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Big Research Pitch

Practical solutions to real world problems

In October the University of Canberra's best and brightest early career researchers competed for $12,000 in research funding in the 2020 Big Research Pitch competition.

Over two weeks thousands of people from around the world voted for their favourite research pitch from the 17 participants. Since airing the Facebook Live final has reached over 2,800 views.

The 2020 funding recipients and finalists

Congratulations to all the funding recipients and finalists of the 2020 Big Research Pitch. We are so proud of you and the wonderful research you are doing at UC. Funding recipients will now share in $12,000 of research funding as awarded by the judging panel.

Shyam Barr

Preparing our young people for uncertain times

Shyam Barr is an Assistant Professor of Learning Sciences (Design and Pedagogy) at the University of Canberra. His research program explores educational leaders' and teachers' decision making processes and behaviours related to teaching about self regulated learning. Drawing on 10 years of experience as a leader and classroom teacher in local and international schools, he is particularly interested in the pragmatic effects of research. As such, he now works in close partnership with primary and secondary schools to support the promotion of self-regulated learning.

Watch Shyam's research pitch video

Irfan Khan

Fighting the Infodemic in the age of COVID 19

Irfan Khan is an Assistant Professor at the Canberra Business School. Irfan's research interest centres around how social media technologies can be used as means for social support and benefit health consumers and healthcare organisations. His interest in social media technologies extends to his recent research endeavours concerning the strategies to fight health misinformation on social media platforms. Irfan teaches marketing at both Undergraduate and Postgraduate levels. His teaching specialisation is on digital marketing and management information systems.

Watch Irfan's research pitch video

Kristy Martin

Brain training: A caffeine alternative?

Kristy is an Assistant Professor in anatomy and physiology and a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Canberra Research Institute for Sport and Exercise. Kristy's research focuses on mental fatigue, a concept familiar to many. Kristy's work extends the impact of mental fatigue on cognitive and physical performance, individual characteristics and behaviours which may afford someone greater tolerance to mental fatigue, as well as the physiological mechanisms underpinning impaired performance with mental fatigue. Kristy’s current research projects span professional sport, clinical, and military applications.

Watch Kristy's research pitch video

Maryam Ghahramani

Getting back in the game

Maryam Ghahramani received her BSc degree in electrical engineering at Shiraz University, Iran. She did her PhD in the field of "Biometric Gait, Motion, and Risk of Fall Analysis in Older People" at University of Wollongong, Australia. Recently she has joined University of Canberra as a lecturer in IT and Systems at the Faculty of Science and Technology. Her research interest is in the field of human motion analysis using machine learning for rehabilitation purposes. Applying pattern recognition methods to human motion and comparing the patterns in different cohorts to find meaningful differences is her passion.

Watch Maryam's research pitch video

Joe Northey

Clearing the brain fog of cancer and its treatment

Joe is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Health, whose research focuses on understanding the benefits of physical activity on brain health in cancer populations. Like many, he has seen friends and family not only carry the burden of a cancer diagnosis but struggle with managing the unseen side-effects like cognitive decline. Through this research, he aims to improve the support options for patients by engaging in physical activity, to help clear the brain fog of cancer and its treatments.

Watch Joe's research pitch video

Watch the finale

The five finalists answer questions from the panel of judges about their research pitch as they compete for $12,000 in research funding.

2020's Big Research Pitch participants

In the 90 second videos below all the Big Researc Pitch participants describe their research and its impact.

Shyam Barr

Preparing our young people for uncertain times

Doris Bozin

Breaking down silos: An interdisciplinary approach to legal education

Mehves Cetinkaya Sendas

Reach business success with design

Celeste Coltman

Protecting women in combat: Female specific body armour

Maryam Ghahramani

Getting back in the game

Hamed Golizadeh

Contributing factors to the mental health issues among Australian construction workers

Irfan Khan

Fighting the infodemic in the age of COVID-19

Christina Lommatsch

Extending reality to improve spatial reasoning

Kristy Martin

Brain training: A caffeine alternative?

Ro McFarlane

Our food, our community, our stories: Our future

Joe Northey

Clearing the brain fog of cancer and its treatment

Catherine Ordway

Great people are winners: Sport integrity at the local level

Ibrahim Radwan

Toward the equilibrium point between privacy and effective intelligent surveillance systems

John Ting

The contribution of Chinese carpenters in Australia

Barbara Voss

Be yourself at work!

Alison Wain

Infra-red fingerprints for heritage

Abel Zhou

The architecture of animal neural networks for signal detection and noise reduction in biomedical x-ray imaging


The 2020 Big Research Pitch was only possible because of the following talented and dedicated people.

We want to acknowledge the training provided by Canberra Innovation Network, Talkforce Media, and the UC Media team, along with UC’s own pitch coaches, Dr Bernie Bissett and Dr Peter Copeman. And thank you to Crux Media for producing the pitch videos.

We thank the judging panel for their expertise and insights - Jason Perelson (Creative Director, creativeXpeople at Synergy Group Australia), Danielle Harmer (General Manager, All Homes), and Petr Adamek (Chief Executive Officer, Canberra Innovation Network).

We would also like to thank the UC Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Innovation, Professor Leigh Sullivan, for providing financial and event support.

The Facebook Live event was a collaboration between UC Researcher Development and UC Media and Communications teams.

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