Category / BU research

24/5/16 – Smart Cities Sandpit

creativity road signJust a quick reminder before the long weekend, to sign up for the forthcoming Smart Cities sandpit on Tuesday, 24th May 2016.

To take part in this exciting opportunity, BU staff should complete the Smart-Cities-Sandpit-Application-Form and return this to Dianne Goodman by Tuesday, 17th May (extended to allow for those taking leave around the Bank Holiday). Places are strictly limited.

By applying, you agree to attend for the full duration of the event on 24th May (c. 9:30 – 16:30). This event will be held in BU’s Executive Business Centre (EBC).

If you are one of our external blog subscribers and you are interested in attending or if BU staff have any queries prior to submitting your application, please contact Emily Cieciura, RKEO Research Facilitator: EU & International.



This event is especially pertinent given this announcement from the Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership:

£23.3 million will be invested into four major transport schemes to improve access into and around the Port of Poole and help boost economic growth in the area.  The funds have been secured by Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership as part of the Dorset Growth Deal.

The four schemes will be delivered by the Borough of Poole and include:

  • A £4.3 million investment into the A349 (the main link road into the Port of Poole and the town centre from the A31) at Gravel Hill:
    • Stabilising and strengthening embankments
    • Increasing capacity for motor vehicles at the Queen Anne Drive junction
    • Improving facilities for pedestrians and cyclists
  • £2 million junction, pedestrian and cyclist improvements at Darby’s Corner and Dunyeats junction.
  • New ‘approach spans’ for Poole Bridge i.e. the parts of the bridge that carry traffic from the land to the main section of the bridge (the green copper towers).  This £4.2 million superstructure replacement will ensure the bridge continues to offer a vital route into the port:
    • Carriageway widened to 6.5 metres
    • Conversion of footpath into a 2.5-metre-wide shared footway/cycleway
    • Extension of shared footway/cycleway along the lifting spans
  • £13 million worth of major access improvements to the Port of Poole on the town side of the Backwater Channel and new development sites.  Improvement to a number of key junctions including redevelopment of Hunger Hill.

What will these improvements achieve?

These major transport infrastructure projects will improve access into and around the Port of Poole, unlock regeneration sites, create more highly skilled jobs, improve housing and drive local economic growth.

When will work start?

The current work schedule start dates are as follows:

  • Dunyeats junction – May 2016
  • Darby’s Corner – 2018
  • Gravel Hill – July 2016
  • New approach spans for Poole Bridge – September2016
  • Townside access improvements – 2017/2018.

What are ‘Growth Deals’?

Growth Deals provide funds to local enterprise partnerships for projects that benefit the local area and economy. A total of £79 million for Dorset has already been successfully bid for by Dorset LEP through the Dorset Growth Deal, which aims to bring together local, national and private sector funding to unlock and unblock key housing and employment sites, create more highly skilled jobs and support economic growth.

£23,310,000 has been allocated to fund transport infrastructure improvements into and around the Port of Poole.  This figure includes both Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership’s growth deal funding (90%) and a local contribution from the Borough of Poole (10%).

 For more information

For more details about the Port of Poole growth deal visit

“This multi-million-pound investment into the Port of Poole’s transport infrastructure will not only safeguard important road and bridge routes but will also unlock economic growth into the region.” 

Gordon Page, Chairman, Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership


BU guide to full economic costing and other useful information

Research funding wordleIf you’re thinking of applying for external funding to carry out research or knowledge exchange activities then you may find these useful links (on the staff intranet) on BU processes of help:

These are all essential reading if you are thinking of applying for external funding.  Please contact your Funding Development Officer as soon as you know you want to apply for an opportunity.

Pollinator Exchange HEIF project connects practitioners and academics in common pursuit of urban pollinator conservation

Pollinators are vitally important ecosystem service providers. They have been credited with being responsible for pollinating one-third of the food we eat; indeed many of our crops are wholly or partially dependent on insect pollination. Hence, the decline in pollinator populations has been a cause of concern not just for scientists, but for governments and the public at large. In the UK, this has led to an official government strategy on how to best protect our pollinators: the National Pollinator Strategy (Defra 2014).

Taking into account the growing number of studies that show the vitally important role urban areas can play in pollinator conservation, the strategy recognises pollinator-friendly management across towns and cities as a key component in nationwide efforts to halt their decline. While understanding of urban pollinators’ needs and experience in managing urban green spaces for their benefit is accumulating, it can often be difficult for practitioners to find the practical advice they need to implement the right measures. This was highlighted at a recent meeting co-organised by Defra and the University of Bristol’s Urban Pollinators Project which recommended the establishment of a central repository of information for urban practitioners.

