Recent articles..

Stripping Back the Layers: Women’s spiritual quest for religious authenticity

Having failed to get it externally funded, I decided to hell with it! I would do the project anyway. It was too important a topic to abort on such flimsy grounds; and anyway in the social sciences funding has never been a precursor to undertaking excellent and original scholarship, and this promised to be that.


I have long been fascinated by religion and spirituality as integral to cultural diversity, and this interest has underpinned much of my scholarship in both social work and sociology. Gender studies are equally a passion and so it seemed natural to form a happy union of the two.


For the past eighteen months, and thanks to recent Fusion Funding for part of the project, I have been undertaking a cross-cultural study of women’s experiences of religious commitment across several faith groups in the UK and Malaysia. Both countries share a common historical heritage through the ties of colonialism, where additionally wide-scale migration has forged multicultural and therefore multifaith societies. Each modern nation also struggles to resolve the contradictions and paradoxes created through multiculturalism and claims to a specific national religion.


The aim of the study is to examine the constructions and meanings that women bring to religious beliefs and daily practices, which may be distinctive to those of men, particularly given the extremely powerful influences of patriarchy in organised religion. Thus, the working assumption behind this study is that women will bring their own gendered priorities and understandings as women (and variously as wives/partners, mothers, daughters and sisters) to their individual religious and spiritual beliefs.


For an in-depth ethnographic study the participant sample is extensive, and where by the end of this year, 48-50 individual narratives will complete the data gathering stage. The level of complexity is high for not only does this study cover two contemporary societies, but it also seeks to cover representatives from several different faith groups. Thus, in Southwest England I am seeking to capture the voices of Buddhist, Jewish, Christian and Muslim women, as well as hoping to access female followers of one of the ‘New Religions’.


Across Malaysia, I have covered the same groups but substituted Jewish participants for Hindus.  I also hope to access indigeneous Animists to compare with the revival in pre-Christian ‘nature religions’ that may be found in the evocatively pagan, Dorset/Somerset/Wiltshire landscapes.


Such a large and highly diverse sample group represents a major study of contemporary, gendered faith practices in modern, multicultural societies; and where despite woman-centric theological re-interpretations, such as, for example, Christian feminists theologies or Malaysia’s ‘Sisters in Islam’, the insights from this study are already proving to be original and profound. My initial hypothesis has been both affirmed and challenged by participants struggling to engage with the politics of ethnicity, culture, gender constructions and gender oppression; together with the business of daily negotiating the politics of church/temple/mosque/synagogue – not forgetting, of course, the politics of the home and family.


Participant accounts have been deeply moving at times; and where to my surprise, I have been frequently thanked for giving participants the opportunity to be able to express that which is so important to their individual integrity and sense of purpose in life – and yet which remains a submerged discourse. There are many reasons, political, social and personal for religious expression among women to be largely unheard (and sometimes even a forbidden) discourse in both countries. These too are critical issues of context that are analysed alongside the narratives.


With REF2020 beginning to appear over the horizon, I will seek to do justice to these remarkable narratives in my analysis and the research monograph and peer-reviewed papers being planned. However, what is strikingly apparent is the intense interest participants hold towards their own spiritual journey, where they are also eager to read the finished publications in order to find further insights and connections with other women: impact in itself.


What this reveals to me is that not only is the area of inquiry extremely rich in theme, nuance and contemporary relevance, but that in respect of social impact (however one defines that term) much more is needed of me. Accordingly I am pondering deeply on how I may return and somehow multiply the fruits of this research to the global community of women for whom it carries such intense meaning and many shared commonalities in an otherwise divided world.


Volunteering to be a participant

If this Blog has resonated with you as a woman embracing a religious faith, or as someone who may know of such, I would be extremely grateful if you would contact me directly on Muslim, Jewish and ‘New Religion’ women’s voices in England are still under-represented in the study but all participants from other faith groups are equally welcome.

