Recent articles..

North Wales Brain Injury Service – Independence in cooking tasks

This competition aims to promote independence in cooking tasks , to identify and develop innovative solutions that maximise the benefits for brain injury service users’ and benefits for public services.

On Thursday 26th February 2015 the competition will launch to seek and develop innovative solutions that will promote independence in cooking activities for North Wales Brain Injury Service users rather than current practice which involves direct one to one prompting from therapists and support workers. 

Organisations will be invited to compete for a share of a total £160,000 fund for the further development and commercialisation of innovative technologies, processes and business models.

The competition will open on 26th February 2015 and close on 20 April 2015. There will  be a formal launch event on Monday 23rd March 2015 in Wrexham.   

Once the competition is open, interested parties will be able to get further information, register their interest and book a place at the briefing event on 23rd March 2015 via the following email address;

 For further details click here.

Grants Academy small grants scheme launched!

RKEO are delighted to launch the Grants Academy small grants scheme! This scheme, only available to members of the Grants Academy, offers funding of up to £2000 for small or pilot studies which will lead to a submission to an external funder. It is anticipated that it will allow the collection of pilot data, but other activities will be considered. All current grants academy members are encouraged to submit an application; it is anticipated that 5 awards will be made. All projects must be completed by 31st July 2015.

The deadline for proposals is 4th March 2015. Any queries should be directed to Jennifer Roddis – . The application form and guidance can be found at I:\R&KEO\Public\GA pilot funding 2014-15. We look forward to receiving your applications…

The editor is a *!@#*!

Editors of academic journals are regularly cursed by academics worldwide.  At universities across the globe we can regularly hear expression such as “Who does the editor think he is rejecting my paper?” or “Why does it have to take six months (or more) to find out my paper is rejected?” or “Why does the editor not understand how good/novel/innovative/… our paper is?  These kinds of expression of dismay may or may not be accompanied by an expletive.  Being both busy editors and well published authors we thought timely to put pen to paper and explain the work (role and limitations) of the typical editor of an international academic journal.

First, being an editor is not all bad, and is actually a privilege. It is an opportunity to nurture new authors, be at the forefront of your discipline and it is part of being a ‘serious’ scholar. However, we have been at the receiving end of the wrath of authors dissatisfied with something we did or didn’t do as an editor AND we have been disappointed as authors with what we perceived to be, poor editorial decisions!

We wrote a short outline of the proposed paper and send it to the editor of Women and Birth.  The idea was readily accepted and resulted in a paper published this week in the scientific journal.

The paper includes little snippets of insight and advice to authors.  For example, a reminder that the average editor of an academic journalist an unpaid volunteer, usually a full-time lecturer and/or researcher with a busy day job, who does most of her editorial work on Sunday morning when the kids are still in bed or Tuesday night after the second-year marking has been completed. We hope that knowledge of the editors’ role will help authors (a) understand the submission process better; and (b) be a little bit more patience with the editors.  And, last but not least, we hope our article helps the development of editors of the future.


Jenny Hall, Vanora Hundley & Edwin van Teijlingen



Hall, J., Hundley, V., van Teijlingen, E. (2015) The Journal editor: friend or foe? Women & Birth (accepted).

Thinking about monographs in a world of open access – blog post by Professor Geoffrey Crossick

Original article is published on 22 January 2015 via –

Distinguished Professor of the Humanities, School of Advanced Study, University of London

In this post, Professor Geoffrey Crossick introduces his report on monographs and open access, outlining the key messages of the report and giving his personal take on the issues and the wider contexts. Professor Crossick is Distinguished Professor of the Humanities, School of Advanced Study, University of London and led the HEFCE Monographs and Open Access Project.
Open access to research publications has in recent years emerged as a major issue for academics, publishers and funders. Discussion and policy have, however, overwhelmingly focused on articles in journals. That is where funders, including HEFCE and RCUK, have announced mandates which require open access, and with most academic journals now published in digital format it is easier to think about making them open access.