BU’s Pollinator Exchange HEIF project, launched in October 2015 collaboratively between the Faculty of Science and Technology and the Media School, aims to fulfil this role. It will result in an online portal that links practitioners, academics, NGOs, private gardeners, ecological consultants and anyone else with an active interest in urban pollinator conservation. Users are invited to share relevant guidelines, case studies, summaries of peer-reviewed papers and other content that will help urban green space managers make pollinator-friendly choices based on the latest evidence.

The project is supported by Bournemouth Borough Council and the Bumblebee Conservation Trust. A stakeholder workshop in May will provide potential users with the opportunity to comment on the portal’s content and usability, ensuring it will be both useful and intuitive when launched in July. For questions or feedback, please contact Project Manager Kathy Hodder ( or Research Assistant Arne Loth (

Quick guides have been updated

Help and support signpostWithin the Research Toolkit (see menu link above), we have several quick guides for applying to various funders and for certain activities.  These have been updated this week and so do check them out.  Added to them are useful links to BU processes, which are only available on our staff intranet.  These are:

These are all essential reading if you are thinking of applying for external funding to carry out your research and knowledge exchange activities.

Save the Date! Interdisciplinary Research HE Sector Day – 21st June 2016

See more recent blog post for updated information. 

Save the date for REKO’s forthcoming Interdisciplinary Research Sector Day!

interdisciplinary-1It will take place on Tuesday, 21st June 2016 in the Executive Business Centre.

There will be speakers from BU and other organisations plus plenty of opportunity to network with academic and professional research administration colleagues from other universities. Already confirmed are speakers from HEFCE, Sussex, Brunel and BU.

The event will be advertised to colleagues in other institutions so, if you would like to help promote this event to people in your professional network, keep an eye on this blog for further information in the coming weeks. Academic and Research Support staff from the Higher Education research community are welcome to attend this free event. Please share this link with others in your professional network.

For more information before the programme and booking instructions are published, please contact Emily Cieciura in REKO.

Determinants of bank profitability in transition countries: What matters most? – Download and read this article while you can!!

Res publicationDr. Khurshid Djalilov and Professor Jenny Piesse recently published with the Research in International Business and Finance on ‘Determinants of bank profitability in transition countries: What matters most?’.


The aim of this paper is to investigate the determinants of bank profitability in the early transition countries of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), and in the late transition countries of the former USSR. We apply a GMM technique for the period covering 2000–2013. The results show that profitability persists and the determinants of bank profitability vary across transition countries. Particularly, the banking sector of early transition countries is more competitive. However, the impact of credit risk on bank profitability is positive in early transition countries, but negative in late transition countries. Government spending and monetary freedom negatively influence bank profitability only in late transition countries. Moreover, better capitalised banks are more profitable in early transition countries implying that these banking sectors are more robust. A range of possible approaches that governments can take to further develop banking sectors are discussed.

The full article is currently open for access and download for a short period of time through this link – so please make use of this temporary open access opportunity to read/or download the paper for your own use.

Future of the Je-S system

Je-S logoThe Research Councils have informed us that they will be upgrading their electronic grants submission service in 2017.  The Je-S system has come to a natural end and they plan to design a smarter, simpler more user friendly service in line with the latest digital standards. Work is already underway to design the new awards service. This work is based on extensive user research and BU will nominate a primary coordinator (from RKEO) to engage with RCUK about this project.

What sort of improvements can you expect?

As an applicant, peer reviewer or research office administrator, you will no longer use the Je-S system to apply for grants, submit reviews or manage your research organisations grants activities. There will be an entirely new external portal. In future the whole grant application form will be digitised, which means in the majority of cases no more uploading of attachments; and there are other improvements such as in-built formatting for font size and word count, improved dashboards to help you manage your grant activities as well as guidance relevant to a particular funding opportunity close at hand, all on the one screen, while you are applying. This is just some of the functionality being developed and iterated through user testing and feedback.

When will the new system go live?

The ambition is to start to run a small number of funding opportunities through the new system by March 2017 to test that everything is working as it should be. After March 2017, there will be parallel running of the new awards service and Je-S, which will be gradually phased out throughout 2017. We expect the full transition from Je-S to the new awards service to be completed by May 2018.

How you can keep up to date with what’s happening?