Obesity prevention in men, findings from a recent HTA Report

Media coverage HTA Report June 2014

HSC Open Seminar


“Obesity Prevention in Men” with Professor Edwin van Teijlingen

Wednesday 2nd July 2014


13.00 – 13.50pm


Bournemouth House, B126



On July 2nd Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen will present findings from a HTA report published this month.  Researchers from the University of Aberdeen, Bournemouth University and the University of Stirling examined the evidence for managing obesity in men and investigated how to engage men with obesity services. The evidence came from trials, interviews with men, reports of studies from the UK, and economic studies.


The research found that men are more likely than women to benefit if physical activity is part of a weight-loss programme.   Also eating less produces more weight loss than physical activity on its own.  However, the type of reducing diet did not appear to affect long-term weight loss.


Prof. van Teijlingen will highlight some of the key messages for Public Health policy and practice.  For example, that although fewer men than women joined weight-loss programmes, once recruited they were less likely to drop out than women.   The perception of having a health problem, the impact of weight loss on health problems, and the desire to improve personal appearance without looking too thin were motivators for weight loss amongst men.

This work has been funded as part of the ROMEO project (Review Of Men and Obesity) by the National Institute for Health Research, Health Technology Assessment Programme (NIHR HTA Project 09/127/01).

The full report can be downloaded here:


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

Beckie Freeman

Academic Community Administrator| Health & Wellbeing Community

01202 962184 |

Dorset Business Awards 2014 Launch

The Centre for Entrepreneurship is delighted to be attending the launch of the Dorset Business Awards 2014. Sponsoring the Entrepreneur of the Year Award again this year, Bournemouth University is is keen to showcase and recognise local entrepreneurs who have made an economic or social impact in the region.

The DBA launch is being held at Parley Manor and Mark Painter, Dr Lois Farquharson, Melissa Carr, Dr Chris Chapleo and Nikki Gloyns are amongst the attendees representing the University.

The Dorset Business Awards are run by Dorset Chamber of Commerce and Industy (DCCI) and award categories have included an Apprenticeship Training Award, Bournemouth University’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award, the Dorset Tourism Award and the Barclays Business Woman of the Year Award.  This year awards include:

  • Entrepreneur of the Year
  • Business Growth Award
  • Excellence in Innovation Award
  • Dorset Export Award

The awards celebrate local achievement and success in the various categories and are an excellent way for local businesses who enter to gain publicity and recognition in addition to being able to showcase their products or services to a wider audience.    Winners are also able to display the DBA KiteMark on their letterheads and literature.

The Dorset Business Awards 2014 Competition opens on Monday 23rd June and runs until 12th September.  Winners are announced in November at the Dorset Business Awards Gala Dinner.   Further information is available from the Dorset Business Awards website.

Dorset Business Awards 2014

Congratulations and Good Luck

Posted in BU research by John Fletcher

May saw an increase in the level of activity for bids being submitted and awards being won with congratulations due to Schools/Faculty for winning research and consultancy contracts.

For the Business School, congratulations to Hossein Hassani for his successful British Academy project to research advance econometrics technique for analysing and forecasting sea level rise, and for his consultancy with Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.  Good luck to Donald Nordberg for his application to ESRC; to Maurizio Borghi for his short course with DEK International; to Dinusha Mendes for her contract to ESRC; and to Mehdi Chowdhury for his application to the International Growth Centre.

Sue Eccles

For HSC, congratulations are due to Clive Andrewes and Sarah Gallimore for their short course with the Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, to Zoe Sheppard, Peter Thomas and Helen Allen for their awardwith the National Institute for Health Research, to grants academy member Jane Murphy and Joanne Holmes for their short course on nutrition, to Vanora Hundley for her match-funded studentship with the Isle of Wight NHS Trust, to grants academy member Carol Clark for her match-funded studentship with Anglo-European College of Chiropractic, to Edwin van Teijlingen for his match-funded studentship with Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, to Carol Wilkins for her match-funded studentship with Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, and to Keith Brown for his short course with the British Forces Social Work Service.

