What is the PhD Clinic?

Our Clinic is a series of informal interdisciplinary workshops run for and by graduate students in the language, cognitive and social sciences at the University of Cambridge. We are funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and Cambridge Language Sciences. We provide relevant skill training and peer-to-peer support so that young researchers can meet and find solutions to big and small problems they encounter while working on their PhD project.

What events have you got coming up?

Head over to the Events page to find out!

How do I register for the next event?

Go to the Register page and fill out a quick form.

What if I have a problem that is not addressed by an upcoming event?

Tell us about it, and we’ll try our best to organise a workshop that will meet your needs. That’s precisely what we are here for 🙂

So.. who are you?

Glad you asked! The PhD Clinic events are put on by two Cambridge graduate students that fall into the language/cognitive/social science category together with University staff. The current and past team members are all presented below.


Yvonne Frankfurth

Graduate student in Sociology

Yvonne investigates the legislation of reproductive technologies like pre-implantation genetic diagnosis in Germany as part of the research group ReproSoc at the Department of Sociology. She has also co-founded the platform SympatMe, which helps immigrants deal with bureaucracy.



Johanna Finnemann (Organiser 2015-16, 2017-)

PhD Student in Psychiatry

Johanna is interested in how the brain processes input from motor and visual cues and how this might differ in individuals with atypical neuropsychological profiles (autism and psychosis).
She has come back to help out again in 2017 and is passionate about interdisciplinary communication in science.



Heidi Solberg Økland 

PhD student at the MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit

Heidi investigates the brain mechanisms underlying the benefit we get from seeing the face of the person we are speaking to when we try to have a conversation in noisy or challenging listening situations. She has a background in both linguistics and cognitive neuroscience, and is passionately interested in understanding how we manage to comprehend and use language in our daily lives.



Jane Walsh

Coordinator of the Cambridge Language Sciences Initiative

Jane coordinates the many events that take place as part of the Language Sciences Initiative at the University of Cambridge.



Loraine Gelsthorpe

Director of the ESRC Doctoral Training Centre

Loraine is heading the Doctoral Training Centre, one of the largest groups of social science researchers in the UK.

Past organisers


Ana Klimovich-Smith (Co-founder and organiser of PhD Clinic 2014-15)


Nikola Vukovic (Co-founder and organiser of PhD Clinic,  2014)