Christina Lee about her lic and the pros of a PhD student network


Hi Christina, and congratulations on achieving your licentiate! How does it feel to reach this milestone?

Thank you!

It feels a bit surreal – it was something that seemed so far away when I started and has snuck up on me. At the same time, it’s nice to reflect back and see how much more I know now, compared to when I started on the PhD journey.

What is your field of research and why did you choose it?

Not sure if I chose my field, or if the field chose me!

I did my undergraduate in Environmental Geology and fell in love with rocks. However, life pulled me away and I ended up doing my Masters in Environmental Science at Gothenburg University with the thought to work with sustainability management. But when an opportunity came up to do my Master thesis on the environmental performance of a quarry, I couldn’t ignore it and reached out to Chalmers to help find a supervisor so I could take it on.

I’m glad I did, as it led me to my PhD where I can combine my love of rocks with sustainability management – getting to have my cake and eat it in a sense. Through this journey, I realised I really enjoy interdisciplinary research as well, even if it is very challenging sometimes, so I am very happy to have ended up in a topic where I can work with that too.

What are the main results of your dissertation, and how can they be used?

The results so far highlight that environmental impacts from quarries are varied and what is seen as significant can depend on your background. This means it is important to take a holistic approach to managing the environmental impact in quarries, and multiple approaches should be used in combination. However, tools can be used that can help ease that process and identify areas for improvement, like reducing transport distances and improving machine utilization. The perspective is always important though, and looking at absolute and relative impact is essential if you want to achieve absolute improvements!

How will you continue to work towards your doctoral dissertation?

Moving forward, I will be trying to validate the theories developed in the licentiate, namely whether these tools do lead to improvements in environmental performance and if they save resources (like time!) in the process.

What has been most exciting so far?

I’ve really enjoyed working with the companies that we have been collaborating with during our project – they are all so knowledgeable and I’ve learnt so much!

You are a member of Swedish Mining Innovation’s PhD student network, what do you see as the benefits of being part of the network?

I work with a very specific section within mining (quarries) and so it has been great to get a better understanding of the mining sector at large and think a bit about how applicable the tools we are working with would be for other sectors through events held by Swedish Mining Innovation PhD Network. For that, the network has been great to introduce me to students and industry experts alike. Plus, it’s a very welcoming group so always nice to meet up and hear how others are getting on.

Connect with Christina Lee on Linkedin

Read more about the PhD Student Network


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