Interdisciplinary Discussion Groups


The IDG allow students in fields which have often little contact to come together in an informal setting and discuss research, both within and without their own subject, from a variety of disciplinary viewpoints – a rare and valuable opportunity.


Academics, artists, authors, scientists, and experts from all fields are invited to spark up the discussion; in the past, we have welcomed Lord John Krebs, Lord Robert Winston, Edwina Currie, Philip Pullman, and Alice Smith – and more is yet to come.


Coffee, tea, and a free sandwich lunch are offered by the college, with both meat and vegetarian options. Please do not hesitate to get in touch for any other dietary requirement.


To ensure a cosy and lively discussion, places are limited to 20 students. To reserve a spot, click on the event’s title and add any dietary preferences in the comment box.


For questions, suggestions and further information, contact Valeria at


Michaelmas Term 2017 – Programme:


Week 2 – Friday 20 October, 12:45-2pm, Seminar Room 5
Philippe Boisseau, “Truths and Lies about the Energy Revolution”

M. Philippe Boisseau is a former member of the Executive Committee, President of Marketing & Services and President of New Energies at Total Fluides SAS. He served in several French government ministries, then joined Total in 1995. Since 2007, he has been president of Total Gas & Power with the role to develop the natural gas chain and alternative energies. He has been a member of Total’s Management Committee until 2016.
Click on the talk’s title to book your place.


Week 4 – Wednesday 1 November – 12:45-2pm, Seminar Room 3
Prof. Richard Allan, “Was there a pause in global warming?”
Richard Allan is Professor in Climate Science at the University of Reading and Joint Head of the Department of Meteorology. His roles and responsibilites include Principal Investigator for climate at the National Centre for Atmospheric Science, team member of the NASA Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant Energy System Science Team, and contributor to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
Click on the talk’s title to book your place.


Week 5 – Friday 10 November, 12:45-2pm, Seminar Room 3
Prof. Paul Craig, “Brexit, Politics and Law”

Paul Craig is Professor of English Law at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of St John’s College. He specializes in Constitutional Law, Administrative Law, EU Law and Comparative Public Law, and has published extensively in all areas. He is also the author of a number of legal textbooks, the most well-known of which (EU Law: Text, Cases and Materials, OUP) reached its 6th edition in 2015. He is currently engaged in a project which brings all his research subjects together, writing an interdisciplinary monograph on European Public Law.
Click on the talk’s title to book your place.


Week 6 – Wednesday 15 November , 12:45-2pm, Seminar Room 3
Prof. Carolyne Larrington, “Medievalism, Neomedievalism and Game of Thrones”

Carolyne Larrington is Professor of Medieval European Literature in the Faculty of English and Official Fellow at St John’s College. She published widely on Arthurian Literature, Norse mythology, and English folklore and recently took part in BBC Radio 4’s programme In Our Time. In 2015 she published Winter is Coming: the Medieval World of Game of Thrones, exploring the historical inspiration behind this fantasy phenomenon. A second book on Game of Thrones will appear when the TV series ends.
Click on the talk’s title to book your place.



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