Pharmacy runner up in Three Minute Thesis competition

29 September 2011

Ben Basger, Three Minute Thesis runner up
Ben Basger, Three Minute Thesis runner up

Ben Basger, postgraduate research student at the Faculty of Pharmacy, was the runner up in the University's Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition, held earlier this month.

Explaining your research thesis can be challenging at the best of times, so imagine having to do it in just 180 seconds to an audience who know nothing about your field.

Competitors in 3MT are challenged to give a three-minute rundown of their research projects. University of Sydney contestants covered topics as diverse as shark attacks, software infrastructure and meditation.

Ben, drew on his experiences as a pharmacist in Bondi to develop a better understanding of how we prescribe drugs to older people.

"The Australian elderly, like the elderly elsewhere, suffer disproportionately from drug morbidity due to many factors. There have been many workers who have attempted to develop either lists of potentially inappropriate drugs in the elderly, or other types of quality prescribing indicators.

"This work began in the USA in 1991, and despite the development and presence of many such lists or indicators since then, two aspects stand out: (1) there is very little proof that all these efforts have been effective; and (2) no such lists or indicators have been developed for Australians using Australian data.

"My PhD aims to develop these lists or indicators and test them."

"The 3MT competition was a great experience for me as it took me out of comfort zone, which is an essential part of undertaking any PhD. It was also challenging to condense and funnel a tremendous amount of information and research knowledge into a three minute bite sized explanation."

Ben was a close runner up in the competition and won a prize of $500.

Founded in 2008, 3MT is designed to help early career researchers better communicate their research to the general public, regardless of their location and discipline.

The 'less is more' approach also helps contestants to crystallise their thoughts on their research projects.

Contact: Kate Sanday

Phone: 02 9351 2311

Email: 112206340702274019372b3713300526000d0a37311e0a544a58335320640837