Posts By / Jo Garrad

UK Parliament survey – supporting diversity in academic engagement

Are you an academic researcher?

Could you help the UK Parliament understand the barriers for academics in working with them, particularly those academics from more diverse backgrounds?

NERC have created a survey – please complete the short survey now and help NERC to support as many academics as possible to engage with Parliament.

The UK Parliament is committed to working with as diverse a range of people as possible.  NERC have been working for a few years to inform and engage academic researchers in the work of Parliament through training and other activities.  NERC are aware that some groups of academics engage with Parliament more than others, and would like to find out why.

NERC have just launched an online survey about the barriers to engaging with Parliament for academics. The survey is 14 questions long and should take around 5 minutes to complete. NERC would welcome contributions from anyone with something to tell them, although they are particularly interested in hearing from academics from groups who engage less with Parliament; women, academics from BAME backgrounds and academic with disabilities.

The survey closes on Friday 18th August 2017.  The results from this survey will lead to activities focused on meeting some of the barriers identified and supporting a wider range of academics to engage with the business of Parliament.

Introducing STEAMLab

You may have heard of Sandpits in the academic environment and know what they are or even attended one.  However, we in RKEO are constantly asked ‘what’s a sandpit’, ‘does it stand for something’, ‘it doesn’t sound like it includes me’, or just a straightforward ‘I don’t get it’.

At the same time, you will have seen last week that the well known term STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) has now become STEAM, with ‘Arts’ being rightfully recognised as a vital component of research.

In true Orwellian style, we have renamed ‘Sandpits’ to the new name of ‘STEAMLab‘.  This demonstrates the purpose of the STEAMLabs as being open to all disciplines and encouraging truly interdisciplinary research ideas.  The ‘Lab’ part demonstrates the working environment that leads to the creation of novel research ideas and partnerships.  In a nutshell, the STEAMLabs offer the opportunity to meet new people from all disciplines and sectors, and to spend dedicated time developing novel ideas for research projects (as well as lots of post-its).

Four key topics have been selected for the STEAMLabs in 2017/18.  These are based around key government priorities and where the biggest pots of funding will be available.  The STEAMLab topics are:

  • Food security – 25 October 2017
  • Global Challenges – 7 February 2018
  • Industrial Challenges – 11 April 2018
  • Virtual Problems – 6 June 2018

These are broad themes to ensure that they are open to everyone from all disciplines.  If you think that they don’t include you then please have a chat with your RKEO Facilitator who can explain how your research could make a vital contribution to new ideas and approaches.  In order to encourage wider partnerships, each STEAMLab will include academics from other universities, as well as representatives from industry and other sectors.   More details will follow on each of the STEAMLabs in due course and so please watch the blog for news on how to get involved.

EPSRC New Investigator Awards to replace First Grants

EPSRC logoFrom Tuesday, 25 July 2017 a New Investigator Award scheme will replace the EPSRC’s First Grant initiative. The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) is introducing the new scheme following a recent review of First Grants, with input from advisory teams and universities.

The New Investigator Award scheme will remove some of the current restrictions and will help improve the quality and ambition of research proposals submitted, recognising that different projects and new investigators have different needs. EPSRC will continue to draw on input from advisory teams and universities to monitor and evaluate progress of the scheme.

The New Investigator Award scheme will:

  • Remove the financial value and the duration caps
  • Encourage a greater degree of university support to aid career development
  • Remove time based eligibility criteria, ensuring support for researchers who are new to leading research applications
  • Encourage panels to recommend invited resubmission and give feedback to support this more often than they would for standard grant applications

Information for current First Grant applicants:

  • EPSRC anticipates that all applicants eligible for the First Grant scheme will also be eligible for a New Investigator Award
  • The First Grants system will close at 16:00 (BST) on Monday 24 July 2017
  • Applications after this date should be made through the New Investigator Award scheme
  • First Grant applications that have not been submitted via the Je-S system after 16:00 (BST) on Monday 24 July 2017 will no longer be available

Current First Grant applicants should liaise with RKEO to ensure a copy of the application information is captured. This can then be used in New Investigator Award applications.

£100 million Rutherford Fund to attract best researchers to the UK

Universities and Science Minister Jo Johnson today (4 July 2017) confirmed the government is investing £100 million to attract highly skilled researchers to the UK through its new Ernest Rutherford Fund.