This is an important programme of work and RCUK are keen to keep you informed of progress. You can receive regular updates about this project by subscribing to their mailing list at

For updates about news and changes to Research Councils grants service more generally,  you can sign up to their quarterly grants newsletter at

‘Re-Imagining Conflict-Transformation: Making Memory Meaningful’ – A one-day Workshop on 6th May 2016

This one-day workshop explores interdisciplinary and innovative approaches to dealing with a country’s troubled past through memorialisation as a key aspect of transitional justice. It is organised by the Conflict Transformation Studies team as part of the Centre for Conflict, Rule of Law and Society (Bournemouth University).
Location: Executive Business Centre (7th Floor, EB706), 89 Holdenhurst Road, Bournemouth, BH8 8EB


9.00 Arrival and registration

9.30 Introduction and Welcome by Melanie Klinkner and Welcome by Sascha Bachmann (Director of the Centre for Conflict, Rule of Law and Society)

9.40 Key Note Address by Nora Ahmetaj, Co-founder of the Centre for Research, Documentation and Publication (Kosovo): ‘Critical approaches to ‘reconciliation’ and transitional justice in Kosovo’s post-war memory’

10.40 Coffee Break

11.00 Panel 1: Chair Avital Biran

Ellie Smith, Newcastle University Forum for Human Rights and Social Justice: ‘Commemoration and Memory: specific justice needs of victims in the aftermath of international crimes and gross violations’

Robyn Leslie, King’s College London: ‘Remember Marikana: apportioning blame or accepting complicity?’

Nina Fischer, University of Edinburgh: ‘National Memory of Trauma and the Perpetuation of Conflict: Israel/Palestine’

12.30 Lunch

13.15 Panel 2: Chair Melanie Klinkner

Denisa Kostovicova, London School of Economics: ‘War Crimes Talk: Transitional Justice and Communication’

Hanna Kienzler, School of Social Science and Public Policy, King’s College (London): ‘Embodied struggles for societal change’

Linda Gusia, University of Prishtina: ‘Breaking the Silence – Recognition of the survivors of wartime sexual violence in Kosovo’

Laura Grace and Stephanie Schwandner-Sievers, Bournemouth University: ‘Quests into post-war Kosovo’s memoryscapes: the interdisciplinary, anthropological and co-creative challenges of BU’s fusion project for a serious game’

15.15 Coffee Break

15.45 Roundtable discussion

What and/or who can make transitional justice initiatives work? How can contested memories be integrated to support conflict transformation? Reflections and insights from past, present and towards the future. Facilitated by Stephanie Schwandner-Sievers and Melanie Klinkner (Bournemouth University).

Confirmed panel Members include:

Nora Ahmetaj (Centre for Research, Documentation and Publication),

Nina Fischer (University of Edinburgh),

Eric Gordy (University College London),

Hanna Kienzler (King’s College London),

Denisa Kostovicova (London School of Economics), and

Christian Pfeifer (Forum Civil Peace Service).

17.00 Closing remarks

Tabled Paper(s): Vjollca Krasniqi, University of Prishtina: ‘War, Law, and Justice in Kosovo’.

Contact: For more information, please contact the organisers Melanie Klinkner ( or Stephanie Schwandner-Sievers ( For urgent matters on the day, please contact Reception at the Executive Business Centre on 01202 968003

Registration: this event is free of charge. However, spaces are limited. For participation please register by 27 April 2016 with the organisers.

TOMtalks: Tomorrow’s Oceans Matter: an evening of short talks and films

We have a fantastic event happening at BU on Wednesday 27th April, organised by the Litter Free Coast and Sea project with support from Bournemouth University.

It is an open event and anyone is welcome to attend. Details are on the eventbrite page.

There will be 4 excellent speakers sharing how they have been working to help protect and create cleaner oceans using some very innovative methods. There is a bit more information about the project below.

How does ocean plastic turn into boardshorts? Is 2 minutes enough to turn the tide of beach litter and can artwork from the tideline define our impact on the sea?


Wednesday 27th April, 6.30-9.00pm. Talks start at 7pm. Tickets are FREE and bookable on eventbrite. Tea & coffee provided.

Electroacoustic music analysis: new publications from Dr Ambrose Seddon and Dr Panos Amelides

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A new Cambridge University Press book Expanding the horizon of electroacoustic music analysis includes chapters by EMERGE members Dr Panos Amelides and Dr Ambrose Seddon.

Published on 7th April, this edited collection presents a state-of-the-art overview of analysis methods for electroacoustic music in this rapidly developing field. The book explains the needs of differing electroacoustic genres and puts forward a template for the analysis of electroacoustic music. It also discusses the latest ideas in the field and the challenges associated with new technologies.