There has been only limited discussion of how open access might apply to books, even though these are an important way in which academics in the arts, humanities and social sciences communicate their research. This classically means a monograph, but research books also include works such as scholarly editions, books of research essays by different authors, and scholarly exhibition catalogues.

I say only limited discussion, but underneath the surface there has been a great deal of paddling going on. This has meant debates about how monographs (I’ll use the term from now on to refer to all research books) might be made available on an open access basis, and a variety of initiatives to find financially and organisationally viable ways of doing so.

The Finch Report on open access focused above all on journal articles, and acknowledged that more work was needed to understand the issues with respect to monographs. HEFCE explicitly recognised this when it announced that it would not require them to be open access for the next REF.

And that is where I came in. Late in 2012 HEFCE invited me to lead some work on the implications of open access for monographs. The aim was not to come up with Finch-style policy recommendations, because the development of open access for books is at too early a stage for that. What was needed was some consultation, collecting of information and thinking with a view to producing a report that would be helpful to those interested in developing policy though not in itself setting out what policy might be.

I readily accepted the invitation. Book-centred disciplines have been part of my life as an academic (I’m a historian) and in my roles in higher education and research management. The arts, humanities, and social sciences matter to me, and I appreciate the importance of securing the future of the research book in a changing world of scholarly communication.

I put together an Expert Reference Group drawn from academics, librarians, publishers, funders and others to support me in this work. Together we set about a project that from the outset was not about open access alone, but about the whole position of the monograph today. If we didn’t understand the role of the monograph in research activity and communication, if we didn’t understand its function in the cultures of disciplines and departments, if we didn’t know what was happening to the monograph today, then we really couldn’t begin to understand what open access might mean for it.

My report to HEFCE (and to the AHRC and ESRC who supported the project) was published on 22 January. It covers a lot of ground in exploring the key issues that need to be understood by anyone wanting to think about policy in this area. It needs some 70 pages plus annexes to engage with the reality of what books mean, as well as the potential and the challenges of their moving to open access. The report, therefore, has much to say about the world of research and publication in universities.

As a humanities scholar I’m used to reporting complexity where complexity exists, as it does here. Some things are nonetheless clear. Talk of the monograph in crisis is hard to sustain – they’re being published in ever-increasing numbers, academics are writing and reading them, and libraries and individuals are buying them. That doesn’t mean that all is rosy, but it is important to see open access as an opportunity rather than as a response to a crisis.

It is essential that any future for open access monographs sustains their fundamental importance in most arts, humanities and social science disciplines. That means better technology to enable many of the material qualities of the book that go beyond words alone (the format, images, layout, references and much else) to be retained in a digital future. Though few academics told us that they enjoyed reading a whole research monograph on a screen – if they like it they buy or borrow a print edition. Printed books will not disappear.

It also means being flexible about the kind of licences required for books on open access, it means overcoming the potential high charges that owners of third-party rights (to images, texts, bars of music or dance notation) might impose, and it means finding the business models that will make it work. On this last issue there are many experiments underway and it seems to me improbable that any one of them will become dominant – the future will be one with a diversity of business models.

There is much more in the report and I really look forward to its discussion, and to see how HEFCE and others will take the issues forward. Open access carries with it great potential for larger readership and easier access, and also for new ways of engaging with and using the results of research. I was struck by the constructive approach that I found in responses from academics to the question of open access for monographs.

There were, of course, anxieties and policy needs to take these into account, but there was also real recognition of the potential. My advice to HEFCE and other policy makers is that there is much to be gained by working with the grain of academic opinion, and much to be lost by not doing so. I look forward to the debate!

Major HEFCE study of monographs and open access sheds light on complex issues

Original article appeared on 21 January 2015 via –

The Monographs and Open Access Project considers the place of monographs in the arts, humanities and social science disciplines, and how they fit into the developing world of open access to research. It concludes that open access for monographs has a great deal to contribute to scholarly communication, but that the challenges of introducing it will be real and policy should take account of the various issues identified in the report.

