Two EUR PhD students battled their colleagues from the TU Delft in a Science Battle Thursday night at the Erasmus Pavilion. The students got the chance to defend their projects in a talk show-like setting.

The winner was decided through the amount of points a number of factors conceded, starting with a jury consisting of volunteers from the audience. The rest of the audience had their say too: a digital applause meter was used at the end of every talk to decide the amount of points the candidates would get for the second part.. The third component of the final ranking was an “unbiased” person chosen by the organization who could give additional points, but the university professor from TU Delft was very straightforward on where his loyalties lied: when asked why he gave points to a contestant he said he gave them to Eline because “she is from the TU.”

The evening started with Julia Cramer from the TU, who had it difficult with her complicated topic: quantum computers. The jury was still impressed with the way she managed to get her story across using metaphors, interesting stories and even turning the audience into a binary computer, and she ended second place.


Working at home

Nick van der Meulen from RSM had a topic that the audience went into doubting the relevance, but he actually turned it into a really interesting talk. Turns out there has been done a lot of research on the benefits (or downsides) of working at home, and Nick had a big part in it.

The two contestants after the break were Eline van der Kruk and Martijn Kool. Eline had a really appealing presentation on the science behind ice-skating (a Dutch national pride), and Martijn explained how his experiments on mouse brains led to better understanding of the human brain. The applause meter reached the highest score after his talk, and he won the battle despite the sabotage attempts of the TU professor.