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Research Professional – all you need to know

Every BU academic has a Research Professional account which delivers weekly emails detailing funding opportunities in their broad subject area. To really make the most of your Research Professional account, you should tailor it further by establishing additional alerts based on your specific area of expertise. The Funding Development Team Officers can assist you with this, if required.

Research Professional have created several guides to help introduce users to Research Professional. These can be downloaded here.

Quick Start Guide: Explains to users their first steps with the website, from creating an account to searching for content and setting up email alerts, all in the space of a single page.

User Guide: More detailed information covering all the key aspects of using Research Professional.

Administrator Guide: A detailed description of the administrator functionality.

In addition to the above, there are a set of 2-3 minute videos online, designed to take a user through all the key features of Research Professional. To access the videos, please use the following link: http://www.youtube.com/researchprofessional

Research Professional are running a series of online training broadcasts aimed at introducing users to the basics of creating and configuring their accounts on Research Professional. They are holding two monthly sessions, covering everything you need to get started with Research Professional. The broadcast sessions will run for no more than 60 minutes, with the opportunity to ask questions via text chat. Each session will cover:

  • Self registration and logging in
  • Building searches
  • Setting personalised alerts
  • Saving and bookmarking items
  • Subscribing to news alerts
  • Configuring your personal profile

Each session will run between 10.00am and 11.00am (UK) on the second Tuesday of every other month. You can register here for your preferred date:

12th July 2022

13th September 2022

8th November 2022

These are free and comprehensive training sessions and so this is a good opportunity to get to grips with how Research Professional can work for you. Previous recordings can be found here if you can’t attend a session.

Have you noticed the pink box on the BU Research Blog homepage?

By clicking on this box, on the left of the Research Blog home page just under the text ‘Funding Opportunities‘, you access a Research Professional real-time search of the calls announced by the Major UK Funders. Use this feature to stay up to date with funding calls. Please note that you will have to be on campus or connecting to your desktop via our VPN to fully access this service.

Reminder – Spotlight on Future Leaders Fellowships TODAY

The RDS Funding Development Briefings occur weekly, on a Wednesday at 12 noon.

Each session covers the latest major funding opportunities, followed by a brief Q&A session. Some sessions also include a spotlight on a particular funding opportunity of strategic importance to BU.

Today, Wednesday 29th June, there will be a spotlight on the UKRI Future Leader Fellowships. 

We will cover:

  • Overview
  • Internal process
  • Q & A

For those unable to attend, the session will be recorded and shared on Brightspace here.

Please join the briefing by clicking the link below.

Click here to join the meeting

Raising Awareness: Menopause & the Workplace Research Findings

As the current UCU Equality Officer, I’d like to share some recent research (2022) on menopause and the workplace, which is presented by the Fawcett Society*. The research (see: https://www.fawcettsociety.org.uk/Handlers/Download.ashx?IDMF=9672cf45-5f13-4b69-8882-1e5e643ac8a6) follows on from the C4 documentary ‘Davina McCall: Sex, Mind and the Menopause’ commissioned by Finestripe Productions.

This televised popular cultural representation raised awareness of the menopause. Additionally, Finestripe commissioned Savanta ComRes to conduct a  survey of 4,014 UK women aged 45-55 who are currently or have previously experienced the perimenopause or the menopause. The Fawcett Society, who were involved in the research design, acknowledge their gratitude “to Channel 4 and to Finestripe for enabling us to use that data in this report. We are also grateful to The Wates Group (a construction company), without whose sponsorship this report could not have been produced.”

Key findings from the research are as follows:

  • 77% of women experience one or more symptoms they describe as ‘very difficult’. 69% say they experience difficulties with anxiety or depression due to menopause, 84% experience trouble sleeping and 73% experience brain fog.
  • More women described difficulty sleeping and brain fog as being ‘difficult’ or ‘very difficult’ than hot flushes or night sweats (70%).
  • 44% of women said their ability to work had been affected, comprising 18% of women who said that their symptoms currently affected their ability to do their jobs, and 26% in the past. 61% said that they had lost motivation at work due to their symptoms, and 52% said they had lost confidence.
  • One in ten women who have been employed during the menopause have left work due to menopause symptoms. Mapped on to the UK population that would represent an estimated 333,000 women leaving their jobs due to the menopause. 14% of women had reduced their hours at work, 14% had gone part-time, and 8% had not applied for promotion.
  • Disabled women are affected more by menopause symptoms. 22% said they had left a job due to menopause symptoms, compared to 9% of non-disabled women.
  • Severe symptoms are worse for working class women. 44% of women described three or more symptoms as ‘very difficult’, and women in a household where the main earner works in semi-skilled or unskilled manual work were more likely than those where they work in managerial roles to have difficulty with physical and psychological symptoms.
  • The taboo around menopause extends to sick notes. 26% of women who have been employed during the menopause had taken time off work due to their symptoms, but just 30% of them gave menopause as the main reason on their sick note. Working class women were even less likely to cite the real reason.
  • Employers are not taking action to support most menopausal women. There is consistent evidence that a mix of appropriate interventions by employers can support women: culture change, training, advice on menopause, adapting absence policies, flexible work, and environmental changes.But for each of these, eight out of ten women in our survey said their employer had not put them in place. When they do, women say that they are helpful.
  • Women are not approaching their GP surgery about the menopause. Just 55% of women said they had talked to someone at their practice, while 45% said they had not. Even among women with five or more severe symptoms, 29% had not spoken to anyone at their GP practice about menopause.
  • Women overall said their GPs appeared knowledgeable about menopause. 67% of menopausal women who did speak to their GP agreed that their healthcare professionals seemed well informed about the menopause.

