Dr Duncan Thomas

Honorary Research Fellow (MIoIR)

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Duncan joined the 5 RAE research scored and teaching top-scoring 24 QAA Policy Research in Engineering, Science and Technology (PREST) research centre at the University of Manchester in 2002, now the Manchester Institute of Innovation Research within Manchester Business School. He has published in academic journals (e.g. Research Evaluation) and professional journals (e.g. Water & Wastewater Treatment, Utility Week), has led research projects as principal investigator, and has worked in interdisciplinary, international teams.

He has been funded by a variety of organisations, including: EU FP7 IDEAS Programme (ERC); Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC); Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC); EU FP6; European Commission (EC) JRC-IPTS; EC JRC-EuroFound; PRIME Network of Excellence; ESTO; Defra; Department of Health; Department of Trade and Industry (DTI); Dstl/MOD; Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO); British Council; Environment Agency (EA); NWDA; Ofwat; Tekes (Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation); and UK Water Industry Research (UKWIR).

His professional qualifications and experience includes:

  • MEnt (Tech) - 2006 - University of Salford (with Distinction).
  • PhD - 2002 - ESRC CASE Award with United Utilities; University of Manchester (supervisor Prof. Luke Georghiou).
  • MSc - 1998 - Technical Change and Industrial Strategy; PREST.
  • Research Engineer - 1994-97 - Thorn EMI's Central Research Laboratories.
  • BSc (Hons) ARCS - 1995 - Physics; Imperial College, London.

 From 2014 Duncan will be trying out a new form of teaching led by Prof. Dale Whittington by launching a MOOC (massive open online course) via Coursera on Water Supply and Sanitation Policy in Developing Countries.

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Duncan currently teaches on water supply and sanitation planning and policy in developing countries (BMAN72192) led by MBS colleague, Dale Whittington (a video summary of the course content is available, as are video highlights of a guest lecture by Tony Allan). For 2014, Dale and Duncan are offering a brand new version of this course via Coursera as a MOOC (massive open online course). This Water Supply and Sanitation in Developing Countries MOOC is free and open to everyone and further details are available here.

Separately Duncan has also given MBS Executive Education sessions on innovation for major UK water companies in 2009 and 2012. He has also previously designed and delivered an MSc course unit on Sustainable Policies for Science, Technology and Innovation - and has given guest lectures on technology assessment and evaluation from a sustainability perspective, as well as on qualitative research methods (interviews, case studies). Recently he has supervised Masters dissertations and currently supervises two full-time PhD researchers.

Duncan was formerly a contributing editor for the British Council’s monthly Science Insight bulletin, has undertaken curriculum innovation, has been involved with various committees and interest groups around the University of Manchester, and co-organised the MIoIR seminar series (during 2003-06). He enjoys music performance, recording and production, and photography and film-making (see One Day Films). 

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