The Rutherford Fund will provide fellowships for early-career and senior researchers, from the developed world and from emerging research powerhouses such as India, China, Brazil and Mexico, helping to maintain the UK’s position as a world-leader in science and research.

View the announcement from Innovate UK to see what Jo Johnson said at the launch event.

Research and innovation is at the heart of the government’s Industrial Strategy. At the 2016 Autumn Statement, the government announced a significant increase in public research and development spending, totalling £4.7 billion. This will provide an additional £2 billion a year by 2020 to 2021 – an increase of around 20% to total government spending, and more than any increase in any Parliament since 1979.

In April 2017 the Business Secretary Greg Clark announced the creation of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) with £1 billion of support over the next 4 years. To support delivery of the ISCF, the government announced at the Spring Budget it will invest £250 million over the next 4 years to continue to build the pipeline of high-skilled research talent.

The ISCF was created to ensure research and innovation takes centre stage in the government’s Industrial Strategy, with investment earmarked for technologies where the UK can build on its world-leading strengths and help innovative businesses to tap into large and growing global markets, as well as the industries of the future.

The fund is being administered by Innovate UK and the Research Councils until the new body UK Research and Investment (UKRI) is formed in 2018. UKRI, under the leadership of its recently appointed Chief Executive Sir Mark Walport, will play a key role in strengthening the UK’s competitiveness through the Industrial Strategy.

Building resilience to natural disasters using financial instruments – Networking Event &Funding Call

Call closes: 16:00 on 26 September 2017

ESRC and UK Aid (DFID) logoNERC, the Department for International Development, and the Economic & Social Research Council invite proposals to address the topic building resilience to natural disasters using financial instruments. Funding is available to apply existing environmental and social science research to inform the design, development, refinement and validation of financing instruments to help developing countries respond and recover from extreme weather and natural disasters.

The overarching goal of these projects is to have impact on the developing world. To achieve this, projects must work with practitioner project partners who have a role in the design, development and application of innovative financing mechanisms for developing countries (eg non-governmental organisations, policymakers, disaster risk management actors, insurance companies).

NERC funding for this call will form part of the UK’s official development assistance (ODA) commitment, and proposals should demonstrate their primary purpose is to promote the economic development and welfare of countries on the Organisation for Economic Co-operation & Development’s Development Assistance Committee list of ODA recipients.

The programme will support both:

  • feasibility studies of up to £100,000 (at 100% full economic cost) and up to six months in duration
  • longer projects of up to £350,000 (at 100% full economic cost) and up to 24 months in duration.

Successful projects are expected to start no later than 1 January 2018.

If you are interested in applying to this call then please contact your RKEO Funding Development Officer in the first instance.

Networking and brokerage event

In order to bring together academics and potential project partners, a one-day networking event will be held at the Radisson Blu Portman Hotel in London on 28 July 2017. For further information and details of how to register your interest in attending this event, please see the networking event page.

Please note that attendance at this networking event is not a pre-requisite for the submission of proposals to this call.

Further information

Further information on this call and details of how to submit a proposal will be available to download shortly.

Contact

Lisa Bettington
Programme Manager – Innovation
01793 411630

EPSRC seeks applicants for strategic advisory bodies

EPSRC logoThe Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) is welcoming applications for membership of its strategic advisory bodies.

Applicants are sought from academia, industry and other stakeholders to advise the organisation on research and training strategy as members of the Strategic Advisory Teams (SATs). As well as the standard vacancies, EPSRC is looking to appoint non-academic members to each SAT team from business, industry, third sector or government organisations, whose role is focused on managing the use of academic research to deliver innovation, economic growth or societal change.

The recruitment process for SAT applications is open until 16.00hrs on Friday, 04 August, 2017. Applications will be through an online form (see below).

Appointments for SAT members will begin on Monday, 01 January, 2018, and will run for three years, with the possibility of an extension for up to a further three years. SAT members are paid a fee for each activity they are involved in, and are reimbursed for travel and subsistence expenses when attending meetings.

Commenting on what SAT membership entails, Dr Ruth Mallors-Ray OBE, Chief Operating Officer of the Aerospace Technology Institute and current Chair of EPSRC‘s Engineering SAT, said: A SAT member is an individual who, whilst a specialist in one area, is able to see beyond that specialism and act as an independent contributor to the work of the EPSRC. A SAT member listens to the work of EPSRC and then offers challenges or insights to the process of the work.

