Category / BU research

2018 BU PhD Studentship Competition closes at 5pm on Monday 26 March 2018

Call for submission of a further 18 matched funded Postgraduate Research Projects for the 2018 BU PhD Studentship Competition closes at 5pm on Monday 26 March 2018.

Academic staff are invited to submit proposals for matched funded studentship projects which, if successful, will be advertised to recruit PhD candidates for a September 2018 start.

Full details can be found on the Doctoral College Staff Intranet where the following information can be found:

Submission Deadline:

Applications should be submitted on the Studentship Proposal Form to the Doctoral College via email to no later than 5pm on Monday 26 March 2018.

The Doctoral College will manage the recruitment process along the following timetable:

Date Action
February 2018 Launch PhD Studentships Internal Competition – development of proposals
26 March 2018 Closing date for submission of proposals
w/c 2 April 2018 Faculty panel meetings to rank projects
w/c 16 April 2018 Central panel meeting to allocate funding
14 May 2018 Launch PhD Studentships External Competition – recruitment of candidates
30 June 2018 Closing date for External Competition
September 2018 Successful Candidates start

NERC – New cut-off for ideas for strategic research

NERC invites the environmental science community to submit new ideas for strategic research.

NERC is seeking ideas for research challenges that should be priorities for strategic research investment through strategic programme areas and highlight topics. NERC would welcome ideas from both researchers and those who use environmental science research.

As stated in a previous announcement, ideas for new highlight topics should be submitted by 15 May 2018. Ideas for new strategic programme areas should be submitted by 6 September 2018.

Guidance to explain what they are looking for, how to submit ideas, and how NERC staff can help, can be found on the call for ideas for strategic research page.

2017 saw the fourth cut-off for ideas for strategic programme areas and a summary of the ideas received is also available on the call page. NERC’s Strategic Programme Advisory Group (SPAG) reviewed the ideas and used a number of them to generate the proposals for strategic programme areas that were selected for scoping by NERC’s Science Board:

  • Earth system plastics
  • transforming fractures – exploration of the deep-ocean highways
  • reducing uncertainty in climate sensitivity due to clouds.

All submitters of ideas received by NERC will receive feedback, and there are no restrictions on resubmission of ideas that have not been used to develop potential investments in previous years.

NERC encourages ideas from all parts of the environmental science community and NERC staff are available to discuss potential ideas and provide advice. If you have any queries on the process, or would like advice on a potential idea, please contact them at in the first instance, and they will put you in touch with a NERC colleague who can help.

Congratulations to the winners of the 2018 Research Photography Competition

This year marks the forth year of our annual Research Photography Competition at BU. We received 31 submissions from BU academics, students across all levels and professional services.

Sharing research through photography is a great opportunity to make often complex subjects much more accessible to all.  This year over 1,500 people from all over the world voted in the competition, showing the power of images to engage and inspire.  The research behind photos this year included areas such as archaeology, dementia and forensic science, among others.

The photography theme this year was people.  The theme was open to interpretation, with photographers choosing to take an image of their research team, show people who might benefit or be affected by the research or even take a point of view shot.  This year’s winners were announced in the Atrium Art Gallery on Tuesday 20 March, with prizes presented by Professor John Fletcher, Pro-Vice Chancellor of Research and Innovation.  Details of the winners can be found below.

The photos are currently displayed in an art exhibition in the Atrium Art Gallery which demonstrates the creativity of our BU researchers and the diversity of research being undertaken. It’s a really enjoyable way to find out about research in areas within and outside your discipline or interests, and value the work and efforts.   Do drop in and see the images, if you have a few minutes to spare!

The winners of the 2018 Research Photography Competition are:

1st place: Virtual Reality: The best way to train surgeons of the future?

By Shayan Bahadori (Orthopaedic Project Manager) and Mara Catalina Aguilera Canon (Postgraduate Researcher, Faculty of Media and Communication). 

In recent years we have seen a decline in theatre operating training time for junior surgeons. Simulators have subsequently been increasingly integrated as training, selection and evaluation tools. To fully formally integrate simulation into orthopaedic training we require evidence that the simulators are valid representations of the operations they seek to replicate. This is one the current research focus at Orthopaedic Research Institute (ORI) and we pursue to validate and develop virtual reality orthopaedic simulators so that they may be adopted into mainstream clinical practice.

2nd place: Soil micro-organisms

By Hai Luu (Postgraduate student, Faculty of Science and Technology).