At the end of October 2021, the UK Government issued a Press Release (see: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/more-support-for-women-experiencing-the-menopause) outlining action for a Menopause Taskforce to better support women experiencing the menopause. The Task force will be co-chaired by the Minister for Women’s Health and Carolyn Harris MP and aims to address the role of education, training and workplace policies. The Civil Service will be involved in developing workplace menopause policy to ensure women can continue to work to their full potential.

At BU, we have Menopause Guidelines (see: https://staffintranet.bournemouth.ac.uk/workingatbu/healthsafetywellbeing/hsfire/menopause/) for members of staff and managers, which states that: “Research shows that the majority of women are unwilling to discuss menopause-related health problems with their line manager, nor ask for the support or adjustments that they may need”

One of the aims of the BU guidelines is to: “Foster an environment in which colleagues can openly and comfortably instigate conversations, or engage in discussions about menopause“.

Hopefully, existing menopause and workplace research findings, accompanied by policy reform, will impact change in the workplace and make menopause easier to talk about and support.

The TUC also have an informative and useful menopause toolkit: https://www.tuc.org.uk/sites/default/files/Menopause%20toolkit%20Eng%20FINAL.pdf

*The Fawcett Society is a UK charity, established in 1866; campaigns for women’s rights

Research Facilitator focus change – 1st August 2022

Exciting changes are coming to you from August 2022 in terms of the support provided by RDS’ Research Facilitators.

As agreed at the December 2021 Research Performance and Management Committee, the focus of the Research Facilitators will change from Faculty-facing to funder specialisms, based on the major funders. The current post titles will change to ‘Research Facilitator for…’ and the contacts for each post are detailed below:

The focus of the Research Facilitator support will remain largely unchanged, which is:

  • to identify potential funding opportunities through horizon scanning and cascade these across BU via the weekly funder briefings
  • to provide support to researchers within the Research Facilitators funder specialisms, to develop their bids through building research teams (including external collaborators as well as inter/multi-disciplinary teams within BU)
  • to advise on bid content and structure to ensure a high-quality bid is submitted to external funders.

Support for all other types of bids/funders will be provided through Faculty Leadership and Research Mentors.

The change to funder specialisms will mean that we can provide support to a larger number of academics through funder focussed briefings, scramble events, STEAMLabs (to form interdisciplinary ideas linked with external collaborators), and training through the RKEDF. We have already started transitioning to funder-focussed training this academic year, and these opportunities will also be available next academic year.

In addition to Research Facilitators, there are several support options in place to support you through the pre-award process and finding funding opportunities tailored to you. BU have invested in Research Professional, which enables you to target opportunities specifically for your research area. If you are new to Research Professional, this link provides you with help guides and bi-monthly webinars to help you get started. In addition, weekly funder briefings will continue this academic year, and the programme for 2022/23 will ensure a greater focus on specific opportunities each week. We will also be trialling a user-friendly ‘funding opportunities’ newsletter shortly.

More information will be communicated in July to help you navigate the pre-award process. Further communications will outline the changes leading up to August 2022. Stay tuned!

Research Ethics Panel meetings in August

Research EthicsA Reminder for Staff and Postgraduate Researchers

There are NO Research Ethics Panel (REP) meetings held during August, so if you’re hoping to start data collection activities over the summer and are in the process of completing your research ethics checklist, please keep this in mind when planning your research activities and submit your checklist in time for the final REP meetings to be held in July.  Checklists received during August which need to be reviewed by a full Panel will be deferred until September (dates to be advised).

REPs review all staff projects and postgraduate research projects which have been identified as high risk through the online ethics checklist.  Details on what constitutes high risk can be found on the research governance, research ethics & integrity website.