The SAT member often looks at the recommendations of EPSRC or the strategies of EPSRC and asks questions such as: how have you arrived at this recommendation? Have you been universal in your application of approach, so that the outcomes and recommendations have been arrived at through research, analysis and evidence gathering? A SAT member needs to be open to broader consensus across strategic thinking for EPSRC.

 

Research Council Policy Internships Scheme

The Research Council Policy Internships Scheme provides the opportunity for Research Council-funded PhD students to work for three months in one of a selected group of highly influential policy organisations.

Next funding opportunity:

  • Call status: Open
  • Call opening date: 19 June 2017
  • Call closing date: 10 August 2017

Summary

The Research Councils organise internships for current Research Council-funded PhD students to work at partner host organisations on one or more policy topics relevant to both the student and the host. The student will be expected to produce at least one briefing paper, participate in a policy inquiry and/or organise a policy event, or equivalent piece of work.

Internships are awarded to a number of Parliamentary Departments, Government Departments and Non-Governmental Bodies, Learned societies and other organisations.  See the RCUK site for a list of the 22 Hosting Partners for the 2017/18 competition round and application process, together with forms to be completed.

If you are interested and eligible then please contact your RKEO Funding Development Officer in the first instance.

ESRC Leadership Co-ordinator for Brexit Priority Grants, the UK in a Changing Europe

The ESRC wishes to invite proposals for a Leadership co-ordinator to provide intellectual leadership for, and to maximise the impact of the portfolio of recently commissioned 25 UK in a Changing Europe Brexit Priority Grants. In addition, the Leadership coordinator will also co-ordinate activity associated with the proposed Governance after Brexit programme and assist in scoping out additional future research activity on the longer-term impact of Brexit and other governance-related issues.

The Leadership Co-ordinator will play a vital role in:

  • Co-ordinating activities of the 25 UK in a Changing Europe (UKICE) Brexit Priority Grants, including:
    • liaising as appropriate with Brexit Priority Grant holders
    • connecting and communicating findings and outcomes with users
    • generating evidence and maximising the impact of the Grant’s policy agenda through engagement with a range of policymakers (especially government departments) and stakeholders both in the UK and internationally.
  • Supporting the activities of the UK in a Changing Europe initiative, and collaborating with the Director and Deputy Director accordingly. This will include working closely and meeting regularly with the UKICE Director.
  • Providing strategic and intellectual leadership over the ESRC’s wider research plans in the area of democracy and governance, identifying synergies as appropriate and supporting the development of a cohesive portfolio.
  • Finalising research priorities for the Governance after Brexit programme and co-ordinating activity supported through this investment.

This is a complex and fast-moving portfolio, and therefore it is anticipated that the appointment will possess senior level expertise in this area. It is anticipated that appointment will be made at the level of senior fellow. The Leadership Coordinator will also need to be based at an eligible UK Research Organisation (RO).

Application process

The maximum budget for the post is £410,000 at 100% fEC. In accordance with RCUK policy, the ESRC will contribute up to 80% of fEC.This budget is expected to cover the Leadership Coordinator’s salary costs, additional research salary costs, any support staff, as well as networking, travel, dissemination, knowledge exchange and impact activities. Applications should be submitted through the Je-S system by 16:00 on the closing date on 23 August 2017.  You will need to contact your RKEO Funding Development Officer in the first instance.

The appointment is for a fixed period of 40 months. The successful individual should take up the post on 1 December 2017.

Call documents

Contact

AHRC-ESRC-FCO Knowledge Exchange Fellowship Scheme

The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) are pleased to invite applications to the AHRC-ESRC-FCO Knowledge Exchange (KE) Fellowships scheme. The scheme will provide the opportunity for each intake of fellows to be seconded into the FCO to work alongside, advise and influence policymakers. Fellows will bring fresh thinking, depth and breadth of expert knowledge and apply their learning to policy challenges. This is not a scheme to support research projects about the FCO. It will build new capacity in the FCO and across the UK research base.

