“Connecting broadly is meaningless unless you connect deeply.”
— Tiffany Shlain
Traces.Dreams is a place on the web for people interested in the past, passionate about the present, and curious about the future. Here you can find inspiration through a multidisciplinary and multi-regional perspective. Our vision is to make the big questions and dreams of today’s researchers visible to anyone with an interest. We interview researchers from different disciplines around the world to get their perspective on their work, their views on life, their “whys”, their motivations, and their wishes.
Our purpose is to gather and spread their wisdom across the globe. We believe in the transformational power of stories, and we know that if we tell each other what we are working towards, it will be the first step towards our vision becoming a reality. Our ultimate goal is to promote global peace and understanding by celebrating our common human experience, and building an ethical future.
Our mission is to celebrate research, help academics tell their stories, and build learning across borders; whether they be barriers in language, knowledge, religions or education.
Ultimately, we believe there is no stronger power than our dreams and our hopes.
I was born in Italy, where I studied literature. I researched gender history, made prize-winning documentaries about innovation and technology, produced business television programs and corporate videos in Germany. I became a mother of four, lost one of them, lost my way, then found it again thanks to the other three. I’m a story listener with a passion for people, a mission for helping great people tell great stories and the vision of making the world a little bit wiser. I am based in Stockholm and work with a small international team.
”Falling in love is perhaps the shortest way between two people. A shared story, a conversation is probably the second shortest. You fall in love by chance but you have a conversation by choice. Cultivate it!”
My name is Marianna, and I was a PhD student in chemistry until 2 months ago! I have decided to be a Traces.dreams ambassador because there is an army of young scientists over there, hidden by the walls of labs and offices, working to make our world a better place, and I truly believe they deserve more visibility. Therefore, I am going to share the stories of the future generation of scientists, their dreams and their passions. The focus of my PhD project was mainly medicinal chemistry. More specifically, I tried to understand how, on a molecular level, an enzyme extracted from the cotton plant can produce its products. More specifically, I tried to see how can these enzymes can make different products, and see how their pathways can be modified to make new useful drugs. The final aim of the project, which is still ongoing with plenty of PhD students and Postdoc working on it, is to get a full understand of these enzymes, and being able to engineer them so they can make the medicines we need, in just minutes. This is a new way to do medicinal chemistry, but I believe this field is shifting towards this new approach. The traditional idea of a chemist spending days if not months in the lab to produce medicines is slowing fading away. Nature has always been smarter than us, and it provided the world already these little drug-like making machines which could potentially do in minutes what a human chemist can do in days. We just need to understand how they do that! Where do I see myself in 10 years? Oh, who knows! My biggest motivation in life, for how naïve it sounds, is to improve people’s life or at least try. I studied Pharmacy so I could help people getting the right medicines and cure, I did a PhD in chemistry so I could try to discover a faster way to produce medicines. And now I work for a company that helps the communication between Doctors and Patients so that a better service and healthcare is provided because everyone deserves a good efficient care. The future? We will see! I need to thank my dad for my journey so far. He is the best GP I have ever met, always there for the people, nights, bank holidays, did not really matter. He was more a friend than a doctor to his patients, and even now that he is in retirement, people keep knocking at his door for advice. I would like to become like him, admired not for his success, but for the good he did. and keeps doing, to the world.
My name is Nada Al-Hudaid and I am a final year PhD student and filmmaker. I am specializing in the anthropology of religious art and visual representations. I decided to be a Traces.dreams ambassador because I meet many great people and it is a great opportunity to highlight some of the research topics that has potential for making a change. I am going to share stories about people, films, and projects that inspire me and help other people in various ways.