The Monographs and Open Access Project was led by Geoffrey Crossick, Distinguished Professor of Humanities at the School of Advanced Study, University of London [Note 1]. It was commissioned by HEFCE in partnership with the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC).

Important messages in the report are that:

  • Monographs are a vitally important and distinctive vehicle for research communication, and must be sustained in any moves to open access. The availability of printed books alongside the open-access versions will be essential.
  • Contrary to many perceptions, it would not be appropriate to talk of a crisis of the monograph; this does not mean that monographs are not facing challenges, but the arguments for open access would appear to be for broader and more positive reasons than solving some supposed crisis.
  • Open access offers both short- and long-term advantages for monograph publication and use; many of these are bound up with a transition to digital publishing that has not been at the same speed as that for journals.
  • There is no single dominant emerging business model for supporting open-access publishing of monographs; a range of approaches will coexist for some time and it is unlikely that any single model will emerge as dominant. Policies will therefore need to be flexible.

Evidence to support the project was gathered through an extensive programme of consultations, surveys, data-gathering and focused research activities. The research was supported and shaped by an Expert Reference Group of publishers, academics, librarians, funders, open access experts with the additional help of distinguished representatives from overseas.

This project was set up following advice to HEFCE that monographs and other long-form publications should be excluded from requirements for open access in the post-2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF).

Professor Geoffrey Crossick said:

‘This project has demonstrated very clearly the vital importance of monographs to the academic community as a way of developing research thinking, a vehicle for research communication, a demonstrator of academic quality, and much more. Open access offers significant short- and long-term advantages for monograph publishing that should be pursued, but the clear message is that the academically essential qualities of the monograph must be sustained in any moves to open access.

‘The project has shown that, for open access to be achievable, a number of key issues must be tackled. Open access depends on a satisfactory transition to digital publishing that hasn’t yet happened for books in the way that it has for journals, and the various business models that can support open-access monographs are still largely experimental. Furthermore, the potential costs of third-party rights could pose serious problems, and there are issues around licensing that will need careful handling.

I have been encouraged by the very positive way in which academics and others have engaged with this project; it is important that this engagement continues, because there is much to be gained by working with the grain, and much to be lost by not doing so.’

Welcoming the report, David Sweeney, Director, Research, Education and Knowledge Exchange at HEFCE, said:

‘This report makes a huge contribution to the evolving debate around open access, shedding much-needed light on the issues around delivering open access to books. The wealth of evidence and commentary that this project has generated will spark continued debate among academics, learned societies and publishers, as well as provide important guidance to research funders and others interested in developing policies in this area.

‘I am very grateful to Professor Crossick for the open and engaged way that he has handled his investigation into this complex and sensitive area. The report is firmly grounded in the perspectives of the communities that rely so much on monograph publishing, and is all the stronger for it.

‘Monographs sit outside the open-access requirements for the next REF. But the long timescales for book authorship and publishing mean that any policy for open-access monographs in future REF exercises would need to be established soon to give due notice to the sector.’

Read the report

Next steps

HEFCE will consider this report and discuss its policy implications with other research funders including AHRC and ESRC, recognising that any steps towards policies for open-access monographs should be preceded by a thorough process of consultation and engagement.

