The Bournemouth chapter of the University of the Third Age (U3A) are seeking a speaker for their monthly meetings. Talks can be around anything, although they’ve requested nothing overly controversial, and will need to be 45 minutes to an hour including 15 minutes for questions. If you’d be interested in speaking then please email me – firstname.lastname@example.org with a brief summary of what you’d like to talk about. I’ll forward all names and descriptions I receive by Thursday 8th Dec at 4pm onto their chapter lead for her to select which talks they would like.
The U3A is a fantastically engaged audience and this is a great opportunity to get involved in some public engagement with a ready made audience.
This morning (Wednesday 19 October) I’m basing myself in the cafe area on the ground floor of Fusion to answer all your Festival of Learning questions. If you’ve got an event idea you want to discuss, or want help writing your application come along and say hello. I’ll be here 11am-12pm.
To find out more, including when future drop in sessions are taking place have a look at this blog post. To submit your Festival event take a look at the guidance available here on the staff intranet.
I’m looking to have as many academics and students feed into how we support and grow public engagement at BU. We’re using the EDGE tool, a series of questions used nationally by different universities, to plot BU’s current position on a series of different aspects of public engagement support. Using the results of this survey we want to review how we’re doing and reevaluate the support we give to make it better for academics and students wanting to engage the public in their research. Take 5 minutes to fill in this short survey and have your say on the future of public engagement at BU. Enter your email at the end and you could win £50 worth of Amazon vouchers!
Public Engagement can be extremely rewarding, beneficial for your professional development, and judging by the recommendations from the Stern review it’s going to be a great source of impact for the next REF, but is your time being invested in it in the best way? According to this recent blog post by Steven Hill, Head of Research Policy for HEFCE if you want to be using public engagement to generate impact, the key is public involvement in the research. Find out more here.
Bournemouth University Festival of Learning 2016
I’m looking to get as many students and staff members at BU (both academic and professional services) to complete our annual public engagement survey. Public engagement is about two way interaction with the public to generate mutual benefit, for example running a Festival of Learning event to share research outcomes, consulting with a public panel about where research is needed, or running a project in collaboration with a community partner. It has lots of great benefits for researchers, the community, and the university, and because of this, I want to make sure we’re doing it in the best way possible. This survey aims to understand our current strengths as an engaged university and identify areas that we can improve on using the National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement’s EDGE tool. It takes between 5 and 10 minutes to complete, and if you leave your email address at the end you’ll be entered into a prize draw with the chance to win a £50 Amazon voucher.
Complete the survey here
Last week we welcomed 35 members of the public into the EBC for an afternoon of conversation around conservation! We welcomed 5 different speakers including 3 academics and 2 post docs from the Faculty of Science and Technology to share their research through a series of presentations and Q&As.
Amanda Korstjen’s opened the event with a talk about her work in tropical forests supporting conservation of primates before Demetra Andreou took over to share how we can use DNA to inform conservation, for example through identifying species of fish present in a river through water samples. We then took a short break for some cake (a key part of any RKEO organised event) before Liz Franklin took over to share her work on pollinators and giving advise on how to make your gardens more bee friendly and speaking on how consideration of pollinators should be a key part of urban planting spaces. We finished off the day with two talks about local conservation in Poole Harbour including Ann Thornton talking on how thickening algal mats are impacting wading birds and Leo Clark sharing his research into the impact of shellfish harvesting on the area.
The day was a great success with highly positive feedback from the audience on the topic. Thank you to all involved for giving such excellent talks.
If you’d like to take part in a future lecture day email email@example.com
Many of you may be interested to see the Royal Society have just launched a series of public engagement training workshops over the next year.
Introduction to public engagement
Monday 17 October 2016 and Tuesday 31 January 2017
A course is for those with little or no experience aiming to provide you with the tools to get started
Public engagement practice
Thursday 10 November 2016
A course for those with some experience that will demonstrate how to create research-led projects that meet engagement aims.
Engaging with schools
Thursday 2 March 2017
A course for those scientists with some experience that will enable researchers to create effective engagement projects in schools.
Click on any of the above links to find out more about the courses
The National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement’s fantastic Engage conference will be held in Bristol on 29th & 30th November.
They are looking for workshops, interactive experiences, dialogue events, performances, and conversations that catalyse new ways of thinking. Contributions can either be formatted as a 1 hour workshop or a 10 minute interactive contribution, and should contribute to one or more of the following themes:
- Culture change: creating a culture where engagement is valued and supported
- Effective practice: sharing insights into high quality engagement practice
- Engaged research: creating impactful research
- Engaged students: the role of engagement within teaching and learning
- New ideas: taking our thinking forward about the role of engagement within higher education
The deadline for submissions is Tuesday 13th September.
Find out more and apply online here
The NCCPE’s Engage conference will be running 29th/ 30th November 2016 and they’re currently looking for content under the following key themes:
• Culture change: creating a culture where engagement is valued and supported
• Effective practice: sharing insights into high quality engagement practice
• Engaged research: creating impactful research
• Engaged students: the role of engagement within teaching and learning
• New ideas: taking our thinking forward about the role of engagement within higher education
If you think you could offer something take a look at the full call here and contact Naomi Kay in RKEO if you would like financial support to fund travel/ accommodation for the conference.
