’s Colloquium − Climate brought together 200 undergraduates and Oxford’s world-leading academics from across the Humanities, Social Sciences and STEM subjects to tackle the global climate crisis. Programme lead, Bill Finnegan, joins Pablo Mukherjee, Professor of Anglophone World-Literature, and first-year students, Michał Pietrzak and Erin Adlard, to discuss the initiative from their personal perspectives. 

Download the full transcript of bridging the subject divide (Word doc) here.

Related link: Vice-Chancellor's innovative cross-curricular programme celebrated

Episode 5: Oxford women making a global impact

March 2024

This International Women's Day (8 March), Professor Irene Tracey sat down with women from across the University who are making a global impact with their work. Professor Kokila Lakhoo, Dr Isang Awah and Professor Katrina Charles joined the Vice-Chancellor to discuss the challenges of working in an international space and the difficulties impacting the retention of women in academia.

Download the full transcript of the conversation on women making a global impact (Word doc) here.

Episode 4: Innovation and spinouts

December 2023

Mairi Gibbs, Chief Operating Officer at Oxford University Innovation and Lilly Bussmann, Principal at Oxford Science Enterprises, join Professor Irene Tracey for the latest podcast in this series to discuss innovation at Oxford.

Download the full transcript of the conversation on Innovation and spinouts (Word doc) here. 

Episode 3: Fire and Wire in the Garden

September 2023

Irene speaks to Dr Chris Thorogood, the Head of Science at Oxford Botanic Garden, about the past, present and future of this extraordinary institution.

Listen to just the audio of the interview here.

Episode 2: Wellbeing in the workplace

July 2023

Professor Jan-Emmanuel De Neve, Director of Oxford's Wellbeing Research Centre, speaks to Irene about why wellbeing matters in the workplace. He also discusses some of the latest research findings coming out of the Wellbeing Research Centre.

Episode 1: Women in STEM

April 2023

In the first episode, Irene speaks to Misha Patel, DPhil student in the Department of Engineering Science, and Professor Sonia Antoranz Contera from the Department of Physics. They touch on their pathways into science as women, the importance of networks and what direction their work will take next.

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