Tweet #OpenAccess


  1. A monograph is a long academic book on a single research topic, normally written by one or sometimes two authors. For this project, the term was used more broadly to include edited collections of research essays, critical editions of texts and other works, and other longer outputs of research such as scholarly exhibition catalogues.
  2. The HEFCE Monographs and Open Access Project launched in late 2013. It was led by Professor Geoffrey Crossick and was overseen by a steering group, comprising membership from HEFCE, AHRC, ESRC and the British Academy.
  3. In March 2014, the UK higher education funding bodies announced a new policy for open-access in the post-2014 REF, requiring that certain outputs be made available in open-access format to be admissible to the next REF. Monographs and other long-form publications were excluded from these requirements.
  4. The report, setting out the findings of the project and the results of the various strands of research, is available on the HEFCE web-site.
  5. The remit of the HEFCE Monographs and Open Access Project was:
  • To develop an understanding of the scale and nature of the difficulties that are thought to be facing monograph publishing.
  • To develop an understanding of the place, purpose and appropriateness of the scholarly monograph within the overall ecology of scholarly communication in those arts, humanities and social science disciplines where it plays a significant part. This should include, among other issues, the importance of the monograph to scholarly communication and to reputation and career progression.
  • To examine the role that innovation in publishing and access models can play in ensuring that the various benefits and attributes associated with the monograph can be sustained and, where possible, enhanced. This will involve examining a range of opportunities, risks, challenges and solutions, which should include identifying and examining current and emerging models for monograph publishing, with particular reference to open-access models.


Dancing with Parkinson’s: Standing Tall, Stepping Boldly and Feeling Lovely

Lunchtime Seminar on Thursday 12th February 2015 , 1-1.50pm in EB708, Lansdowne Campus

Dr Sara Houston, Principal Lecturer in Dance at the University of Roehampton

Against the backdrop of a five-year study into dance for people with Parkinson’s, Dr Houston will examine what it means to ‘live well’ with Parkinson’s through those who participate in a dance class.  She will  examine how participants’ aims to ‘stand tall and step boldly’ are embodied and shaped by their dancing experience.  The seminar  will highlight one woman’s claim that dancing makes her feel beautiful, and, as such, is fundamental to her wellbeing. She will debate the challenge that this claim poses to those who argue that beauty in dance is at best unimportant, at worst disenfranchising. In debating this challenge she will create a link between aesthetics and health through a reformulation of the value of beauty in the context of chronic illness and wellbeing. This link will then allow her to discuss how feeling lovely could become relevant and meaningful within the context of participating in dance.

Dr Sara Houston is Principal Lecturer in Dance at the University of Roehampton.  Currently, she leads a longitudinal mixed-methods research study examining the experience of dancing with Parkinson’s commissioned by English National Ballet.  Her work won her the BUPA Foundation Vitality for Life Prize in 2011 and she was a Finalist for the National Public Engagement Awards in 2014.  For the last five years, Sara’s project with people with Parkinson’s has developed her work on the intersection between dance as art, health and wellbeing and on the tensions and collaboration between quantitative and qualitative methodologies and between art and therapy models of engagement.  In 2014, Sara won a National Teaching Fellowship from the Higher Education Academy for excellence in teaching.  She is Chair of the Board of People Dancing: the Foundation for Community Dance.  Her book Dancing With Parkinson’s: Art, Community and Wellbeing is in preparation and will be published by Intellect Books.

The seminar will be followed by the BU Humanisation Special Interest Group meeting  from  2 -4.30pm  in EB708, Lansdowne Campus. All are welcome.

Recent methods papers at BU

In the past six weeks we saw the publication of three methods papers by BU academics.     BU’s Joanne Mayoh and her colleague Anthony J. Onwuegbuzie in the USA published a paper on mixed-methods approaches in phenomenology.1  They argue that phenomenological research methods work extremely well as a component of mixed-methods research approaches. The purpose of this article is twofold, they provide: (1) a philosophical justification for using what they label mixed-methods phenomenological research (MMPR); and (2) examples of MMPR in practice to underline a number of potential models for MMPR that can practically be used in future research.

In the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences Catherine Angell and Jane Hunt with Professor Emerita Jo Alexander offer methodological insights into the ‘draw and write’ research method. 2   Their literature review identified that the method has been used inconsistently and found that there are issues for researchers in relation to interpretation of creative work and analysis of data. As a result of this, an improvement on this method, entitled ‘draw, write and tell’, was developed in an attempt to provide a more child-orientated and consistent approach to data collection, interpretation and analysis. This article identifies the issues relating to ‘draw and write’ and describes the development and application of ‘draw, write and tell’ as a case study, noting its limitations and benefits.

