• Question: how many places have you traveled to?

    Asked by item370ham to Mark, Liam, Laura, Kasia on 9 Nov 2019.
    • Photo: Laura Sinclair

      Laura Sinclair answered on 9 Nov 2019:


      Hey! My count is 42 countries. I have been very lucky and got to live in Finland, Australia, Ireland and Japan for work. Science work is very diverse and we are needed globally, so there are a lot of opportunities to work overseas. Also, scientists often collaborate on projects and ideas so there is scope to travel to different places all over the world for your job. A lot of my friends are scientists and now work overseas so I get to visit them on holiday! Which is a nice bonus.

    • Photo: Mark Johnson

      Mark Johnson answered on 10 Nov 2019:


      Hi there! I’ve been to about 10 countries in total. These days science is very international, and it gives you some fantastic opportunities to travel and work in other countries. For the last few years I’ve been lucky enough to work at CERN, a European lab on the French-Swiss border. I really enjoy working there and getting to know people from all over the world – places like Brazil, Canada and Finland!

    • Photo: Liam Gaffney

      Liam Gaffney answered on 11 Nov 2019: last edited 11 Nov 2019 10:49 am


      Too many to count. I hadn’t travelled outside of the UK until I was around 15. When I was studying for my PhD I got the chance to travel all over Europe for experiments, conferences and meetings. I’ve since been to North America multiple times and Japan on work trips. That’s one of the big advantages of collaborating with scientists all over the world!

      If you ever play the board game “Ticket to Ride” (you should, it’s fun), then the person who has been to the most countries plays first. When I play with my family, I am always first so we don’t even count anymore!

    • Photo: Kasia Clarke

      Kasia Clarke answered on 12 Nov 2019: last edited 12 Nov 2019 11:21 am


      Hi, In terms of places I’ve been to for work in the past year, I visited several amazing states in the US that I wouldn’t have got a chance to otherwise. We flew to into Salt Lake City and took the scenic route through Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Park which are beautiful if you ever get the chance to go, but the purpose of the journey was to get to Idaho National Laboratory which carries out nuclear research in what feels like a desert the middle of nowhere. We went to discuss our work with researchers there, but also got to talk to them about Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTG) which they helped design that use plutonium to provide heat and electricity for deep space missions (if you’ve seen the film ‘The Martian’, you might recognise the term RTG that he uses to keep warm).

      Driving further into the desert in Idaho, they even have their experimental reactor designs for a Nuclear-powered aircraft, which does seem like a crazy idea which is why the projects were cancelled.

      We flew from there to a Nuclear Materials conference in Seattle which is again, an amazing place to visit. This summer, I went to sunny Seville in Spain for a conference, and others in my research group have just come back from carrying out work at Chernobyl in Ukraine. So PhD research does give you plenty of opportunity to travel if that is something that interests you.

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