I recently had the opportunity to apply for a grant as principal investigator. The reason for writing this post today is to say thanks to everyone involved, including the RKEO staff, the Co-investigators (Paula Callus in particular), the partner institutions but also all colleagues who gave us suggestions, supporting and helping also if not involved (Isabella Rega and Richard Berger were some of these).
On reflection, I would have done all of it differently. More time was needed (possibly not when on Annual Leave and not night time), partners need to be in place well before the call is out, reference letters cannot be asked for last minute, etc. I made all (or almost all) the mistakes above, but I had a very clear idea about the project and I felt surrounded by enthusiastic colleagues who were happy to share their expertise with me. I now know I have still a lot to learn and I can’t wait for the next opportunity.
A good point was to take notes which will be used for next grant applications. Somehow it does not matter if we will get the funding at this first attempt, we are looking forward to improving the application and the project itself, which will require more research. Yes, applying for grants is not a boring task, there is a lot of research involved which brings new ideas and opens up opportunities, whether you get the funding or not.
I hope this post will be read as a positive gentle push to apply for grants and not only because it’s the Institution in need of more grants applications but because the process itself is incredibly enriching. I hope my colleagues enjoy their future grant applications as much as I did.
“Relationship between teaching and research is amongst the most intellectually tangled, managerially complex and politically contentious issues in mass higher education system” (P.Scott 2005)
||I had the opportunity to organise a research dissemination event for our Digital Media Design Undergraduate students, opening the event to MA and PhD students. Different topics were presented with touching points of debates centred on “Arts design practice and politics of digital media. Dr. Veronica Barassi (Goldsmith), Paula Callus (BU) and Dr. Daniel Ploeger (Royal Central, School of Speech and Drama) were invited to present their research in front of undergraduate students, master and PhD students; as result a kaleidoscopic afternoon spent with our students, unfolded a common ground both in methodology and critical approach. Looking at media from cultural studies, anthropologic and artistic point of views was of great help to empower students’ willingness to create cultural links to their practice but also to feel part of an active and critic citizenship where a global culture is promoted continuously.
We are all aware that research and teaching are often resolved into separate domains competing for time, resources and space.
On the other side embedding research into Undergraduate curriculum, shows greater involvement of the students, deeper understanding through inquiry-led learning.
A connection of research and teaching in academic work, makes university education distinctive and the potential to generate additional research output and new knowledge as well as the creation and strengthen pathways towards postgraduate research become incredibly natural (Giller 2011). Additionally I would mention the bidirectional sense of “gratitude” that derives from a learning experience when integrated into the culture of sharing knowledge.