2016 PhD Candidate - Frank Long
Supervised by Arnab Majumdar, Holly Carte (Public Health England)
Prior to starting his PhD, Frank completed his MSc studies in Risk Analysis at King’s College London and currently works for Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service.
Why did you decide to do a PhD in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering?
I came across the PhD through a general search on the Internet and put in an inquiry. Arnab my supervisor then got back to me and after a few chats I was really excited by what he was looking to do and so I thought, yes, I fancy being a part of that.
Tell us about your PhD research
I am looking to understand human behaviour during Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) Incidents requiring mass decontamination. I am hoping to improve planning and training for such incidents by ensuring that the psychology of casualties involved is appropriately considered.
What impact do you hope you research will have/what do you hope your research will lead on to?
I work closely with Public Health England’s Emergency Response Department Science and Technology team who have done a large amount of previous research in this area to assist National Resilience who are responsible for providing emergency response assets for this type of incident. I therefore hope that partnering with PHE will see my research influence future National Resilience planning and resourcing around CBRN.
What is a typical week like for you?
I’m a father of two and work for the Fire and Rescue Service so I don’t have a typical week. Generally, it’s a mix of working from our Service Headquarters spilt up by responding to incidents, looking after the family and then finding time in between to move my PhD forward.
How have your skills developed, both professional and personal?
It’s been a huge learning curve but the skills I’ve learnt as part of my PhD are proving to already be invaluable in my professional work allowing me to bring the rigour associated with academia into my Fire and Rescue Service role. I have also been able to utilise the relationships built through my PhD with agencies such as Public Health England and National Resilience in my professional life, which has given me a number of opportunities.
What do you enjoy most about being a PhD in the Department?
I’ve enjoyed getting to work with such a variety of people from such a range of different research areas. I have also been really lucky to find myself in a team, which has been really supportive and made the PhD far more enjoyable as a result.