For MS, congratulations to Stephanie Farmer for her consultancy with Breda University of Applied Science, and to grants academy member Sue Eccles for her project with the Higher Education Academy.  Good luck to Kerry Rowland-Hill for her consultancy to THAT Bournemouth Company Ltd, to Liam Toms for his consultancy to Lyme Bay Brewing Ltd, to Julian McDougall for his application to ESRC, to Iain MacRury for his application to ESRC, and to Jian Chang and Jian Zhang for their application to EPSRC.

Mark Brisbane

For the Faculty of Science and Technology, congratulations are due to Jonathan Monteith for his four consultancies with Anesco, ESJA Properties Ltd, Bloor Homes Ltd and North Mead Farm Ltd, to Iain Hewitt for his consultancy with the Association of Roman Archaeology, to Mark Brisbane for his project with the Leverhulme Trust researching the archaeology of Novgorod, to Adrian Pinder for his two consultancies with Aquatonics Ltd and Wessex Water, to Genoveva Esteban for her two short courses with the Society of Biology and the Alice Ellen Cooper-Dean Charitable Foundation, to grants academy member Nan Jiang for his consultancy with Grads for Growth, and to Ross Hill for his consultancy with Environmental Systems Ltd.  Good luck to Rob Britton for his application to Fondazione Cariplo, to Neil Vaughan for his application to the Wellcome Trust, to Hongnian Yu for his application to the Japanese Society for Promotion of Science, to Adrian Pinder and Emilie Hardouin for their consultancy to Natural Resources Wales, and to Kathy Hodder for her consultancy to Fieldwork Ecological Services Ltd.                                                                                                                                     

For ST, congratulations go to Jonathan Hibbert for his consultancy with Bournemouth Borough Council, and to Richard Gordon for his consultancy with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.  Good luck to Stephen Page and Adam Blake for their contract to the European Commission, and to Heather Hartwell for her application to ESRC.

WAN Mentoring Event – July 10th

Facilitated by: Dr Colleen Harding, Head of Organisational and Staff Development, Tamsyn Dent, Post-Graduate Researcher, Media School

This session is aimed at:  all staff, male and female, and will be of particular interest to those who are interested in academic mentoring for women, and who are willing to be a mentor; would like to work with a mentor; or who support staff who would like to engage in mentoring.  

When: July 10th 13:00 – 16:30

Where: The Octagon

The purpose of the event is to provide an opportunity for the Women’s Academic Network to:

  • Discuss the benefits of engaging in mentoring
  • Find out more about how mentoring currently works at BU
  • Consider some of the options available to set up an academic mentoring network that specifically supports the needs of female academics at BU
  • To identify the steps that we need to take in order to set up an effective mentoring network.

 By the end of the event participants will have:

  • Discussed some models of coaching and mentoring, including the findings from a doctoral study on the transitional space provided by coaching and mentoring for emerging academics
  • Discussed some of the research studies on mentoring relevant to women in academia
  • Identified the critical steps necessary to set up a mentoring network that specifically supports the needs of female academics at BU

 Register through staff development  

Latest Major Funding Opportunities

The following opportunities have been announced. Please follow the links for more information:

The BBSRC, the Technology Strategy Board and the EPSRC are to invest £45m in major integrated research and development projects through the Industrial Biotechnology Catalyst. Catalysts provide funding to innovative businesses and researchers working in priority areas with the aim of helping them to quickly turn excellent UK research into new or improved commercial processes and products. There are five types of award – early stage: translation; early stage: feasibility studies;  industrial research; late stage: pre-experimental feasibility studies; and late stage: experimental development – and, with the exception of translation awards which are academic, can involve a single business or be collaborative. Total project sizes can range from up to £250k for feasibility studies to up to £10m for experimental development. Please note that there are different closing dates for each type of award.

