Department of Archaeology student Hari Blackmore worked with scientific instruments provider Analytik, to explore likely future developments in the use of spectroscopy and spectral imaging in UK.

Hari spoke to us by video about the challenges he faced in trying to estimate the future sales of some specialist niche market products. Here is some of the transcript:

“My project was to look at trends in spectroscopy and imaging for heritage and archaeology, using meta analysis of the last decade. It was basically a market research overview of the potential for selling various types of spectral imaging and spectrometer products, into the archaeological and heritage science academic research sector. I was tasked with gauging the size and potential for future growth and current trends in the use of those this equipment in archaeology and heritage science.

I chose to partner with Analytik because their proposal or the problem sent out by Cambridge Grand Challenges took my interest. It was about dealing with a problem they had in that they don’t sell many products, so they can’t really do statistical analysis of their sales to see where they should focus and what they could concentrate on in the future.

I had an idea of using literature search, literature review, and keywords to help them increase the kind of statistical sample size of the trends in the areas they’re trying to sell into and the types of equipment they’re trying to sell, and I thought I could help them with that proposal. I made the proposal and it was accepted by them and they thought it was a decent idea.

The end result of the project with Analytik was a report on market trends or research trends, and the kind of topics that theirparticular types of spectrometers were used in over the past 10 years, setting out what has been researched, what is going to work, what is likely to be researched, I did that through both the available literature and online literature search. A survey of people out of academics, almost 50 in total, got back to me telling me about what areas are likely to grow, and what are the areas where Analytik should invest their time trying to sell particular types of equipment.

There’s a report setting that out and also I’ve presented that information to them, as well as to all of their relevant staff, which helped them. They’re not going to read the whole report, it was a very long report, but they were hopefully quite satisfied. It is on their website, and they can track who clicks on it, where they click and where they’re coming from. Hopefully that information will also help their marketing strategy as well. The experience of working in the commercial sector was helpful for my future career, so I would recommend the Cambridge Grand Challenges fellowships to other students”

Hari Blackmore’s placement with Analytik took place between November 2019 and February 2020. Read more about it on the Analytik’s own website: Analytik Partners with Cambridge Grand Challenges for 3 Month Study of Trends in Spectroscopy and Imaging for Heritage and Archaeology | Analytik Ltd

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