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  • An 80,000 word PhD thesis takes 9 hours to present. Their time limit: 3 minutes!

    See the best researchers and presenters from each Faculty battle it out for the opportunity to represent UTS at the Asia-Pacific Grand Final.

    UTS research is daring…

    “What should we do if there were aliens coming to attack our planet? Should we prepare for the fight or send someone to negotiate for the peace? ” Yingyod Lapwong, Faculty of Science

    thought-provoking …

    “Do you ever feel like our politicians are just not listening to us? I know whenever I’m in that voting queue, I’m always thinking this doesn’t really matter. The same person’s going to be elected and they probably won’t listen to what I want” Eamon McGinn, UTS Business School

    innovative …

    “Our urine is like liquid gold, and I’m going to prove it to you” Frederico Volpin, Faculty of Engineering and IT

    socially responsible …

    “Imagine tomorrow I walk into your house and I say your house is not yours anymore” Gautam Pingali, Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building

    … powerful

    “What the government didn’t count on was that you can breed out the colour in our skin, but you cannot breed out the culture in our hearts and minds. That there’s no way our stories will die while I stand here today.” Shannon Foster, Centre for the Advancement of Indigenous Knowledges

    Come and see the best that UTS research has to offer.

    2019 UTS 3MT Final, Wednesday 25 September. Register now at

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    An 80,000 word PhD thesis would take 9 hours to present.

    Their time limit:
    3 MINUTES!

  • About 3MT

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    Prizes and rules

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    Faculty heats

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    Eligibility and progression

  • 3MT

    Previous winners

    2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016

  • Take a moment to think about the word congestion. Most of us associate it with cars, roads and the journey to work. But what we should think about is passenger congestion because each day 66% of daily trips made on Sydney Trains occur during peak times resulting in heavily congested stations and delays to rail services.

    To you passenger congestion might seem like an inconvenience, but in reality it dictates how many trains we fit on our network. You see, when passengers take too long to board and alight, the safe distance required between trains increases. This causes delays that extend through the network until there is no more space for additional trains. And that doesn’t just affect your journey home. It has implications for the sustainable and economic viability of an entire city.

    So why are people taking too long?

    Well on top of the 1.3 million passengers using Sydney trains, people are glued to their phones, cutting corners and causing collisions. Some people stop in no waiting zones, while others use the opposite side of the stairs. And let’s not forget the passenger who barges their way onto the train before everyone else gets off. These behaviours impact how we move through stations and ultimately contribute to chronic passenger congestion.

    In answer, I propose Responsive Nudges as a new technique to improve passenger flows in train stations. Imagine, a light-up tile changing from green to red if you stop in an exit zone, or hand rails that indicate the best side to avoid oncoming passengers? These are responses … These are nudges using intuitive signs, symbols and colours to guide you through the station in response to passenger congestion.

    To function, these Nudges require 3 robotic components. Sensors allow us to see what’s going on and actuation widgets deliver the nudge. But there is one part missing, the cognition system. This system needs sense making capabilities to evaluate behaviours and determine what nudge will improve the flow.

    My research investigates 3D infrared data that detects walking characteristics in congestion hotspots and through online questionnaires I gauge passenger perceptions of walking behaviour. Together these world-first findings identify new and known passenger behaviours that could be nudged to improve flow. Ultimately, my research will guide widget design helping ease congestion, saving you time and adding millions to Sydney’s economy.  So in future if you receive a nudge, just remember less congestion equals more trains and a smooth journey home.

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