The ELRHA‘s Research for Health in Humanitarian Crises (R2HC) programme aims to improve health outcomes by strengthening the evidence base for public health interventions in humanitarian crises. The programme is the product of a strategic partnership between the Department for International Development (DFID) and the Wellcome Trust, with ELRHA overseeing the programme’s execution and management. R2HC’s second call for Expressions of Interests is now open, and will close on 10/07/14.  

The Leverhulme Trust Visiting Professorships are awarded to UK institutions that wish to invite an eminent researcher from overseas to enhance the knowledge and skills of academic staff or the student body within the host institution. The scheme covers maintenance, travel expenses and research costs. Visiting Professorships last for between three and twelve months. The closing date for applications is 4pm on 09/10/14.

As part of the International Exchanges scheme, the Royal Society now offers additional funding through its Kan Tong Po Fellowships. This support has been made possible through the generosity of the family of the late Mr Kan Tong Po. The purpose of this scheme is to contribute at the highest level of scientific research and education at the University of Hong Kong, Chinese University of Hong Kong, the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, the City University of Hong Kong and the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, by awarding Visiting Fellowships each year to UK or US based scientists to collaborate with a Hong Kong based academic, or for Hong Kong based scientists to collaborate with an academic based in either the UK or US. The scheme covers all areas of the life and physical sciences, including engineering, but excluding clinical medicine. Closing date 01/07/14.

The Technology Strategy Board, along with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), Invest Northern Ireland, the Scottish Funding Council and the Welsh Government, are to invest jointly up to £2.3m to establish Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) to improve the competitiveness, resilience and responsiveness of the agri-food supply chain. The aim of this initiative is to give businesses access to the UK knowledge base so that they can develop innovative solutions to global challenges facing the agri-food sector. We are looking to support up to 25 KTPs through this competition. Its scope spans primary production, including aquaculture, through to retail. This competition will provide new opportunities for open innovation and knowledge exchange across supply chains and sectors. It will help companies to mitigate commercial risk and improve business performance – and to achieve growth as a result.  The funders will also consider co-funding KTPs on an individual basis. The call closes on 11/02/15.

The Wellcome Trust invites applications for their Clinical PhD Programmes. Successful candidates will develop their potential to become academic clinicians within a structured and mentored training environment. Programmes will provide the individual trainee with opportunities to sample high-quality research environments before they develop a research proposal that is tailored to their individual interests. Please go to the website for specific programmes and their closing dates.

The Wellcome Trust Seeding Drug Discovery scheme aims to develop drug-like, small molecules that will be the springboard for further research and development by the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry in areas of unmet medical need. A two-point entry system has been introduced to enable projects at an earlier stage in development to be competitive for funding as well as to progress later-stage projects further towards clinical trials. The deadline for the preliminary application is  05/11/14 with the full proposal by invitation in May 2015.

 Please note that some funders specify a time for submission as well as a date. Please confirm this with your RKE Support Officer.

You can set up your own personalised alerts on ResearchProfessional. If you need help setting these up, just ask your School’s RKE Officer in RKE Operations or see the recent post on this topic, which includes forthcoming training dates up to November 2014.

If thinking of applying, why not add notification of your interest on ResearchProfessional’s record of the bid so that BU colleagues can see your intention to bid and contact you to collaborate.

Thursday at 9am – come along to the next RKEO coffee morning

The first RKEO coffee morning was a huge success and we’d like to continue this at our next event, this Thursday (19th June) at 9am in R303, Royal London House. We’ll be there until 10am. Come along for a pastry and an informal chat with members of the Research and Knowledge Exchange Office. We look forward to seeing you!

For your diaries, our next coffee morning is at Talbot again, in the new academic year – 30th October at 9.30am in the Retreat.

Goal Modelling for Investigating Fraud

Staff and students are invited to join us for the next Cyber Security Seminar…

‘Goal Modelling for Investigating Fraud’

Tuesday 17th June 2014

Lawrence Lecture Theatre, Talbot Campus

4pm – 5pm


Join us for this informative seminar presented by Clive Blackwell, who is currently a Research Engineer at Airbus Innovation Works.

