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Dr Sam Williamson

Biography

I am passionate about engineering supporting a positive social change, providing a more equal and just society. During a sabbatical year in Nepal during 2008-9, I realised first hand how energy was a key enabler to achieve this. Since then, I have been working on small-scale hydropower through my PhD study, a follow on EPSRC grant, and currently through an EPSRC DTP scholarship. From my experiences in remote and rural communities, I have learnt how innovative they are, able to understand, modify and repair technology with limited tool sets and potentially restricted understanding. I have forged links with research groups in the Global South, from Brazil, South Africa and Nepal, to co-design and co-produce high quality research outputs and educational materials. Prior to my time in academia, I worked in engineering consultancies for Airbus and other clients developing design methods, test plans and safety databases.

I grew up in Cornwall, spending my summers working for my parents in their dairy engineering company. I therefore enjoy spending time outside, especially ambling along beaches or walking up hills. I am very keen on living a minimum impact life, and so live in an energy efficient house which we developed with my family and two cats.