Finally, BU Visiting Faculty Emma Pitchforth and CMMPH’s Edwin van Teijlingen together with Consultant Midwife Helen MacKenzie Bryers published a paper advocating mixed-methods approaches in health research.3  This paper outlines the different paradigms or philosophies underlying quantitative and qualitative methods and some of the on-going debates about mixed-methods. The paper further highlights a number of practical issues, such as: (1) the particular mix and order of quantitative and qualitative methods; (2) the way of integrating methods from different philosophical stance; and (3) how to synthesise mixed-methods findings.   This paper is accompanied by an editorial in  Nepal Journal of Epidemiology. 4


Professor Edwin van Teijlingen

Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health



  1.  Mayoh, J., Onwuegbuzie, A.J.  (2015) Toward a Conceptualization of Mixed Methods Phenomenological Research, Journal of Mixed Methods Research 9(1): 91-107.
  2. Angell, C., Alexander, J., Hunt, J.A.  (2015) ‘Draw, write and tell’: A literature review and methodological development on the ‘draw and write’ research method.  Journal of Early Childhood Research, 13(1): 17-28.
  3. MacKenzie Bryers, H., van Teijlingen, E. Pitchforth, E. (2014) Advocating mixed-methods approaches in health research, Nepal Journal of Epidemiology 4(5): 417-422.
  4. Simkhada, P., van Teijlingen, E., Wasti, S.P., Sathian, B. (2014) Mixed-methods approaches in health research in Nepal (editorial) Nepal Journal of Epidemiology 4(5): 415-416.


Leading Sociologist to Present Workshop on Achieving and Demonstrating Research Impact!

Professor John Scott, a leading figure in British Sociology, is visiting the University to present a workshop on ‘Achieving and Demonstrating Research Impact’ 9am to midday on 26th March in S202, Studland House, Lansdowne Campus.  The workshop will consider both the achievement and demonstration of impact and will comprise three linked sessions:


  1. What is ‘impact’ and how can it be achieved?
  2. How can impact be demonstrated?
  3. The future of the REF


Hope you can make it as this will be of cross-University interest!

Funding Alert

Understanding, countering and mitigating security threats Research and Evidence Hub

The ESRC, in partnership with the UK security and intelligence agencies, is pleased to invite proposals for the world-class interdisciplinary Research and Evidence Hub on Understanding, Countering and Mitigating Security Threats.

The aim of the Hub is to maximise the impact of existing research in order to inform approaches to countering contemporary security threats to individuals, communities, and institutions. High quality, innovative and ambitious proposals from interdisciplinary academic teams are sought which will work collaboratively with government agencies to maximise the impact of research, while retaining academic independence.

The Hub will work as a catalyst, bridging academic and UK security and intelligence communities. Its main focus will be to enhance and translate existing evidence to inform decisions aimed at mitigating security threats to individuals, communities, institutions in the UK, and to UK interests overseas – without displacing those threats to others.

It is intended that the amount available for the Hub will be up to £1.8 million at 100 per cent full economic cost (fec) per annum, of which 80 per cent (ie up to £1.44 million per annum or up to £4.32 million over a three-year period) will be covered by the UK security and intelligence agencies, through an ESRC-administered grant. Funding is intended to be available for three years, with a possible extension for another two years following a review.

Application process

The deadline for submitting proposals is 16.00 on 24 March 2015.

Shortlisted proposals will be invited for interview in early July 2015. Funding decision will be announced in early August 2015, and Hub is expected to start in October 2015 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Please contact the Funding Development Team in RKEO if you are interested in applying.

Guest Talk “Machine Learning and Computer Vision for Intelligent Surveillance”, 11am 06Feb TAG32

I would like to invite you to a research presentation by Prof. Bailing Zhang, from Xi’an Jiaotong Liverpool University. We are hosting Prof. Zhang here for a week under the support of BU Fusion Funding. Please feel free to forward this invitation to your colleagues and PhD students if it is of their interests.