This seminar will present a systematic process for analysing fraud using the KAOS tool, which is widely used in requirements engineering. Interestingly, Clive will analyse the case of Paul Ceglia vs Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook, where Ceglia claims 50% of Facebook supported by an alleged contract signed by Zuckerberg. Clive believes this technique could be extended to help provide a general model for fraud and also aid better analysis of the cyber security of complex systems in general.

 If you would like to join us for this presentation, please book your place via Eventbrite. We will look forward to seeing you!

Speaker Bio: Clive Blackwell is currently a Research Engineer at Airbus Innovation Works where his main research is in threat detection and modelling. Clive was formerly a Research Fellow at Oxford Brookes University between 2010 and 2013, where his main area of research was in cyber security and digital forensics with a particular interest in the development of a scientific basis for digital forensics. He has over 50 publications including two books to his name.

Brush up yer BRIAN

BRIANRKEO will be delivering some ‘Brush up yer BRIAN’ training on 19th June 2014 1pm for Media School staff and students. The session will cover:

  • What is BRIAN and why is it important
  • How to set up and maintain your BRIAN profile
  • How to ensure your details are correct
  • How to request a photo is uploaded
  • How BRIAN links to your external staff profile
  • How BRIAN data is used towards BUs KPIs

 To book on please register here.

BU Learning and Teaching Fellowship Awards now open

We are pleased to announce the opportunity to apply for the new BU Learning and Teaching Fellowship (BU L&TF) Awards is now open.

These fellowships are an opportunity to recognise staff achievements by rewarding excellence, providing support to colleagues interested in becoming National Teaching Fellows as well as acknowledging individuals who are providing an exceptional and innovative student experience,  underpinned by research and professional practice.

For more information about the Fellowships or to apply for these awards, please head to Centre for Excellence in Learning website.  The closing date for applications is Monday 21 July.

Changing diet and exercise, offering men-only groups, and humour may be the recipe for tackling male obesity

Fewer men join weight loss programmes but are more likely than women to stick with them, according to analysis of international obesity studies by researchers from the Universities of Aberdeen, Bournemouth and Stirling.

Men also prefer the use of simple ‘business-like’ language, welcome humour used sensitively, and benefit from the moral support of other men in strategies to tackle obesity. The researchers suggest that obese men might be helped better if weight loss programmes were specifically designed for men.

Researchers from the Universities of Aberdeen, Bournemouth and Stirling analysed evidence from around the world, gathered from weight loss trials and studies that have also taken men’s views. The team particularly investigated what would make services more appealing for men.

From their systematic review (see: ) of the evidence on obesity management published by the NHS National Institute for Health Research Health Technology Assessment Programme, researchers also found:


  • Cutting calories together with exercise and following advice on changing behaviour are the best way for obese men to shed pounds. This can also help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and can help improve erectile dysfunction for some men.
  • Obese men who eat less lose more weight than those who take more exercise but don’t eat less.
  • In the long term, one calorie-reducing diet has not yet been found to better than another for weight loss for men.
  • Middle-aged men are motivated to lose weight once they perceive they have a health problem they want to tackle.
  • A desire to improve personal appearance without looking too thin is also a motivator for weight loss in men.
  • Men are likely to prefer weight-loss programmes delivered by the NHS rather than those run commercially.
  • Group-based weight management programmes run only for men provide moral support.
  • Obesity interventions in sports clubs, such as football clubs, have been very effective, with low dropout rates and very positive responses from men.


Chief investigator Professor Alison Avenell, based at the University of Aberdeen, said: “More men than women are overweight or obese in the UK, but men are less likely to see their weight as a problem and engage with weight-loss services, even though obesity increases the risk of many serious illnesses such as coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes and osteoarthritis. This could be because dieting and weight-loss programmes are perceived as being feminine activities.”