Ciliates protozoa are a distinct group of unicellular organisms. They are abundant phagotrophic micro-organisms in soil, playing important role in food webs by controlling the abundance of smaller microbes and recycling organic matter. Ciliates are characterised by some specific traits. Firstly, ciliates are dikaryotic organisms due to having two different cell nuclei; one is responsible for reproduction; the other one carries out cell functions. Secondly, they use cilia for locomotion and feeding. Interestingly, ciliates can reproduce asexually and sexually. From an ecological and functional point of view, ciliates can be used as bioindicators of soil quality – and this is the aim of our research. We are investigating the species richness and abundance of ciliated protozoa in natural and agricultural soils in order to assess their potential as bioindicators of soil quality. Soil quality plays an important role  in agricultural production in terms of both quantity and quality, this links closely to quality of human life. This image shows Colpoda cucullus, a terrestrial ciliate commonly found in soils around the world, which was taken as a point of view shot through a microscope.

Research group: Hai Luu, Professor Genoveva Esteban, and Dr Iain Green (Senior Lecturer in Biological Science). Department of Life and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Science and Technology.

3rd place: The birth of Carnival U

By Dr Nicole Ferdinand (Senior Lecturer in Events Management) and her MSc Events Management student researchers: Diane Nthurima (pictured on the left), Cindy Chen (pictured on the right), Taylor Treacy, Desislava Pasheva, Amelia Lonia, Rui Boa, Nguyen Phuong Mai and An Thu Pharm.

The photo is a joint entry by the co-creators of the Carnival U which consists of 10 enthusiastic and one BU academic. Together they are embarking on a journey to create a unique a fusion project. The students are working together with BU academic, Dr Nicole Ferdinand, CEL Learning and Teaching Fellow 2017/18, to create 4 workshops which target other university students interested in Carnival. They will engage in action research as part of the development of their workshops as well as evaluate the overall effectiveness of their co-creation efforts which will form the basis of an academic research paper. The project will also leave an educational legacy for other students wishing to develop event management, marketing and digital literacy skills.

The exhibition will be open until Thursday, 29 March at 2pm, in the Atrium Art Gallery on Talbot Campus. Please do fill in one of our feedback cards in the gallery after visiting the exhibition.

Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund: £300m to support our ageing population

Innovate UK have announced that £300m will be available to businesses and researchers to address the challenges facing our ageing population. Some £98m of this funding will be reserved for research and innovation that supports the care and health of people as they age. A further £198m will become available to support the use of early diagnosis innovation and the development of precision medicine.

This funding will be available from UK Research and Innovation with the challenges running in 2018 and 2019.  As the opportunities become available, please contact Ehren Milner ( if you have any queries.


Student Research Assistantship – deadline extended

The deadline for student applications for the SRA Scheme has been extended to 2nd April 2018. The summer programme is for 120 hours work between late May and 31st July 2018 and is open to all campus-based undergraduate and postgradaute-taught students from all faculties who have grades of over 70%. Students can apply via MyCareerHub using the links below.

2D/3D Animation Tool Developer – Student Research Assistant – Dr Xiaosong Yang

An analysis of Channel 4’s broadcast coverage of the 2016 Rio Paralympics – Student Research Assistant  – Dr Dan Jackson and Dr Emma Pullen

Augmented Reality Student Research AssistantDr Tom Wainwright

Blockchain and its potential to transform business operating models in tourism and hospitality – Student Research Assistant – Dr Viachaslau Filimonau

Brythm App Project: Producing media content to support implementation of an app for clinical trials – Student Research Assistant – WeZ Nolan

CAIRIS Research Software Engineer – Student Research Assistant – Dr Shamal Faily

Creating a citizen science website for identifying wildlife habitats: Wildlife Space Search (WiSS) – Student Research Assistant – Dr Anita Diaz

‘Debt Financing Impact – Family Firms UK’ Student Research Assistant – Dr Suranjita Mukherjee

Digital connectivity and leisure in later life – Student Research Assistant – Prof. Janet Dickinson

Entrepreneurial Graduates Student Research Assistant – Clive Allen

Evaluator for children’s emotional education and well being – Student Research Assistant – Dr Ching-Yu Huang

Facebook Personalisation and Digital Literacy (Algorithms and Fake News) – Student Research Assistant – Dr Roman Gerodimos

Student Research Assistant: Food donations in the UK grocery retail sector – The role of local charities – Dr Viachaslau Filimonau

Food waste collection and recycling by local councils in England: identifying ‘best practice’ models – Student Research Assistant– Dr Viachaslau Filimonau

‘Housing Information Retrieval System’ Student Research Assistant – Dr Edward Apeh

HTML5 Game developer – Student Research Assistant – Dr Vedad Hulusic

Inter-professional attitudes and beliefs about pain management: support to write a research paper – Student Research Assistant – Dr Desiree Tait