There are two central REPs:

  • Science, Technology & Health
  • Social Sciences & Humanities

Staff and PGR ‘high risk’ projects are reviewed by one of the central REPs and Researchers (including PGR Supervisors) will normally be invited to Panel for discussions.

Staff Projects which are ‘low risk’

Reviews for low risk projects will continue as normal during August (via email), although turnaround may take longer than normal due to Reviewer availability during this month.

PGR Projects which are ‘low risk’

There are no changes to the review and approval process for low risk PGR projects and reviews will continues as normal throughout August, again subject to Supervisor and the Ethics Champions availability.

More details about the review process and REP meeting dates can be found on the governance, research ethics & integrity website.  Email enquiries should be sent to researchethics@bournemouth.ac.uk.

Panel recruitment: EoI for Deputy Chair (Science, Technology & Health Panel)

Research EthicsThe closing date for Expressions of Interest is approaching soon!

Expressions of interest are invited from members of the Professoriate, for the prestigious and honorary role of Deputy Chair, Science Technology Research Ethics Panel. The central research ethics panels work across the University to champion the highest ethical standards in research undertaken by staff and students (PGR).

This document provides further information about the role and the application process. The opportunity is open to Professors and Associate Professors.

Expressions of interest should consist of a CV and brief statement outlining your suitability for the role. These should be submitted to the RDS (researchethics@bournemouth.ac.uk) by 5pm on Friday 1 July 2022.

For an informal discussion about the role please contact:

– Prof Sam Porter, Chair of the Science, Technology and Health Ethics Panel

If you have any questions regarding the process, please email Sarah Bell or Suzy Wignall by email to researchethics@bournemouth.ac.uk.

What might it be like with delivery drones flying overhead?

The E-Drone project is exploring this using virtual reality (VR) and you are invited to try this out on the Talbot Campus on the 27th and 28th June.


The project is investigating how drone logistic fleets can be successfully integrated and managed to improve customer service, reduce energy demand and also address urban traffic congestion. Part of our work involves helping stakeholders, including the general public, understand the environmental and governance implications of introducing logistics drones. The challenge is helping people envisage logistics drones when this transport future is yet to exist beyond discrete trials. This is where VR comes in.


The project team has created a VR experience to show what delivery drones will look and sound like as they fly over the Talbot Campus. We will be in the space between Dorset House and the Library on Monday 27th 1.30pm onwards and Tuesday 28th 10am onwards. We’re seeking volunteers to try the VR and provide feedback. Please join us by either dropping by or booking a slot by contacting Angela Smith (avsmith@bournemouth.ac.uk).



Vitae Conference – Career Development of Researchers

On 29th June, Vitae are visiting BU and running a series of events in one day to promote the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers.

It’s an exciting day, with sessions including:

  • An introduction to the Concordat, why it matters, and what BU is doing to engage with the agenda
  • Training for researchers on the value of professional development and how to maximise your performance
  • Training for managers of researchers on the role of professional development
  • An informal discussion about where a PhD and a post-doc position can take you career wise (spoiler alert, it’s not just a traditional academic pathway!) and networking.

The Eventbrite sign-up page can be found here – https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/vitae-conference-2022-tickets-348638736847

It’s a great opportunity for many colleagues, and we hope too a moment to consider the all round amazingness of research and to take some time to celebrate life as a researcher!

We look forward to seeing you there!  

Institute of Medical Imaging and Visualisation (IMIV) MRI Pump Priming Research Scheme Round 2 – Call Re-opens

The Institute of Medical Imaging and Visualisation (IMIV) has re-opened its call for innovative MRI research projects.

The aim of the scheme is to support projects that will lead to competitive external funding applications for MR imaging studies.  Applications are therefore required to demonstrate a clear plan for progressing preliminary studies to grant applications and larger studies.

  • All projects must have a Bournemouth University researcher as lead or co-lead applicant (see application form).
  • The IMIV MRI Pump-Priming Scheme Round 2 has a rolling 3-month window for applications, rather than a single deadline, and up to 200 hours of scanning time to be awarded in total in 2021/22.
  • There is no limit on the number of scanning hours that can be applied for, but projects applying for an award of more than 20 hours may be subject to external peer review. Awards will not cover any additional expenses related to scanning, or other aspects of the project.
  • Projects must be deliverable within 12 months, including ethical approvals. Projects with ethical approvals already in place will be prioritised.

The latest window for applications is now open, and closes on Friday 9th September 2022.

To receive the application form, please email imiv@bournemouth.ac.uk.

Registration open: NIHR Training Camp 2022 virtual event, Tuesday 5 July, 12.30 – 17.15

Dear Colleagues

The NIHR doctoral training camp is a 3 day annual face to face event providing guidance and practical experience on putting together a successful application for funding.
By attending the virtual sessions run during day 1 of the NIHR Doctoral Training Camp, you will have access to the introductory plenary talks.

