Leadership development for principal investigators (PIs)

Leadership Development
Not too long ago HEFCE funded a project to provide online resources to help principal investigators develop their skills, these excellent resources are hosted by Vitae. This collaborative project involved colleagues at a number of universities across the UK, RCUK, Leadership Foundation for Higher Education, ARMA and Universities UK.

The resources can be found here and include some fantastic sections on:



Concordat on Open Research Data

open dataAs mentioned by Emily in her August HE Policy post, a draft concordat has been published which seeks to make research data in the UK more openly accessible for use.

The concordat has been drafted under the auspices of the UK Open Research Data Forum [Note 1] by a multi-stakeholder working group, which includes HEFCE, Research Councils UK (RCUK), Jisc, the Wellcome Trust and Universities UK.  It aims to help ensure that the research data gathered and generated by members of the UK research community is made openly available for use by others wherever possible, in a manner consistent with relevant legal, ethical and regulatory frameworks and norms.

The concordat aims to establish a set of expectations of good practice, with the intention of making open research data the standard for publicly funded research over the long term.  It recognises the different responsibilities of researchers, their employers and the funders of research, although the intention is not to mandate, codify or require specific activities.

The full draft concordat can be found here – http://www.rcuk.ac.uk/research/opendata/

Key principals are outlined below:

Definition of Research Data used:

“Research Data are quantitative information or qualitative statements collected by researchers in the course of their work by experimentation, observation, interview or other methods. Data may be raw or primary (e.g. direct from measurement or collection) or derived from primary data for subsequent analysis or interpretation (e.g. cleaned up or as an extract from a larger data set). The purpose of open research data is to provide the information necessary to support or validate a research project’s observations, findings or outputs. Data may include, for example, statistics, collections of digital images, sound recordings, transcripts of interviews, survey data and fieldwork observations with appropriate annotations.”

Principle #1

Open access to research data is an enabler of high quality research, a facilitator of innovation and safeguards good research practice.

Principle #2

Good data management is fundamental to all stages of the research process and should be established at the outset.

Principle #3

Data must be curated so that they are accessible, discoverable and useable.

Principle #4

Open access to research data carries a significant cost, which should be respected by all parties.

Principle #5

There are sound reasons why the openness of research data may need to be restricted but any restrictions must be justified and justifiable.

Principle #6

The right of the creators of research data to reasonable first use is recognised.

Principle #7

Use of others’ data should always conform to legal, ethical and regulatory frameworks including appropriate acknowledgement.

Principle #8

Data supporting publications should be accessible by the publication date and should be in a citeable form.

Principle #9

Support for the development of appropriate data skills is recognised as a responsibility for all stakeholders.

Principle #10

Regular reviews of progress towards open access to research data should be undertaken.

RUFUS STONE shortlisted for AHRC Research in Film Award

Kip Rufus location

The research-based biopic RUFUS STONE has just been shortlisted for the AHRC Research in Film Anniversary Prize for best AHRC funded film since 1998.

A central strand of the activities taking place throughout 2015 to mark the AHRC’s tenth anniversary, the awards attracted nearly 200 entries across the five categories.

The awards are designed to recognise the creative and innovative work being undertaken at the interface between research and film by world-leading researchers, practitioners and filmmakers in the UK arts and humanities research community.

RUFUS STONE was based on three years of research on older LGBT citizens living in south west England and Wales. The research team was led by Kip Jones and included Lee-Ann Fenge and Rosie Read on the team.

Bournemouth’s Kip Jones acted as Author and Executive Producer, with Josh Appignanesi directing the film. RUFUS STONE was produced by Parkville Pictures, London.

More information on the research and film-making

Watch the film here.

Research ethics updated forms

ethicsNew academic year, New forms!

New versions of the ethics forms available now, have a look at the research ethics page for the full details, under useful documents.

The new forms are the Participant Info Sheet and the previously titled Consent form, now titled Participant Agreement Form.

Please make sure you start using the new versions from now on, and please do let us know how you find them.

BU Ethics team

Systematic review training to dentistry students at Kantipur Dental College, Nepal


Last week I was invited by a Nepalese colleague to do an introductory lecture on systematic reviews.  We have conducting various training sessions over the years in Nepal (with BU Visiting Faculty Prof. Padam Simkhada) and in the UK.   At Bournemouth University Prof. Vanora Hundley and I have conducted several two-day Master Classes over the past few years we are currently preparing for the next one in early Sys review methods2016 (15-16 Feb.).

This morning I run this introductory session at Kantipur Dental College in Kathmandu.  The session resulted in an interesting set of questions and comments from both staff and students.

Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen




World Federation of Chiropractic Conference, Athens May 2015

From May 13-16th 2015 I had the pleasure of representing BU at the joint World Federation of Chiropractic 13th Biennial Congress/European Chiropractors’ Union Convention in Athens. This is the premiere conference within the chiropractic profession which attracts hundreds of clinicians and researchers from around the world. The Congress was entitled ‘The Alpha and Omega of Spinal Healthcare’ in deference to the historical links with the host country as Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, utilised methods of spinal manipulation.

First up in my session - cool as a cucumber...

First up in my session at Hilton Athens – cool as a cucumber (also thinking, “Maybe I’ll get to present in the big fancy hall next time…?”)

I enjoyed finding out about the latest understanding of spine biomechanics and how this might relate to the diagnosis and treatment of patients with spine conditions, as well as networking with researchers with international reputations in the musculoskeletal field. During my platform presentation I presented work on the measurement of inter-vertebral motion in the cervical spine (neck) that I did as part of my PhD last year at the Institute of Musculoskeletal Research & Clinical Implementation based at AECC, a partner college of BU. The abstract was published in the Journal of Chiropractic Medicine I will be following this up with a paper for publication in the near future. Please don’t hesistate to contact me if this is a research area that you are interested in.

Away from the conference I enjoyed seeing some of the beautiful and historic city of Athens where I enjoyed the freshest fruit and vegetables I’ve ever tasted. The top of Mount Lykavittus (Lofos Lykavittou) provided the most amazing panoramic views – and I could even see the Parthenon from my hotel balcony!

Mount Lykavittus, Athens

Mount Lykavittus, Athens

It was an interesting time, to say the least, to be in Athens. I was expecting there to be protests, particularly around the parliament building, but our visit seemed to coincide with a period of calm, certainly in the area of Athens surrounding the conference hotel. Since then there have obviously been continuing problems for the area from which arose Western culture and philosophy, and the least I can say is that I sincerely hope that things improve soon for present-day Greece.

Statue in Panatheniak stadium

Statue in Panatheniak stadium, Athens

Education / learning research at BU – UoA25 call


The Learning Research Group, convened by CEL and CEMP, is now in the first stages of more formal planning for the REF submission under the Unit of Assessment for Education (UoA25).

In order to plan strategically for the allocation of development funds and for the development of Environment and Impact, colleagues across BU who wish to be included in the provisional REF ‘team’ for UoA25 should, by the end of September, return an updated research plan: UoA 25 Researcher plan Update Sept 15   to Julian McDougall, UoA25 lead.

Have you checked out the interactive Research Lifecycle diagram yet?

If you haven’t then you most definitely should! Our Research Lifecycle diagram is a jazzy interactive part of the BU Research Blog that shows the support and initiatives that are available to staff and students at each stage of the research lifecycle. The information is general enough so as to apply to all disciplines and you can use it to organize and identify the many activities involved in your research. You can explore the Research Lifecycle to find information on how to get started with:

1. Developing your research strategy

2. Developing your proposal

3. The research process

4. Publication and dissemination

5. Impact

RKEO will be adding to the Research Lifecycle to ensure it always contains the most up to date information to support you with planning, organising and undertaking your research.

You can access the diagram from the links in this post or from the menu bar that appears on all screens in the Research Blog.

A Hub for Sporting Excellence and Research

I have been fortunate enough to have been accepted to present two of my recent studies at the British Association of Sport and Exercise Science (BASES) conference on 1st and 2nd of December this year. Not only am I lucky enough to have been chosen to present, I get to visit the scientific hub of English football. The conference is being held at St George’s Park in Burton-upon-Trent, the brand new national centre for English football. State of the art facilities make it a playground for sports and exercise scientists, one that I most definitely will enjoy.

Shoulder counter-rotation

One issue I address in this study is quantifying the relationship between three-dimensional spinal movement and shoulder counter-rotation. Shoulder counter-rotation is the max rotation of the shoulders in the opposite direction to the batsman after the back foot has landed. This counter-rotation is used by bowlers to help generate pace on the ball, however, high counter-rotation values have been shown to place bowlers at increased risk of lower back injury. The mechanism by which this occurs still remained unclear, as shoulder counter-rotation values only takes rotation at the shoulders into account (which could be caused by spinal rotation or whole body rotation). My study aims to fill in the gaps in this knowledge by looking at the relationship between shoulder counter-rotation values and three dimensional movement of the lumbar and thoracic spine.

The technology I have used in the above study is inertial sensing technology and is a novel method of measurement for spinal movement in fast bowling. Therefore, I am also presenting research looking at the reliability of these sensors and how they may offer a more portable alternative to the camera based systems that are used at present. Once again, I would like to thank Bournemouth University for supporting me with the dissemination of this research.



St George’s Park, Burton-upon-Trent

UKRO Visit – 14th October 2015 – Save the date!

