Precious insights and lifelong lessons through ‘This PhD Thinks’ podcast series

dr jovina ang this phd thinks podcast michael ang marketing asia

‘This PhD Thinks’ is a carefully curated podcast series that is informative, interesting and diverse. Every episode is packed with lessons that are lifelong for aspiring leaders looking at ways to be successful and climb up the corporate ladder further.

It is the brainchild of Dr Jovina Ang who started this podcast series to bring bite-sized insights from the PhD community for our work and life. Jovina is a ‘pracademic’ – a former award-winning corporate executive, an author and an educator. 

Whether you are a leader, a budding entrepreneur or a university student, you will find insights that can help you analyse a problem, grow and develop or even make better decisions. You can call this podcast series “The Knowledge Project” of Asia because, in about 20 minutes, you can access the insights and lessons from thinkers and thought leaders.

The episodes are released weekly on Saturdays and also available Thursdays on LinkedIn and Twitter. And characteristic of one of the best podcasts, you can listen to the podcast no matter what’s going on around you.

We had an opportunity to speak to Dr. Jovina about her podcast series this week.

Why did you start the podcast ‘This PhD Thinks’ series?

There are three reasons why I started this podcast series. One, there are so many insights we can learn from the PhD community that we can apply for work and life. However, many of these insights continue to remain in the PhD community because, in general, people do not read academic journals. I want to make these insights accessible in bite-sized episodes where you can listen in the car, exercising or even doing household chores.

Two, two of my good friends are podcasters. They have told me how much fun they have enjoyed doing podcasts. Both of them have learned so much from doing the podcasts. So I thought, why not start a podcast of my own?

Three, for networking and rekindling friendships. Additionally, doing this podcast has given me a platform for reaching out to friends whom I have not been in contact, few even for years. And it has been such an honour for me when they said yes when I asked them to be my guests.

Why did you call your podcast “This PhD Thinks”?

Quite honestly, it took me some time to come up with the focus and title of this podcast series. There are over 2 million podcasts out there. At my end, I wanted to offer a unique value proposition for listeners who are investing their time listening to my series.

I have gained so much from interacting and learning from my PhD colleagues. I also know that most of the knowledge and research insights have remained in academic journals as the average readership of any academic journal is about 10 people. In today’s work environment that is constantly changing, learning, relearning and unlearning is something that we all need to do to stay ahead.

This podcast is my way of making inaccessible knowledge accessible to the wider community who are the working professionals. Hence, that has become the focus and title of “This PhD Thinks”.

Who is this podcast series targeted at?

The target audience of my podcast series are the working professionals. Whether they are senior leaders, emerging leaders, budding entrepreneurs or university students, the topics are relevant and wide for the audience to get something for their very own application for work and life.

How did you come up with the topics for your podcast?

The topics for every episode have been carefully curated. I have intentionally reached out to my network and friends to talk about the topics that any corporate leader or working professional would be interested to listen to. Having worked for more than 20 years in the corporate world and now teaching at several universities, I believe I know what’s top-of-mind for the working professionals.

Given that the podcast is also about my guests, I have also asked my guests for their suggestions and input on the topics that they are passionate about and would be most comfortable talking about.

To date, I have released 14 episodes since the launch of the podcast series. Here are the topics covered:

  • Episode 1: Data
  • Episode 2: Adult learning
  • Episode 3: Games for learning
  • Episode 4: Negotiation
  • Episode 5: Writing
  • Episode 6: Sense making
  • Episode 7: Digital transformation
  • Episode 8: Culture
  • Episode 9: Video games and motivation
  • Episode 10: Lessons from Biology
  • Episode 11: Communication and reputation management
  • Episode 12: Innovation
  • Episode 13: Interconnectedness of Science, Policy and Business
  • Episode 14: Mindfulness

I also put out a summary every 4 episodes to share my key takeaways from the episodes.

this phd thinks podcast weeks 1 to 12 dr jovina ang marketing magazine asia

How many episodes are you planning to release?

For this inaugural season, my aim is to release 20 episodes.

What has been the feedback from the listeners?

The feedback has been positive. Here’re some comments that have been posted on LinkedIn:

“If you want takeaways from the PhD community on a wide range of topics, this podcast is fantastic, it will blow your mind, I promise.”

“Great episode, Dr. Jovina Ang! Thank you Horacio Falcao for the clear illustrations on how conscious choice of words craft better communications that reframe negotiations and steer both parties toward the best outcome. I’m inspired to learn more about negotiation and persuasion!.”

“Hi Jovina, thanks for the invite and stimulating conversation. Congrats as well on creating this thought-provoking podcast!.”

“Both systems thinking and learning by analogy are under-utilised. Great insights.”

“Thank you Jovina for sharing. I was just listening to Anne and I really enjoyed the analogy between the tree and the shadow. It is deep and yet helps me remain focused on my true being and to keep my heart singing.”

What have you personally taken away from doing the podcasts?

Three things: One, it has given me a voice to share knowledge and insights. At this stage of my life, my four-word vision is: “Sharing knowledge. Impacting lives.” This podcast series has allowed me to fulfil my vision.

Two, learning and growing. I have learned so much preparing for the podcast and having conversations with my guests.

Three, it has helped me to rekindle lots of friendships, as well as make new friends along the way.

Has it been easy doing the podcast?

It has not been “a walk in the park”. Doing the recording is easy, I use the Zoom platform because it records the audio tracks – of my guests and my recording separately. Doing the edits is another thing especially to make the podcast sound smooth and flowing.

Where can people find you or reach out to you?

Here are 4 ways to get in contact with me:


Twitter: @jovina_ang

Instagram: @jovina.ang


This PhD Thinks now available on three platforms:


Apple Podcasts:

Google Podcasts:

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