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Countercurrent: conversations with Professor Roger Kneebone

A podcast for people who like the unexpected. Join the surgeon and academic Professor Roger Kneebone in conversation with unorthodox people whose careers defy traditional boundaries and who swim against the tide. Technical support by Justin Margovan - with my thanks My personal website www.rogerkneebone.co.uk Many of the people in Countercurrent feature in my book Expert: Understanding the Path to Mastery (Penguin Viking, 2020) https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/313/313248/expert/9780241392058.html
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Countercurrent: conversations with Professor Roger Kneebone
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Now displaying: 2023
Dec 25, 2023

Gareth Mitchell lectures in science communication at Imperial College London. For many years he presented the weekly technology programme Digital Planet on the BBC World Service. He also presents occasionally on BBC Radio 4’s Inside Science. We explore parallels between Gareth’s work as a presenter and podcaster and my own experience as a clinician.

Dec 11, 2023

Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 7th Marquess of Salisbury, has had a long career as a Conservative politician. He represented South Dorset in the House of Commons from 1979-1987. He was a junior defence minister for two years before being appointed to the House of Lords as Lord Cranborne after the 1992 general election. In the 1990s he was Leader of the House of Lords, from which he retired in 2017. His home is Hatfield House in Hertfordshire.

This conversation was recorded in early November 2023, before David Cameron was appointed Foreign Secretary by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak. 

Nov 27, 2023

Andrew Grundon is an artist who draws, paints and sculpts. He designs and paints traditional pub signs, makes marionettes and is writing and illustrating a novel. In this podcast we discuss the remarkable range of skills which he has gained over many decades and explore how he continues to defy conventional categories and push the boundaries of his work.

In November 2023 Andrew became Maker of the Year in the 2023 Heritage Crafts Awards.

https://signaturesignsuk.com

Nov 13, 2023

Dr Jonathon Tomlinson has been a full-time GP in East London since 2001. He is fascinated by the challenges subtleties of the clinical consultation. He writes about patient clinical advocacy and the social determinants of health and has an MA in Human Values and Contemporary Global Ethics. In this conversation we discuss the nature of general practice, including ideas around kindness and shame.

Oct 30, 2023

Abigail Bainbridge is a book conservator and Director of Bainbridge Conservation. She teaches on many degree programmes, including at West Dean College, Camberwell College of Art and City & Guilds of London Art School.  She sits on the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Heritage Science Expert Working Group and is the editor of Conservation of Books, which was published in 2023.

https://www.bainbridgeconservation.com/aboutus

 

Oct 16, 2023

Allan Hamilton holds four professorships at the University of Arizona College of Medicine - in neurosurgery, radiation oncology, psychology and electrical engineering & computing. His book The Scalpel and the Soul, based on over two decades as a neurosurgeon, explores clinical practice from unconventional perspectives. He is an expert horse whisperer and senior medical consultant on the television show Grey’s Anatomy. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allan_Hamilton

Oct 2, 2023

Dr Ishminder Mangat is a junior doctor based in Bristol. She is fascinated by exploring how clinical medicine and the arts can enrich and enlighten one another. Her own podcasts explore a range of topics, including the power of narrative in breast cancer, death and dying, and motherhood anxiety. Ishminder is the lead organiser and creator of Bodies, medical humanities which was launched in Bristol in June 2023

Sep 18, 2023

Desiree Botana Machado is a skilled prosector, preparing dissections of human cadavers for teaching medical students and surgeons. We discuss how her work combines extraordinary levels of craftsmanship and skill with deep anatomical knowledge and the ability to engage with learners across a wide range of knowledge and experience. 

Sep 4, 2023

Dr James Eastaway trained as a doctor while developing his career as a leading Baroque oboeist and working in experimental theatre. As a musician he plays in some of the UK and Europe’s leading ensembles, while as a doctor he is a GP in a South London training practice. We discuss the excitements and challenges of keeping these multiple strands in play at the same time. 

Aug 21, 2023

Joz Norris is an award-winning writer, actor and comedian. We explore Joz’s approach to his work in the world of comedy, and discuss how his absurdist approach has opened new directions. We examine parallels between our professional lives and discuss the transitions we have both experienced in our careers.

https://www.joznorris.co.uk

Aug 7, 2023

The Hungarian musician Anna Detari studied the flute at the Liszt Institute in Budapest and developed a passion for performing contemporary compositions before her career was disrupted by Musician’s Focal Dystonia - a mysterious condition which she went on to research and which formed the basis of her doctorate. Although Anna has recovered her ability to perform, her interests in musicians’ wellbeing and the impact of neurodiversity on professional careers form the basis of her current work at the Royal College of Music

 

https://www.rcm.ac.uk/research/people/details/?id=96061

Jul 24, 2023

Miss Angeliki McAllister trained as a breast surgeon, initially focusing on procedures to remove cancers and refashion patients’ breasts. Now she is developing a non-operative clinical role, bringing together the many kinds of expertise which women experiencing breast cancer need. We discuss her ideas around widening her professional focus, comparing her career path with my own experience in surgery, general practice and academia.