Title: Machine Learning and Computer Vision for Intelligent Surveillance

Time: 11:00-12:00

Date: Friday, 06 Feb 2015

Room: TAG32 (Talbot Campus)



The aim of intelligent video surveillance is to develop a way to provide reliable real-time alarms and situation awareness from existing surveillance networks without the enormous cost of intensive human monitoring. The tasks of video surveillance often include the detection of  the presence of people and vehicle and tracking them, and the subsequent analysis of their activities. Such research projects have broad implications for Homeland Security, law enforcement and many other types of military applications. There are many challenges to analyse a vast number of video streams in real-time to detect a range of events relevant to security needs. Computer vision and machine learning are the two interwove technologies for most of the modeling issues in video surveillance, for example, recognizing human behaviors. In this seminar, Dr. Bailing Zhang will briefly outline the ongoing projects with his group at XJTLU and discuss some relevant issues.



Bailing Zhang received the Master’s degree in Communication and Electronic System from the South China University of Technology, Guangzhou, China, and Ph.D. degree in Electrical and Computer engineering from the University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia, in 1987 and 1999, respectively. He is currently Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Software Engineering at Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University, Suzhou, China. He had been a Lecturer in the School of Computer Science and Mathematics in the Victoria University, Australia since 2003. His research interest includes machine learning and computer vision, with applications in surveillance and biometrics. Bailing Zhang has over 100 referred papers published.


Dr. Xiaosong Yang

Senior Lecturer in Computer Animation National Centre for Computer Animation
Faculty of Media and Communication
Bournemouth University

BU featured in the Report of the Speaker’s Commission on Digital Democracy

Posted in Uncategorized by unknown

The Speaker’s Commission on Digital Democracy launched on the 26th January 2015 after a long period of consultation and research. CIPPM’s Argyro Karanasiou has provided evidence discussing lawmaking the digital era and her work is cited (n 18, 23, 73) in the report, which can be found here. Evidence has also been submitted by the Media School (D Lilleker, R Gerodimos, D Jackson, D Yuratich) about the citizen’s disengagement with the commons, also cited in the report (n 87).

On Tuesday 3/2/2015 Argyro attended the reception in the Speaker’s House, House of Commons given to celebrate the launch of the report and to thank all contributors.

UUK Student Funding Panel

The UUK Student Funding Panel was established in 2014 to consider the design of the current student fees and loans system in England. The panel is asking for additional evidence and views on how to ensure the higher education system is sufficiently diverse and flexible to deliver an outstanding learning experience to all students.

The panel is seeking comments on the following particular questions:

What evidence exists to suggest that there is unmet demand for more flexible forms of provision?

What are the main forms of more flexible provision that are in demand, and which groups do they appeal to?

To what extent should the current fees and loans system incentivise innovation in teaching?

Are there changes to the system that could be made to improve incentives?

If you would like to contribute, please email Colette Cherry at before the 8th February.

Many thanks

RKEO Coffee Morning – Today!

The RKEO coffee morning is today in the RKE Office on the 4th Floor Melbury House (Lansdowne Campus) starting at 9.30am. The morning will concentrate on the wonders of the Project Delivery Team within RKEO, its personnel, the work they do and how they can help you with live surgeries and demonstrations on open access, BRIAN, the online ethics checklist and RED so please come along!

The Team has three specialist areas: Finance, Outputs and Governance which feed into Faculty dedicated teams. So if you want to know more about managing projects, applying for ethics approval, how to use BRIAN, Open Access or anything else Research and Knowledge Exchange focused please come along and have a chat with us, or just to enjoy a coffee and cake.


The coffee morning will be held in the RKE Office on the 4th Floor Melbury House (Lansdowne Campus) starting at 9.30am on Wednesday 4th February.


We look forward to seeing you!

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