“We looked at the outcomes of obesity management trials and interventions as well as interviews with men in order to find out more about how to design services and inform health policy. While more research is needed into the effectiveness of new approaches to engage men with weight-loss, our findings suggest that men should be offered the opportunity to attend weight loss programmes that are different to programmes which are mainly attended by women.”


Dr Flora Douglas, from the Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health, said: “Men prefer more factual information on how to lose weight and more emphasis on physical activity in weight loss programmes. Interventions delivered in social settings were preferred to those delivered in health-care settings.   Group-based programmes showed benefits by facilitating support for men with similar health problems, and some individual tailoring of advice helped men.  Programmes which were situated in a sporting venue, where participants had a strong sense of affiliation, showed low drop-out rates and high satisfaction.”

University of Stirling Professor Pat Hoddinott said: “Men are much less likely to enrol in commercial weight loss schemes. Some men preferred weight loss programmes delivered in an NHS context. The difference between weight loss for men from NHS and commercial programmes is presently unclear”.


Professor Edwin van Teijlingen from Bournemouth University added: “This research project has benefited throughout from the input and insights offered by the Men’s Health Forum in Ireland, the Men’s Health Forum Scotland and the Men’s Health Forum England and Wales.”

This project was funded by the National Institute for Health Research, Health Technology Assessment Programme (NIHR HTA Project 09/127/01; Systematic reviews of and integrated report on the quantitative, qualitative and economic evidence base for the management of obesity in men  The views and opinions expressed therein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Department of Health.


Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen



Latest BU midwifery research newsletter


The latest edition of the newsletter of the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health has just been published online.  The editor for the latest edition was Dr. Jen Leamon.

The latest newsletter can be found online at:


Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen


Successful BU Festival of Learning debate of media and fear in childbirth!

Yesterday saw the lively debate organised by Prof. Vanora Hundley on the motion: ‘The media is responsible for creating fear in childbirth.’


Elizabeth Duff from the NCT and HSC Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen affiliated with the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health and against the motion argued Joanne Dewberry ( ), independent blogger, journalist and successful business woman and Dr. Ann Luce from BU’s  Journalism and Communication Academic Group

The debate was part of BU’s Festival of Learning event to explore the role of the mass media in shaping such beliefs and identify whether media portrayals are responsible for rising rates of intervention.  The audience voted in favour of the motion, but the media team managed to get some people to reconsider their views on the impact of the mass media on women’s view of childbirth.

Professors Vanora Hundley and Edwin van Teijlingen


Upcoming seminar from Dr Terry Haines, Monash University, Australia


Dr Terry Haines from Melbourne will be in London for a conference and has offered to visit BU on Tuesday 8th July.

He will give a presentation at 2pm in TA134, Talbot campus, entitled:

“Researching health services that have an absence of evidence but are already a part of standard care”.

Terry is a distinguished researcher, with a physio / economics background, expertise in both quali and quant methods, and has 17 PhD students doing work around inpatient falls prevention as well as a variety of other topics.

You can view his profile and long list of publications here:

I highly recommend him to you and so do please put the date in your diary and spread the word.

If you are able to attend the presentation at 2pm and / or would like to meet Terry for an informal discussion about potential research collaborations, etc., then do please email Samuel Nyman at

Samuel Nyman

BUDI & Psychology Dept, SciTech

Latest Major Funding Opportunities

Success signThe following opportunities have been announced. Please follow the links for more information:

Do you have BBSRC funding? Then think about the Standard Follow-on funding programme which is designed to support the translation of fundamental research funded by them into practical application, including commercialisation. The aim of the programme is to help researchers maximise the societal and economic benefits of their research. This programme is a proof-of-concept model where further work on an idea will take it through to the stage at which the route to application is clear, which may include a spin-out or licensing opportunity. The programme enables activities essential to preparing a robust business plan and secure, where appropriate, further funding and support to progress. Standard Follow-on Fund (FOF) provides for projects up to 12 months in duration and valued at under £250k (80% FEC). Super Follow-on funding is available by invitation only. Closing date: 25/06/14.