Low power IoT devices for Network Visuals – Student Research Assistant – Liam Birtles

Marketing & Economic Well-being Student Research Assistant – Prof. Juliet Memery

Marketing and Media Student Research Assistant – Dr Tom Wainwright

Modelling and System design for Intellectual Property law application – Student Research Assistant – Dr Sofia Meacham

M-shopping and senior consumers: A multi-method investigation into attitude and shopping process – Student Research Assistant – Dr Jason Sit

Older carers story project research assistant post – Student Research Assistant – Dr Mel Hughes

Public Engagement Student Research Assistant (Virtual Avebury) – Prof. Kate Welham

Public Service Motivation and Civic Engagement – Student research Assistant – Dr Joyce Costello

Quantifying Dyslexic Performance in Classroom Copying Tasks – Student Research Assistant – Dr Julie Kirkby

Reconstructing Disney Films – Student Research Assistant – Dr Alexander Sergeant

Student Research Assistant for a Political Anthropology Project on Gibraltar & Spain – Dr Laura Bunt-MacRury

Research Assistant: Economic Impact of the Rohingya Refugee Crisis – Dr Mehdi Chowdhury

Student Research Assistant in Managing Crises and Disasters at International Sport Events – Dr Richard Shipway

Student research assistant to support the development of a change framework for Higher Education – Dr Lois Farquharson

Researching the role of public engagement events to increase understanding of financial scams – Student Research Assistant– Dr Sally Lee and Prof. Lee-Ann Fenge

Student Research Assistant to The TACIT Trial: TAi ChI for people with demenTia – Dr Samuel Nyman

Story-mapping Marginal Voices: Using Modes of Interactive Storytelling – Student Research Assistant– Dr Paula Callus

AI and Business Applications – Student Research Assistant – Dr Martyn Polkinghorne

Public Engagement Activities of Postgraduate Researchers – Student Research Assistant – Dr Martyn Polkinghorne

Entrepreneurship Education – Student Research Assistant – Dr Mili Shrivastava

Student Research Assistant (micro-plastics and disease dynamics) – Prof. Robert Britton

Student Research Assistant in Law & AI – Dr Argyro Karanasiou

The effect of signage on driving performance: Student Research Assistant – Dr Christos Gatzidis

The material culture of mantelpieces as expression of self-identity – Student Research Assistant– Dr Fiona Coward

Traveling with Diabetes – Student Research Assistant– Prof. Dimitrios Buhalis

Understanding the Hackers: Student Research Assistant – Dr John McAlaney

‘Who’s a scientist?’ Project Student Research Assistant – Dr Shelley Thompson

Team-based Learning Student Research Assistant – Lucy Stainer

‘TRAnsparent Web protection for alL, TRAWL’ Student Research Assistant – Dr Alexios Mylonas

Research Assistant: UK on the European and International Stage – Dr Sangeeta Khorana

Research Assistant in Entrepreneurship – Dr Thanh Huynh

Student Research Assistant in two-dimensional oxides – Dr Amor Abdelkader

Electrochemical remediation of contaminated soils – Dr Amor Abdelkader

“Institutions, Regulations and Performance” Student Research Assistant – Dr Khurshid Djalilov

Please encourage your students to apply.  All jobs are live on MyCareerHub, our Careers & Employability online careers tool.  You will need to use your staff/student credentials to login.

If you have any questions about th scheme, please contact Charlene Parrish, Student Project Bank Coordinator, on 61281 or email

Research Photography Competition awards ceremony today!

The awards ceremony for this year’s Research Photography Competition is taking place on Tuesday, 20 March from 1-2pm.

The winners that you’ve been voting for will be revealed and awarded prizes by Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation, Professor John Fletcher.

Come along to the Atrium Art Gallery to see all the photographs in person and find out about the fascinating research behind each one, undertaken by our academics, students across all levels and professional services.

The exhibition is open to all and free to attend so please do come along with colleagues and friends. Nibbles and refreshments will be provided.

Click here to register to attend.

If you’re unable to join us today, the exhibition will be open from 20 March – 29 March (weekdays only) from 10am – 6pm.

Don’t miss out!


Enhance your Impact in Preparation for the REF

The Research and Knowledge Exchange Office (RKEO) through the Research & Knowledge Exchange Development Framework (RKEDF) have a number of workshops in the coming months to assist you in developing and enhancing the impact that you can make with your research, with particular reference to the REF.

Please follow the links above to find out more and to book. You will then receive a meeting request giving the room location. Many of these events have input from external presenters; please ensure that you are in the room and ready to commence at the given start time.