The event will include presentations on:
● How to sell yourself when applying for funding
● How to sell your project when applying for funding
● Effective patient and public involvement
● What funding panels are looking for in applications

Please see flyer relating to the virtual element of the NIHR Training Camp – Virtual 2022.pptx

Registration for the free event is here: Home Page – NIHR Doctoral Research Training Camp – Virtual (cvent.com)

Please do circulate to anyone that you feel this may be useful for.

Your local branch of the NIHR RDS (Research Design Service) is based within the BU Clinical Research Unit (BUCRU)

We can help with grant applications to National peer reviewed funders. We advise on all aspects of developing an application and can review application drafts as well as put them to a mock funding panel (run by RDS South West) known as Project Review Committee, which is a fantastic opportunity for researchers to obtain a critical review of a proposed grant application before this is sent to a funding body.

Contact us as early as possible to benefit fully from the advice

Feel free to call us on 01202 961939 or send us an email.

Parliamentary Knowledge Exchange Opportunity: Thematic Research Leads

Thematic Research Leads: Climate/Environment; International Affairs/Defence; Parliament, Public Administration and Constitution | 1 August 2022

Some very exciting news from Parliament – the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), POST and Parliament’s Knowledge Exchange Unit have launched new (paid!) roles for researchers keen to be involved in policy. The new Thematic Research Leads (TRLs) are aimed at mid-career university researchers who will work for three days per week (0.6 FTE) to place research evidence at the heart of UK Parliament through a pilot thematic policy hub of parliamentary staff. Colleagues undertake this role whilst retaining their substantive academic post for the remaining two days per week.

Thematic Research Leads will work alongside POST, library and select committee staff at UK Parliament to help ensure the best available research evidence feeds into scrutiny, legislation and debate. They will also strengthen and diversify connections between Parliament and the research community. The roles are funded by ESRC, appointees are expected to commence their role in January 2023. Details:

This webpage contains more information on the Thematic Research Lead Call, the shared ambitions of POST and the ESRC for this activity, and information on how to apply.

POST state: We really encourage applications from everyone regardless of their ethnicity, race, gender, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, age, marital status or whether or not they have a disability.

Colleagues who would need flexibility or hybrid working are encouraged to apply – POST are a flexible employee, are committed to support diversity and their employees, and will consider a range of requests to support colleagues to take up a post. Deadline: 1 August 2022

BU process for this opportunity

Because this is a funded position, RDS will need to treat your application in the way we normally would for any grant bid. With a submission deadline of 1 August, we look forward to receiving the completed e-ITBs by 4 July (for the costing request please attach an outline of how often you would want to travel, as this attachment is required).

You will need your Head of Department to agree in principle that you are able to commit 0.6FTE of your time if the application is successful and that we can arrange teaching replacement and funding, so please approach them as a first step. Full internal approvals will need to be completed by 26 July.

For guidance on the process please contact Beth Steiner and for any queries relating to the positions please contact Sarah Carter.

Finally the KEU outline why you should apply for this role:

“These roles, if proven, could become highly influential prestigious roles at the heart of Parliament, somewhat akin to the Government’s Chief Scientific Advisers, but shaped for a parliamentary context. The role offers an exciting opportunity for you to see first-hand how research feeds into policy, through shaping parliamentary work with your research expertise and participating in core parliamentary processes. You will be uniquely placed to build connections with parliamentary and government stakeholders to take forward through your career, and participation will provide you with rich and varied experiences to support you on an upward professional trajectory.”

Funding Development Briefing – Spotlight on…UKRI Future Leader Fellowships

The RDS Funding Development Briefings occur weekly, on a Wednesday at 12 noon.

Each session covers the latest major funding opportunities, followed by a brief Q&A session. Some sessions also include a spotlight on a particular funding opportunity of strategic importance to BU.

Next Wednesday 29th June, there will be a spotlight on the UKRI Future Leader Fellowships. 

We will cover:

  • Overview
  • Internal process
  • Q & A

For those unable to attend, the session will be recorded and shared on Brightspace here.

Please join the briefing by clicking the link below.

Click here to join the meeting

Doctoral College Afternoon Tea at the Beach

A huge ‘Thank You’ to everyone who came along to the Afternoon Tea at the Beach, at Branksome Dene Room on 15 June.  The event was hosted by the Doctoral College for the BU postgraduate research community.

Postgraduate research students and supervisors were able to take some well-deserved time out to network and catch up in a relaxed beach location, with a sumptuous afternoon tea.  It was a perfect celebration for PGRs returning to campus post the pandemic, enhanced by a beautiful sunny day by the sea.