The fellowship scheme will go beyond current ad hoc arrangements, create deeper engagement between academia and policy, impact on diplomacy, increase the professional reputation of participating scholars and build long term, two way relationships. The benefits will flow to the wider academic community through fellows’ engagement with their home research organisation and wider research communities as well as through a dedicated policy seminar series hosted by the FCO during the lifetime of the scheme.

The partners anticipate supporting three-four KE Fellows working between 0.6 to 0.8 FTE for 24 months. The maximum amount available for one Fellowship will depend on individual applications. The costs will be met by the participating Research Councils. Consistent with the Research Councils’ arrangements for fEC, the AHRC and ESRC will contribute 80% of the costs and the remaining balance must be guaranteed by the Fellows’ research organisations.

How to apply

This call will be managed by the ESRC on behalf of the two participating Research Councils. In the first instance, an application should be sent as an email attachment to the ESRC on fcofellow@esrc.ac.uk by 16:00 on 31 October 2017. Applications received after this time will not be considered.

Please contact your RKEO Funding Development Officer in the first instance as all applications will need to be costed and approved by BU.

Call documents

Contacts

Research Professional – all you need to know

Research-Professional-logoEvery 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 ResearchProfessional. 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 ResearchProfessional.

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 ResearchProfessional. 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 ResearchProfessional. They are holding monthly sessions, covering everything you need to get started with ResearchProfessional. 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 fourth Tuesday of each month. You can register here for your preferred date:

25th July 2017

22nd August 2017

26th September 2017

24th October 2017

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.

ESRC-AHRC Migration Leadership Team

The ESRC and AHRC are inviting proposals for a Migration Leadership Team to provide intellectual leadership for, and maximise the impact of, their combined migration research portfolio.

This is a complex and wide-ranging portfolio, and they anticipate that the appointment will involve a collaboration of two or more individuals bringing complementary senior level expertise in this area.  The team will play a vital role in:AHRC

  • providing strategic and intellectual leadership over ESRC and AHRC’s existing migration research portfolio: mapping, curating and synthesising the portfolio in ways that should maximise potential impact on policy agendas, identifying synergies between existing investments and strategic gaps to support the development of a cohesive portfolio
  • liaising with academics working in this and related fields, connecting and communicating with users, generating evidence and maximising the impact of the portfolio’s policy agenda through engagement with a range of policymakers and stakeholders both in the UK and internationally
  • establishing and exploiting connections with other major migration research programmes and activities in Europe, in the developing world, and elsewhere
  • identifying and advising on opportunities to develop the portfolio through future interdisciplinary activities including international collaboration under the broad theme of migration.

Applications must be submitted through the Je-S system by 16:00 on 8 August 2017.

The appointment is for 24 months in the first instance with the possibility to extend beyond the initial period of funding. The successful team should take up the post on 1 November 2017.

The maximum funding available is £500,000 fEC (full economic cost). In accordance with RCUK policy, the AHRC and ESRC will contribute up to 80% of fEC. This budget is expected to cover the Leadership Team’s salary costs, additional research salary costs, any support staff, as well as networking, travel, dissemination, knowledge exchange and impact activities.

Call documents

If you are interested in applying then please contact your RKEO Funding Development Officer in the first instance.

£2,000 prize for arts and humanities research films

Academics and filmmakers are being encouraged to enter their work into the 2017 Research in Film Awards, organised by the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

The competition closes on Thursday 6 July at 16:00 hours. 

These awards are designed to recognise and reward the considerable body of work created at the interface between research and film and to acknowledge the world-leading work of researchers, practitioners and filmmakers in the arts and humanities research community.

There are five categories in total, including four aimed at the research community. These include Best Research Film of the Year, Best Doctoral or Early Career Film, Innovation Award and the International Development Award: Mobilising Global Voices. The Inspiration Award returns for the third year and offers a fantastic opportunity for members of the public to be involved while receiving recognition for their work.

The winning filmmakers in each category will receive £2,000 towards their filmmaking activities and will be honoured at an awards ceremony this November at the prestigious 195 Piccadilly in London, the home of BAFTA.

The films will be judged by a panel of academic and film industry experts, including Richard Davidson-Houston, Head of All 4, Channel Four Television, Professor Andrew Chitty, AHRC Creative Economy Champion, British film critic Antonia Quirke, and Matthew Reisz from Times Higher Education. Once again Jan Dalley, Arts Editor of the Financial Times, will chair the judging panel.