If you would like to discuss impact outside these workshops, please contact the RKEO Knowledge and Impact Team.

BU hosts international conference on the state of the world, fifty years after it was turned inside out (circa 1967) and upside down (circa 1968)

Association for Psychosocial Studies Biennial Conference

Bournemouth University, 5th-7th April 2018

‘Psychosocial Reflections on a Half Century of Cultural Revolution’

A half century after the hippie counterculture of 1967 (‘the summer of love’) and the political turbulence of 1968 (‘May 68’), one aim of this conference is to stage a psychosocial examination of the ways in which today’s world is shaped by the forces symbolised by those two moments. It will explore the continuing influence of the deep social, cultural and political changes in the West, which crystallised in the events of these two years. The cultural forces and the political movements of that time aimed to change the world, and did so, though not in the ways that many of their participants expected. Their complex, multivalent legacy of ‘liberation’ is still developing and profoundly shapes the globalising world today, in the contests between what is called neo-liberalism, resurgent fundamentalisms, environmentalism, individualism, nationalisms, and the proliferation of identity politics.

A counter-cultural and identity-based ethos now dominates much of consumer culture, and is reflected in the recent development of some populist and protest politics. A libertarian critique of politics, once at the far margins, now informs popular attitudes towards many aspects of democratic governance; revolutionary critiques have become mainstream clichés. Hedonic themes suffuse everyday life, while self-reflection and emotional literacy have also become prominent values, linked to more positive orientations towards human diversity and the international community.


The programme is now available on the conference website:

There are five keynotes and eighty papers, with presenters from all continents, as well as a number of experiential workshops. As well as examining the main theme of societal change, there is an open stream of papers on a wide range of topics. Methods of psychosocial inquiry are applicable to most topics. As an academic community, the psychosocial is a broad church defined only by a commitment to exploring and linking the internal and external worlds – the deeply personal and the equally deeply societal as sources of experience and action.

BU colleagues can attend the whole conference at the hugely discounted rate of £40, or £25 per day.



NERC – Scoping group for Earth system plastics

Closing date: 16:00 on 4 April 2018

NERC invites applications to join a scoping group that will develop the science case for a potential large strategic research programme on Earth system plastics.


The overarching aim is to provide an understanding of the pathways and fate of plastics in the environment.

Potential research questions include:

  1. What is the nature and scale of plastic sources to the Earth system?
  2. What are the main pathways of plastics across the Earth system? What are the potential stocks and flows of plastic between terrestrial, freshwater and marine systems? What are the key physical, chemical and ecological mechanisms that control fate, behaviour, concentration, decomposition, distribution, and transport over various time scales?
  3. Across their entire life-cycle, how are different types of plastics modified physically, chemically and biologically? What environmental processes promote their degradation or fragmentation? At what point, if any, do plastics no longer interact with the environment and cease to present a risk to the biosphere?
  4. At which points in the cycle might interventions be effective, and which interventions are most appropriate? How can science and industry collaborate to deliver some of these interventions? What is the environmental impact of plastic alternatives?

The SPA will support research on pathways and fate of a range of plastic types, shapes and sizes to gain a comprehensive picture of the behaviour of plastics in the environment to ensure that effective interventions are developed.

Applications are invited from individuals wishing to join the scoping group that will develop the science case for consideration by NERC.

Please click here for further details on the background, details of the scoping group meeting, and how to apply via their online registration form by 16:00 4 April 2018.

Congratulations to the winners of this year’s SURE 2018

Around 80 students took part in BU’s third annual undergraduate research conference: Showcasing Undergraduate Research Excellence (SURE).  The conference is an excellent opportunity for undergraduates and recent graduates to share their work and develop their presentation skills.  This year’s contributions reflected the breadth and depth of outstanding undergraduate research taking place across BU.

The conference allows students to present their work to peers, academics staff and attendees from external organisations.  As well as demonstrating their academic successes, it enables students to see the real world application of their work and develop potential cross-disciplinary collaborations.

Dr Mary Beth Gouthro, co-chair of the conference, said: “The quality of the undergraduate research underway across all our faculties is testament to the potential of our students, and the professionalism and expertise of the staff that support them.  SURE is a great opportunity to celebrate the work of our undergraduates, showcasing their academic progress and provides encouragement into the next steps in their careers.”

As part of SURE, two BU academics shared their own research with the student presenters and conference attendees.  Professor of Behavioural Ecology Amanda Korstjens delivered a session on ‘Interdisciplinary approaches to conservation’ encouraging students to look outside their disciplines to build better practice when conserving wildlife and natural habitats.  Associate Professor Richard Berger presented progress made into his research on ‘MediaLitRefYouth’, a 2 year EU funded project which seeks to understand the lives of unaccompanied refugee children across Europe.  Both of these keynotes provided students the ability to reflect the power and reach of academic research combines with real world applications to help improve lives, for the better.

