A Day in the Life of… Prof Liam Grover

10 March 2020

An initiative at the NIHR SRMRC, based at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham, is to give people an insight in to what different members of the team do on a day-to-day basis. It is our hope that with this people can feel that bit closer to the research process and understand how so many different people fit in to make a big, successful research programme! Today’s person is Prof Liam Grover.

4.00 AM: I get up and start my day with freshly brewed coffee. I take my daughter to swimming practice which starts around 5 AM. She’s REALLY good.

5.00 AM: After arriving back home I immediately start my work for the day. Usually I review grants for organisations such as NIHR. I do this very thoroughly and like to read all the applications in great depth to decide which should be awarded funding.

7.00 AM: Before I leave for work, I put something in the slow cooker for dinner that night; preparation is key when you’re extremely busy!

8.00 AM: When I start work in the mornings I like to spend a few hours catching up on emails. This helps me to manage my workload for the busy day of reviews and meetings.

10:00 AM: I have a mid-morning open door policy and encourage students and staff to drop in to talk about science, projects, or for a general supervision catch up.

11.00 AM: At this time I might have something like an Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) visit. Before these I take my time and read up about all the necessary people and policies.

12.00 PM: Around midday I have a departmental meeting with senior management. Here we discuss things like staffing issues, the delivery of the chemical engineering course to students and the direction of the three main research areas; Healthcare Technologies, Energy and Formulation Engineering.

1.00 PM: In the afternoon I meet with research clinicians about some clinical trials I’m involved with. It’s important to touch base with these to help flag any issues and monitor progression.

3.00 PM: Later in the afternoon I go back to reading grant applications. Right now I’m looking at some Invention for Innovation (i4i) applications. The aim of the i4i programme is to de-risk early stage projects that have a strong potential for commercialisation and acceptance for use in the NHS.

6.00 PM: I cycle back home for the evening (I really like to cycle, especially at weekends), I then take my son to his swimming practice and the day comes full circle when I take whatever it was in the slow cooker in the morning back out again!

7.30PM: After dinner, my family and I wind down for the evening by watching a film – Star Wars is a family favourite.

11 PM: Finally, after a very long day I get to bed! Before it all starts over!