Ambrose’s and Panos’s chapters appear in the final section of the book, which demonstrates new analytical methods in action. Ambrose’s chapter focuses on the analysis of Andrew Lewis’s Penmon Point, whilst Panos’s chapter, co-authored with Prof Andrew Hugill (Bath Spa University), explores audio-only computer games, focusing on Papa Sangre.

More details are available here:

Investigating the Effects of Environment on Prey Detection Rates: A Key Variable in Human Evolution

We would like to invite you to the latest research seminar of the Creative Technology Research Centre.Prey_Detection


Title: Investigating the Effects of Environment on Prey Detection Rates: A Key Variable in Human Evolution


Speaker: Peter Allen (a Bournemouth University PhD student funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council)


Time: 2:00PM-3:00PM

Date: Wednesday 27th April 2016

Room: PG19 LT, Poole House, Talbot Campus [please note the change from our usual venue]




This research project applies cutting edge videogame technology to conduct a psychology experiment which is designed to test human visual acuity as far as it relates to prey detection rates. The original contribution to knowledge is the acquiring of experimental data which is then used to investigate the effects of the environment on prey detection ability and help address open questions in the field of paleo-anthropology concerning human evolution.


The environment plays a major role in determining the hunting strategies which upper Palaeolithic humans would use when hunting ungulate species. In open environments such as savannah and grassland, humans relied on persistence hunting whereas in closed areas like forest there was preference for ambush hunting and careful planning to intercept migrating herds. These hunting styles are thought to have affected human evolution by selecting for required anatomical and cultural features. Persistence hunting utilises endurance running which requires a gracile form and the ability to regulate body temperature without slowing down, whereas encounter hunting relies more on strength and social coordination.


Little work has been done to understand the role which the composition of the environment plays in prey detection ability, which in turn determines which hunting styles can be utilised and therefore what features would be selected for in different geographically separated Palaeolithic human societies. This project aims to test the hypothesis that prey detection ability will vary according the composition of the environment in terms of the density of vegetation (open or closed-ness) and the assemblage of floral species contained within.


We hope to see you there.


Team-work on Team-based Learning Project : My experience as a URA

Blog post by Jade Offer, Undergraduate Research Assistant (Innovative Pedagogy)

I applied to become an Undergraduate Research Assistant (URA) as I believed it would help me develop and learn new skills, and it did! As an accounting student, I enjoy working with numbers and that is why I initially applied. The field I choose was unrelated to my degree course and was something I knew little about: the teaching of pathophysiology to student nurses. Despite this I was fully immersed within the research and have really enjoyed my experience.

Fortunately enough I was chosen alongside a fellow student to work on a research project entitled: An Evaluation of Team-based Learning (TBL) in teaching Applied Pathophysiology to Student Nurses. Working with a fellow research assistant made the job even more fun, and was extremely helpful as we could talk and meet with each other to analyse the data, and to aid each other in inputting the data efficiently. We were welcomed into a team with the research leads; Dr Jonathan Branney and Dr Jacqueline Priego, both of whom provided amazing support for us both as we analysed and organised the research they had previously conducted. They both took time out of their schedules to teach us how to use the new research software we needed to use and made regular contact to assist us, which was greatly appreciated.

My involvement in the project

  • Attend regular meeting with the team to discuss next steps
  • Reading previous literature on TBL (relevant articles to our research)
  • Developing spread sheets to organise relevant exam results data
  • Using transcript software to analyse qualitative data
  • Using SPSS to carry out statistical analysis on the quantitative data collected
  • Communication Skills- Composing and delivering presentations

I also had the opportunity to be involved in SUREBU 2016, which is a showcase of research carried out by Bournemouth University students. We were both given the opportunity to present at national conferences, which we hope to attend, as it is an amazing opportunity and privilege. We have also been given the amazing opportunity to be involved in writing a professional research paper that our team hopes to get published, which is very exciting!

What I have gained

  • Presentation skills- delivering a verbal presentation of our findings and how the research was conducted
  • The importance of participant anonymity and the rules of handling important data
  • The important of research in making future changes and trialling new ideas
  • The development of a research project- from raw values to understandable statistics
  • A keen interest and knowledge of Team-based Learning
  • Knowledge in a new field which I would not have otherwise been exposed to

 I would highly recommend applying for a URA job, it has been such a beneficial experience for me; acquiring new skills, developing existing ones and meeting and working along side motivated and friendly individuals. Immerse yourself in the research job and you will find it an invaluable experience alongside your studies.

Jade Offer, BA (Hons) Accounting and Business student, year one