There were a number of prize winners as part of the conference, including £30 amazon vouchers for best posters, 4 funded spots to participate at BCUR 2018 for one student from each faculty.  The overall winner, Andrew Watt, has been offered a Masters fee waiver.

Winner of the prize for best overall contribution, Andrew Watt, commented, “It feels pretty exciting, I didn’t expect it. My presentation was about how fallers and non-fallers in the elderly differ from a bio-mechanical perspective, which is pretty niche. I found the feedback I received from my presentation were positive and it was good practice to have some difficult questions, especially for this next conference.”

“I’ve had several lecturers who weren’t at the conference contacting me to say congratulations.  I think my lecturers are just really proud of the physiotherapy students who presented. It’s great that they are so supportive.”

More details about the conference can be found on the SURE 2018 website.

SUBU prizes:

 FM winner Claudia Wilkin
FST winner David Hurst

Best poster, demonstration or art installation:

HSS winner Thilo Reich
FST winner Stelian Tsekov
FM winner Dan Pryke
FMC winner Kate Edge

Best original research via oral presentation:

HSS winner Andrew Watt
FST winner Isobel Hunt
FM winner Atanas Nikolaev
FMC winner Bethan Stevenson

Best overall contribution:

Masters Fee Waiver Andrew Watt


Interdisciplinary Research Week 2018

The third Interdisciplinary Research Week (IRW) is being held from 19th to 23rd March 2018. Join us to celebrate the breadth and excellence of Bournemouth University’s interdisciplinary research, and stimulate new collaborations and ideas amongst the University’s diverse research community.

The week-long event includes a programme of lectures, workshops, and discussions, aimed at promoting interdisciplinary workings; to provide an understanding of how to get involved in Interdisciplinary Research.


Inspirational Speaker – Professor Celia Lury

British Academy Visit – Interdisciplinary Research

Collaborating with Others: Becoming a Better Team worker

Networking: Making the Most of an Upcoming Event

New research realities and interdisciplinarity

Interdisciplinary research with industry

Speed Collaborations event

Lighting Talks: What can and should be achieved in Interdisciplinary Research



RKEO Academic and Researcher Induction

The Research and Knowledge Exchange Office (RKEO) invite all ‘new to BU’ academics and researchers to an induction.

Signpost with the words Help, Support, Advice, Guidance and Assistance on the direction arrows, against a bright blue cloudy sky.This event provides an overview of all the practical information staff need to begin developing their research plans at BU, using both internal and external networks; to develop and disseminate research outcomes; and maximising the available funding opportunities.


  • The primary aim of this event is to raise participants’ awareness of how to get started in research at BU or, for more established staff, how to take their research to the next level
  • To provide participants with essential, practical information and orientation in key stages and processes of research and knowledge exchange at BU

Indicative content

  • An overview of research at BU and how R&KEO can help/support academic staff
  • The importance of horizon-scanning, signposting relevant internal and external funding opportunities and clarifying the applications process
  • How to grow a R&KE portfolio, including academic development schemes
  • How to develop internal and external research networks
  • Key points on research ethics and developing research outputs
  • Getting started with Knowledge Exchange and business engagement

For more information about the event, please see the following link:

The eight induction will be held on Wednesday, 21st March 2018 on the 4th floor of Melbury House.

Title Date Time Location
Research & Knowledge Exchange Office (R&KEO) Research Induction Wednesday 21st March 2018 9.00 – 12.00 Lansdowne Campus

9.00-9.15 – Coffee/tea and cake/fruit will be available on arrival

9.15 – RKEO academic induction (with a break at 10.45)

11.25 – Organisational Development upcoming development opportunities

11.30 – Opportunity for one to one interaction with RKEO staff

12.00 – Close

There will also be literature and information packs available.

If you would like to attend the induction then please book your place through Organisational Development and you can also visit their pages here.

We hope you can make it and look forward to seeing you.


The RKEO team

Enhance your Impact in Preparation for the REF

The Research and Knowledge Exchange Office (RKEO) through the Research & Knowledge Exchange Development Framework (RKEDF) has a number of workshops in the coming months to assist you in developing and enhancing the impact that you can make with your research, with particular reference to the REF.

Please follow the links above to find out more and to book. You will then receive a meeting request giving the room location. Many of these events have input from external presenters; please ensure that you are in the room and ready to commence at the given start time.

If you would like to discuss impact outside these workshops, please contact the RKEO Knowledge and Impact Team.