Last year, Bournemouth University’s Sue Sudbury won the Innovation Award – new approaches to storytelling in film.  You can watch the film here.

Research Professional – all you need to know

Research-Professional-logoEvery 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 ResearchProfessional. 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 ResearchProfessional.

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 ResearchProfessional. 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 ResearchProfessional. They are holding monthly sessions, covering everything you need to get started with ResearchProfessional. 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 fourth Tuesday of each month. You can register here for your preferred date:

27th June 2017

25th July 2017

22nd August 2017

26th September 2017

24th October 2017

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.

Academic Career Pathway to Research Funding – new pages

I posted last week a whizzy picture demonstrating the academic career pathway to research funding.  This has now been turned into new pages on the blog for each stage of an academics career in research.  The pages highlight the type of funding that you can aim for, what training and development is available to support this (through the RKEDF), and further resources that will support you in applying for external funding.  As well as the main summary page, there is a page for students, research fellows, senior research fellows, associate professors, and professors.

Have a look at what’s available through each stage of an academics career.  Links to these pages are also available in the Research Lifecycle – Your research strategy section and in the Research Toolkit.

If you have any queries about how to get started with your research strategy then please contact your RKEO Research Facilitator.

 

NIHR – Become a reviewer

How do I become a NIHR reviewer?

  • To comment using your professional experience apply here.
  • To comment from your experience as a patient, carer, or member of the public apply here.

Why review for the NIHR?

Professional development. Reviewing research briefs, proposals and final reports can be used as evidence of continuing professional development (CPD). Where appropriate, NIHR provide written confirmation of reviewing tasks that have been completed for inclusion in your CPD portfolio. For consultant grade medical reviewers, there is the additional attraction that peer review for NIHR is recognised in Clinical Excellence Award submissions.

Insight into the research funding process. By becoming an NIHR reviewer, you can develop a valuable insight into health research need in the NHS and the standards of successful applications for funding. NIHR only fund research of the highest scientific standard, so you can increase your insight into best practice in health research.

Make a difference. As a reviewer you can make a significant contribution to the NHS and public health by shaping research and improving practice. NIHR programmes identify the highest impact questions for UK health, so that you know the research you’re reviewing will make a real difference.

What do reviewers do?

Reviewers help the NIHR at every stage of the research process.

By identifying research topics, ensuring NIHR fund the best applications and helping to shape their open access reports published by the NIHR Journals Library, reviewers play a vital part in maintaining and improving the quality of our research.

NIHR need a wide range of expertise:

  • Academics
  • Clinicians
  • Health service managers and clinicians
  • Practitioners
  • Public health and related professionals
  • Social care sector workers
  • Patients and the Public
  • Anyone whose work has a potential impact on health.

You could play a vital part in maintaining and improving the quality of the research NIHR fund and publish.

NIHR – mental health advisor required for panel

The NIHRs  Health Technology Assessment (HTA) programme is seeking to appoint a member of the Mental, Psychological and Occupational Health (MPOH) advisory panel, one of the five Topic Identification, Development and Evaluation (TIDE) panels. These panels advise on the research agenda for the HTA programme based on the needs of the NHS. This opportunity is for a commissioner with a mental health background.

The MPOH panel focuses on therapies relating to mental health and psychological disorders at all ages including diagnosis of mental illness or cognitive deficits and learning difficulty, as well as therapies used in any aspect of occupational health.

The term of office is four years starting in May 2017. Travel and expenses will be paid.

If you have any questions about this opportunity please contact Emma Catlin at emma.catlin@nihr.ac.uk.

You will find advice on how to apply in the specification document, as well as a link to the application form and optional equal opportunities form at the top of the advisory group opportunities page.

NERC Science Board – membership vacancies

NERC is inviting applications from across the NERC science remit to join its key scientific advisory board, the Science Board (SB). NERC is seeking to recruit for up to three vacancies, to commence appointment in October 2017. SB is the key source of advice to NERC Council on science related issues.

For further information about SB and what is required to be a member, please see the document below.

Member profile and attributes (PDF, 72KB)

Further information and details of how to apply are available at: http://www.nerc.ac.uk/about/organisation/boards/science/nomination/

The closing date for applications is noon on Friday 16 June 2017.

Interviews will be held in London on Tuesday 25 July 2017.