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Dr Gabriele C. Sosso

Dr Gabriele C. Sosso

Contact Details

Dr Gabriele C Sosso

Department of Chemistry, University of Warwick

Research Groups

Sosso Group


Research Interests

Molecular Simulations of Disordered Systems and Phase Transitions

We devise, implement and validate Computational Methods (particularly enhanced sampling techniques) to investigate the functional properties of systems of practical relevance.

We are especially interested in the molecular-level details of Phase Transitions, such as the freezing of water into ice within biological systems - a process which is crucial to e.g. cryopreservation.

The physical chemistry of Disordered Systems, from supercooled liquids to amorphous solids, is another key aspect of our research: we target nanocavities in molecular networks as well as the thermal properties of glasses.

Scientific Inspiration

I was lucky enough to be taught maths and physics by an exceptional character in secondary school, a certain Piercarlo Cattaneo, back in Italy. His passion for science was contagious and never truly left me – a constant reminder to do my best in both my teaching and research.


Supervision Style

In three words or phrases: Relaxed | Objective oriented | Tailored toward each student individually

Provision of Training

Given the nature of the project, which will involve experimental as well as computational components, I will expect to invest a substantial amount of time to train the student myself within the first months. After that, this provision will gradually shift toward a more integrated approach involving several members of my research group, who will complement my training and offer collaborative opportunities as well.

My expectations with respect to the student are chiefly their commitment – which does not translate in any specific number of working hours. What I am truly looking for is passion for the project and scientific curiosity. I have ample examples of students who went “zero to hero” in terms of skills and expertise from the start to the end of their PhD.

Progression Monitoring and Management

I am very flexible in this regard. Some students in my group are incredibly independent – and in that case, I only intervene within their progress to consult, steer, and fix specific issues where needed. Some other students in my group, particularly those who recently started, are still very much expecting me to provide a detailed plan in terms of progression, sometimes on a weekly basis. I am happy to oblige, albeit in my experience this micro-managed regime tends to evolve into a more laid-back supervision style as the students find their confidence. My research group features all sort of flexible working arrangements, which I think reflects the fact that I respect the individual preferences of my students. As I am not overly ambitious myself, what I do genuinely care about is for my student to learn as they go through their PhD. Publications are a by-product, not an end goal.

Communication

Slack is the preferential channel of communication by which I can be reach virtually anytime. I would not expect my students to get back to me outside of working hours, and I try to maintain a healthy work-life balance myself. Crucially, Slack is not meant to be a replacement for human interactions! The group is very well embedded in the computational division of our department, which is a lively environment that encourages people to come into the office and talk to each other. As the student working on this project will be alternating computational and experimental work, it is also essential to facilitate communication between different research group – something that comes rather spontaneously at Warwick given the physical proximity of the relevant research groups.

PhD Students can expect scheduled meetings with me:

In a group meeting

At least once per fortnight

In year 1 of PhD study

At least once per week

In year 2 of PhD study

At least once per fortnight

In year 3 of PhD study

At least once per fortnight


These meetings will usually be face to face. I am usually contactable for an instant response on every working day.

Working Patterns

The timing of work in my lab is completely flexible, and (other than attending pre-arranged meetings), I expect students to manage their own time.

Notice Period for Feedback

I need at least 1 week’s notice to provide feedback on written work of up to 5000 words.