Are you thinking about applying for a Leverhulme International Academic Fellowship.  These provide established researchers with a concentrated period based in one or more research centres outside the UK. The intention of the scheme is to provide opportunities to develop new knowledge, skills and ideas. Or you may be considering a Research Fellowship, open to experienced researchers, particularly those who are or have been prevented by routine duties from completing a programme of original research. Click on the links to read about the previous calls as you prepare to apply for the next round, which is due to be announced in early November 2014.

The MRC Public Health Intervention Development scheme (PHIND) supports the early stages of development of public health interventions. Studies funded by the scheme will develop a solid theoretical framework and generate evidence on the design specification and feasibility of the intervention. Essential knowledge obtained from these preliminary studies will provide the foundation for future pilot testing and evaluation, with the ultimate aim of improving the effectiveness of public health interventions. Applicants can apply for up to £150K for a maximum of 18 months. Closing date: 12/09/14 and 30/01/15 by 4pm. 

The MRC, through the MRC-NIHR Methodology Research Programme (MRP), wishes to develop a portfolio of research aimed at improving the methodology underpinning the application and evaluation of Methodology underpinning patient reported outcome measures (PROMs) in health research and health care decision making. PROMs are an assessment of health status and health-related quality of life that comes directly from the patient. Lord Darzi’s NHS Next Stage Review indicates that they will be increasingly used in the evaluation of health care technologies and healthcare services, and they also contribute to regulatory decision making. Ensuring the validity and robustness of PROMs is therefore vital in enabling these measures to have maximum impact on research outcomes and health care decision making. This call will open on 08/10/14 with a closing date of 4pm on 19/11/14.

The MRC, through the MRC-NIHR Methodology Research Programme (MRP), wishes to fund high quality methods development research to support the use and evaluation of complex interventions in health research. The MRC has long recognised the unique methodological challenges posed by the development and evaluation of complex interventions and has championed the development of guidance both for researchers and research funders. The MRP therefore invites any high quality proposal which through generalisable methods development research seeks to strengthen the knowledge base or evaluation of the impact of complex interventions in health research. The MRP Panel is particularly keen to support applications for methods research which focus on: behavioural change interventions, psychological interventions and natural experiments i.e. assessments of policy interventions on health. This call will open on 08/10/14 with a closing date of 4pm on 19/11/14.

Following the first phase of the Multidisciplinary Synthetic Biology Research Centres (SBRCs) call in 2013, which established three SBRCs; the RCUK Synthetic Biology Working Group, and BBSRC and EPSRC have announced their call for proposals to the second phase. The SBRCs must focus on strategic areas relevant to one or more key industrial sectors that could include: fine and speciality chemicals; life science technologies; energy; environment; sensors (including diagnostics); agriculture and food; medicines and healthcare. Closing date: 24/07/14.

NERC, in collaboration with the BBSRC and the AHRC, organise internship placements for current NERC, BBSRC and AHRC funded PhD students to work in one of eight host organisations on a policy topic relevant to both the student and the host. The student will be expected to produce a briefing paper, participate in a policy inquiry and/or organise a policy event. Internships are awarded to both parliamentary and non-parliamentary organisations. Information on current host organisations can be found on the website. Internships are available to all current NERC, BBSRC and AHRC funded PhD students and the internship must start before the end of the funded period of the studentship. Closing date 4pm on 18/08/14

The Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award is for outstanding scientists who would benefit from a five year salary enhancement to help recruit them to or retain them in the UK. The scheme provides up to 5 years’ funding after which the award holder continues with the permanent post at the host university.The focus of the award is a salary enhancement, usually in the range of £10,000 to £30,000 per annum. Closing date: 08/07/14.

