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Women in Science

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Video clip: Julia explains that research necessarily involves a degree of administration, but suspects that some of the 'box-ticking' now required has little value.

And is this when you say that you work all weekends to get the work done, is that research and administrative work, or is that mainly your research?

It's admin, teaching, keeping up with research because I have, well for theories quite a big research group, although experimentalists have much bigger ones, so it's helping them write papers, helping them writing proposals, it's writing reports, it's trying to keep up with all the things they're doing so I can input things properly. So there always seems to be a lot to do. And then tutorial teaching on top of that and this is quite a lot.

And what, which, in terms of the different aspects of your job which one do you like doing the most?

I like doing research although it's perhaps the hardest because I mean it's wonderful when it goes well, but sometimes it doesn't go well. I don't like not being able to keep up with students and post docs so I don't feel that I really know what they're doing. It's nice to have, it would be nice to have more time to do more hands-on stuff myself. I do like teaching, and in a way it's easier because you can do it well and get it done.

And administration, well I don't mind but, I don't mind if it's sensible administration so that you end up feeling that you've done something useful, or being on maybe a committee, a grants committee where the process seems sensible. So I don't mind doing that. I hate trying to jump through administrative hoops just to put a tick in a box for some administrators, and my…


…and that increasingly is what we're having to do.