Jul 14, 2023

Simon Friend retired from PwC in 2017 after 35 years with the company. His background in accountancy, auditing and business leadership has led to a range of other roles, including being Non-Executive Director at the Royal Academy of Arts. We discuss Simon's role as critical friend and explore how his experience in thinking about risk can inform an organisation’s decision-making. 

Jun 19, 2023

Maiko Tsutsumi studied furniture making and Japanese lacquer work as an apprentice in her native Japan in the 1990s. After moving to London and studying furniture design at the Royal College Art, she worked for a design studio in London. Having completed a PhD (entitled The Poetics of Everyday Objects) she took up a teaching role at Camberwell College of Arts. Now working independently, Maiko’s interests cross many boundaries.

https://www.maikotsutsumi.com 

Jun 5, 2023

Tim Boon is a historian of the public culture of science. In his long career at the Science Museum he has explored many aspects of public history relating to health. In this conversation he traces his career’s evolution and we discuss his current large-scale project The Congruence Engine, funded by the Arts & Humanities Research Council.

May 22, 2023

Callum Thorpe initially trained as a scientist, gaining a PhD in immunology from Imperial College London. He then trained as an opera singer and is now an internationally renowned soloist. In this conversation we explore the nature of performance in science and the performing arts. 

https://www.callumthorpe.com

May 8, 2023

AJ West’s career has been varied and at times controversial, and his interests are diverse. In addition to fifteen years as a television journalist and news presenter, he has participated in Big Brother and become a writer. His first novel The Spirit Engineer was published in 2021 and won the Historical Writers’ Association Debut Crown Award. 

https://ajwestauthor.com

Apr 24, 2023

Ann Martin-Davis is an award-winning pianist who performs as a soloist and chamber musician all over the world. In addition to her performing and recording career she is passionate about teaching. We explore parallels between our experiences of teaching, coaching and other dimensions of our professional careers.

https://www.annmartin-davis.com/bio 

Apr 10, 2023

Robert Peake is Senior Associate at Next Action Associates. He studied at UC Berkeley in California, where he gained a degree in English Literature and taught programming languages. His interests and talents cross many boundaries, and during the Covid pandemic he made a ukelele. 

https://www.next-action.co.uk/team/robert-peake/

Mar 27, 2023

Robert Kirby trained as an actor at Rose Bruford College. With support from The Prince’s Trust he established People People, a company which brings techniques from the theatre into other areas of professional practice. We discuss our experiences of changing career direction and discover unexpected parallels.

https://www.people-people.uk/the-who/

Mar 13, 2023

Dr Paul Haidet’s work crosses multiple boundaries. As Distinguished Professor in the Departments of Medicine, Public Health Sciences and Humanities at Penn State University, he is fascinated by crossing traditional disciplinary boundaries. His lifelong passion for jazz has a profound influence on his clinical practice. In this conversation we explore  unexpected parallels and similarities between our own professional experiences.

Feb 27, 2023

Dr Sam Guglani and I explore how his work as an oncologist is interwoven with his lifelong fascination with writing and the arts. Sam describes how he established Medicine Unboxed more than a decade ago, how it has developed in surprising directions and how it will take place again in May 2023

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/medicine-unboxed-matter-tickets-511287904887

Feb 13, 2023

Ana Silvera’s work defies orthodox categories, spanning folk, jazz, pop, classical and many other traditions. In addition to her recordings she works in ballet and theatre and  collaborates widely. She is also an interpreter of Ladino song.

anasilvera.com

Jan 30, 2023

Ash Ranpura’s career has moved between experimental neuroscience, internal medicine, clinical neurology and hospital redesign. In this conversation we compare our experiences of moving between fields and across interdisciplinary boundaries and explore how our experience of clinical practice has shaped our beliefs. 

Jan 16, 2023

As Principal Curator of Crustacea and Cnideria at the Natural History Museum, Miranda Lowe is responsible for the museum’s vast collection of marine invertebrates, dating back over two hundred years. In addition to her own research she is passionate about inspiring and mentoring young people and increasing diversity. She has also written about the museum’s collection of 182 glass sea creatures made by Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka in the late nineteenth century. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miranda_Lowe

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