The Wellcome Trust currently support 31 Programmes based in centres of excellence throughout the UK with specialised training provided in a range of important biomedical research areas. The Biomedical PhD Studentship scheme provides support for four years and includes: a stipend, PhD registration fees at UK/EU student rate, contribution towards laboratory rotation expenses in the first year, research expenses for years two to four, contribution towards travel and a contribution towards transferable-skills training. Students are recruited annually by the individual Programmes for uptake in October each year. Recruitment begins in the preceding December. Alternatively, further funding is available from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute.

Please note that some funders specify a time for submission as well as a date. Please confirm this with your RKE Support Officer.

You can set up your own personalised alerts on ResearchProfessional. If you need help setting these up, just ask your School’s RKE Officer in RKE Operations or see the recent post on this topic, which includes forthcoming training dates up to November 2014.

If thinking of applying, why not add notification of your interest on ResearchProfessional’s record of the bid so that BU colleagues can see your intention to bid and contact you to collaborate.

CEMP Research Bulletin

Here is the updated CEMP research bulletin:  CEMP bulletin June July 2014

Please contact Julian or Richard in CEMP or one of the CEMP Fellows:

Media School – Ashley Woodfall, Neal White, Richard Wallis, Anna Feigenbaum

CEL / cross-BU – Milena Bobeva

…. if you are interested in any of the funding opportunities here, or have other ideas for collaborative projects with CEMP.

“Handsome young men and shoes I’ll never wear”

Lots of ‘creativity’ in academia to report, at least according to two articles in recent international blogs.

The Creativity Post reports a playful interchange between Kip Jones (RUFUS STONE) and Patricia Leavy (Method Meets Art). Each scholar asked the other 20 Questions. The only requirement was NOT to talk about their work. In an article written by Jones and Leavy elsewhere (The Qualitative Report), Jones advises ‘not to live and work in silos, but let all parts of your lives flow in and out of each other’. In this spirit, Leavy and Jones discuss the personal in the Creative Post article and how it contributes to their innovative endeavors.

In another article in the Creative Quarter, Jones is interviewed by Bournemouth University  Media School’s Trevor Hearing about the making of the research-based, award-winning short biopic, RUFUS STONE. Jones admits that here too the personal became central to solidifying the characters for the film and how auto-ethnography played a role in creating the story.

Those with an interest in ARTS in Research (AiR) are welcome to join the collaboration now forming across Schools at BU. Both faculty and postgrad students welcome!  More information or contact Kip Jones.

Delphi comes to Leipzig via BU

Delphi method is an unsung qualitative research technique used for investigating complex issues. It was the subject of one of The Media School’s Prof Tom Watson’s teaching actions during his Erasmus visit to Leipzig University in Germany last week.

He was hosted by Prof Gunter Bentele and Prof Ansgar Zerfass of the university’s Communication Management Research Institute (Instituts KMW), who are also co-researchers with him.

“Delphi method has been little used in PR and Communication Management research. So this was an opportunity to present it to a group of Early Career Researchers and PhD students,” said Prof Watson who used it for an international study of PR research priorities in 2007/08.

He is hopeful that Delphi method, which draws its name from the oracle of Delphi as it is used for forecasting and policy creation, will be more widely used at both universities. “It gets very rich results amongst practitioners and from international experts.”

Other actions during Prof Watson’s Erasmus visit, supported by the British Council and a FIF SMN selection, were two seminars to Masters students on PR history and PR measurement as well as mentoring meetings with PhD students.

Leipzig University has been an Erasmus partner of BU for the past four years. It has one of Europe’s leading communication management and PR research teams, with an international reputation. Professors Bentele and Zerfass have both visited BU under the Erasmus banner. Students have also come from Leipzig to BU for six months’ study on the MA Public Relations.

“As well as being where J.S. Bach composed his music in the Thomaskirche (St Thomas’s Church) in the 18th century, the venue of the annual World Goth Festival and a charming city centre , Leipzig is a top university which started in 1409″, said Prof Watson. “There is great potential to further develop our relationship with it and its very welcoming staff.”

Thomaskirche, Leipzig, where J.S. Bach composed most of his music


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