Jakob Blaavand

Jakob did a DPhil in Geometry in Oxford supervised by Prof. Nigel Hitchin and submitted his thesis in 2015.

What do you do now?
I work as a Mathematical Consultant at a small consultancy company. The consultancy I work for has as its main focus to apply mathematics to solve business problems across many different sectors. One very appealing aspect of my work is that I get experience in applied and industrial mathematics that were completely new to me. 

When you were a student, did you imagine you'd find yourself doing what you do now?
As a student I thought a lot about what I wanted to do (and what I did not want to do) once my thesis was submitted. It was not until I learned about the company that I work for that I knew that this was what I wanted to do. 

What advice would you give your student self?
Make sure to use the opportunities around you. Oxford has a lot to offer besides the purely academic. One thing I have been particularly happy about was using the Career Service and their Student Consultancy and getting help when I wrote my job application for my current job.

What's the best thing about your current role?
It is very diverse. I work with clients in many different sectors, and it is interesting to see how the same mathematical techniques can be used to solve seemingly disparate problems. 

How much maths is there in your day job?
A lot. I use high-level mathematics every day. I often consult journals to gain insight into a mathematical topic I want to use to solve a given problem. The company I work for has a strong relationship with the applied mathematical community in the UK and we often consult the community and use the latest thinking. 

What do you like/miss/remember most about Oxford Mathematics?
I miss all the seminars. Every day you had the opportunity to hear about new results from the best mathematicians from around the globe.