On Thursday 26th July 2018 the second KESS 2 Awards, an annual event held for participants of the ESF funded project, was hosted at St Fagans National Museum of History in Cardiff. The evening consisted of a live competition of engaging presentations, each competing for a chance to win up to two awards; The Sustainability Award and Overall Presentation Winner. A third award was also given for entries to the Research Images Competition, with the winner being decided beforehand by a VIP judging panel.
There were 8 presentations in total, lasting three minutes each, which were judged on the night by the audience based on a criteria of delivery, clarity, engagement and evidence of collaboration. An additional criteria was judged separately by Dr Einir Young and Dr Gwenith Elias of The Sustainability Lab at Bangor University, based on how well each presentation addressed the ‘Well-being of Future Generations Act’ (2015).
Amy Williams-Schwartz, a Cardiff University PhD student in partnership with Eco-Explore, was the overall presentation winner, whilst Jennifer Langer, a PhD student also from Cardiff University and working in partnership with Orangebox, was awarded The Sustainability Award. Highly Commended in the Sustainability category were Alice Gilmour (Cardiff Metropolitan University with Puffin Produce Ltd) and Amy Williams-Schwartz, whilst Lorna Drake (Cardiff University with The Wildlife Trust) and Adrian Mironas (Aberystwyth University with Hywel Dda UHB) were highly commended for their overall presentations.
The event also saw the return of the KESS 2 Research Images competition following the theme ‘Transition’. Rhiannon Chalmers-Brown, PhD student from the University of South Wales working in partnership with Tata Steel, was awarded the prize for Best Research Image with her unique response to the competition in the form of an original oil painting. Highly commended were Jessica Knoop (Swansea University with The Pembrokeshire Beach Food Company) and Kasper Brandt (Swansea University with Milford Haven Port Authority). The image competition was judged externally by Lisa Matthews-Jones (Portfolio Manager, Arts Council of Wales), Alison Mitchell (Director of Development, Vitae), and Vince Jones (Whole Picture Productions).
As always, the event serves as a showcase for the ongoing innovative EU funded research projects currently taking place in Wales as part of the Welsh Government supported programme. Every KESS 2 project forges connections between business and academia and the event, which will continue to run annually, brought the opportunity for each of these groups to connect, discuss and celebrate their ongoing research projects.