UKRO logoDo you aspire to be an EU-funded researcher?

The planning for our annual UKRO visit from our European Adviser, Maribel Glogowski, is well underway. This will take place on Wednesday, 14th October 2015 at Talbot Campus.

There will be an information sharing session for RKEO-only staff in the morning with presentations for all staff in the afternoon (13:00 – c. 16:30). It is expected that the afternoon session will include a general introduction to EU funding and the draft Work Programmes to 2017. You can see the draft Work Programmes in the Subscribers’ area on the UKRO portal. As BU subscribes to this service, all staff can register.

Please register for this event as soon as possible by contacting Dianne Goodman. Once we have your details, we will send the full programme, when it is confirmed. The schedule for the day will also be announced on the Research Blog nearer the date.

If you have any burning EU funding information needs, do let me, Emily Cieciura, know as soon as possible, so that we can incorporate your query into the session, where possible.

From research proposals to job applications: Writing tips from the European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grants workshop

Yesterday I attended an ERC Starting Grants session at the London School of Economics. Although I may never reach the heady, research heights of submitting a proposal to the prestigious, ERC Starting Grants Call (let alone progressing past Step 1, with 9% success rate!), the workshop provided a range of advice equally applicable to preparing: i) funding proposals and, ii) job applications. From the background search to the interview presentation, in many ways job applications are similar to research funding applications.

Firstly, the background search: if possible, find out who has recently received funding in your field. If applying for a position, identify previous successful candidates. What skills and experience did they have? Appreciating these will allow you write your application accounting for your own capabilities, whilst also identifying how the project or position can further your professional and personal development. Awareness of how the project/position can create opportunities to turn your weaknesses, to strengths, is an important advantage at the interview stage. Next, what are the priorities of the funder, company or institution? Does your CV fit the job roles and responsibilities? Does your project proposal satisfy the call?

Secondly, the writing: be ambitious, but avoid sounding unrealistic. Adhere to the application criteria and submission guidelines (even font-size, line-spacing, etc). Provide evidence of how your project is innovative, what makes you stand out, or what specific skills you can contribute. These should relate to the criteria of the position advert or the research call. Preparation is key; start writing as soon as possible, and expect multiple drafts. Build your proposal (or Personal Statement) logically, based on your previous research (or experiences and skills). Make the application a pleasure to read, but stick to the specific guidelines. If preparing a research proposal, use data and graphs; if preparing a Personal Statement, tell a story expanding on your CV. Ask friends and/or colleagues for comments on your application – informal peer-review in preparation for formal peer-review (the same applies when practicing your interview presentation). Importantly you want to convince those outside of your field how you (or your study) can provide a long-lasting difference.

If you are invited to interview, do your research, again. What are the values of the funder, institution or company? Who is on the panel? What is their background? Next, structure a convincing presentation aligned to your application; support each claim with an example, but be succinct and to-the-point. Maintain focus and momentum, but communicate your enthusiasm. Once finished, expect a range of technical and non-technical questions. Ultimately, interview questions will relate to the application criteria, and range from your subject-specific knowledge to transferable skills (i.e., project management skills). Finally, use questions as an excuse to show your audience what you know; view your ‘weaknesses’ as opportunities. If successful, celebrate; if unsuccessful, view as an opportunity. As the ERC Officer mentioned ‘many successful applications come from investigators who were unsuccessful with a previous application and subsequently improved their submission’.

So regardless as to whether you are an undergraduate looking to secure a placement/ postgraduate position, or a Senior Lecturer applying for research funding, translate what you have learnt from previous writing experiences to the opportunities presenting you here and now.

ERC Starting Grant Call

ERC Starting Grant – Funded Projects

EU Funded Projects – Host Countries

James Gavin, Lecturer (Exercise Physiology) – Faculty of Management

Academic and Researcher Induction to Research and Knowledge Exchange at BU

The Research and Knowledge Exchange Office (RKEO) invite all ‘new to BU’ academics and researchers to an induction. The purpose of the induction is to inform you of the following:

Signpost with the words Help, Support, Advice, Guidance and Assistance on the direction arrows, against a bright blue cloudy sky.

  • how we can support you when planning your research career;
  • how to apply for funding (the policies and processes around costs and approvals);
  • how to manage your successful research applications (including ethics, governance, risks and finance);
  • how we can support you on impact, public engagement, outputs and open access, case studies, and a whole lot more.

The third induction will be held on 28th October 2015 on the 4th floor of Melbury House. The format of the day is as follows:

9.00-9.15 – Coffee/tea and cake 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 contact Charmain Lyons, clyons@bournemouth.ac.uk for an official invitation. We will directly contact those who have started at BU in the last five months.

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


The RKEO team

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