Over the past month or two the Knowledge Exchange and Impact Team (KEIT) have had quite a few successes we’re #BUProud of so we thought we’d share them.
Firstly we’re delighted that HEIF5+1 has been extended to HEIF5+1+1 and that there will be a further 12 projects funded until August 2017 – to find out more take a look at Jayne’s post about it here
In case you haven’t spotted it Rachel has also been working hard with the PR team to do some comms around our Olympic themed research. This content was shared internally, externally & on social media and had some good engagement which led to Bryce Dyer and Osman Ahmed being interviewed on Wave 105 & Tim Rees being featured in the Independent.
She’s also been working with Alex Wardrop to have her research on how to improve access to higher education featured in Times Higher.
Thanks to Charlene’s hard work the Student Project Bank is almost up and running! We will be launching to students in October and are planning a pilot event for September/October – more information to follow soon!
I’ve also been working hard with Genna to finish the wash up report for Festival of Learning and we’re pleased to say that event with less events we still had over 4,500 visits over the course of 5 days compared to 5,000 over a week with an additional 50 activities in 2015. We’re already planning madly for next year when we’ll be running FoL from 8-12th July, mark the date in your diary and start thinking of your event ideas!
We’re also hugely proud to announce we’ve launched our impact toolkit aiming at supporting the academic community to develop and record impactful research. This is available here on the blog and contains helpful tips and examples of case studies. There is also a handy mini-guide available in a printed format floating around the campus or available from anyone in the team.
Finally we’re very pleased to greet our two newest members of the team, Joanna Pawlik and Hannah Jones who will be working as the Event Coordinator/ Student Engagement Coordinator (respectively) for the next 12 months.
We recently headed down to a very sunny Boscombe for a day spent talking about science as part of their bustling Saturday market. Pitching up in between two amazingly fragrant food stands we spent the day talking to the community about two research projects with the potential to change lives as part of a British Science Association and Royal Society of Chemistry series of events known as Science in the City.
The idea of Science in the City has been to take science into highly deprived communities and talk to people about research who wouldn’t usually engage with us through events such as Festival of Learning. Working with University of Southampton (UoS) we submitted the bid in December 2015 and were successful in being picked to host an activity as part of the 2016 round of funding and approached Boscombe Market for a venue to let us talk to the community.
Keen to take the opportunity to share some of our high profile research we were especially pleased to be joined by Oleg Fryazinov and Mark Moseley who have been highly involved with the award winning SHIVA project which enables disabled children to design and 3D print objects using a simple interactive system that can be controlled using either touch or eye tracking software. This project has recently received funding through HEIF5+1+1 to expand the project further and work with new schools. Currently they are working closely with the Victoria School in Poole and may of the objects seen in the image below where designed by their students (unfortunately not the dinosaur as the software isn’t quite up to this yet!).
As well as BU’s research we also took an activity from UoS’s public engagement Roadshow. David and Alex, two PHD researchers from the university joined us for the day to talk to people about the technology behind hydrogen fuel cells and how they have the power to revolutionise our lives and minimise the amount of unclean energy needed to run our cars, buses and lorries. As well as a demonstration of the fuel cell in action they also were helping the public understand how catalysts could be used to reduce the amount of energy you need to put into a reaction and how coating a cheap substance (in our case copper pennies) with a catalytic material (a brass coating made by coating the penny in zinc and heating to produce an alloy) can reduce the costs involved with using them.
I’m hosting an afternoon of lectures on Wednesday 14 September to give BU academics the chance to share their research with members of the University of the Third Age (U3A).
Talks are usually around an hour including a good amount of time for questions. We usually have around 20 – 30 in the audience for these events. In particular this time they have asked to hear talks around a theme of conservation or nature so I’m especially keen to hear from you in you work in that area.
If you’d like to know more, or may be interested in speaking please drop me an email – firstname.lastname@example.org.
An opportunity has come up for BU staff and students to take their research to Countryfile Live, taking place at Blenheim Palave 4-7 August 2016. Travel and expenses will be covered by BU and you can either do all four days or just go for two.
For further information about the event take a look at their website, and if you’d be interested in taking your research, email email@example.com . We will be attending alongside other universities so this is an excellent networking opportunity, as well as an opportunity to talk to the public about your research.
The themes of the event are around conservation, wildlife and agriculture so research around these areas would be especially relevant.
The Economic and Social Research Council’s (ESRC) Festival of Social Science returns for 2016 and BU will again be hosting events as a partner institution. This means students and staff from BU who wish to run events will be invited to submit their applications for event directly to us, rather than going through the national competitive process. Applications will be judged by an internal panel who will decide which events will run, and additionally the amount of funding they will be awarded.
What is the ESRC Festival of Social Science?
The festival is an annual event, this year running from 5 – 12 November, that celebrates social science and provides an insight into some of the country’s leading research and how that impacts our social, economic and political lives. Events can be almost anything, just a few examples from previous years have included: public debates, lectures, exhibitions (both physical and virtual), film screenings and interactive workshops.
Find out more here and take a look at national past events here
What information should I be aware of whilst developing the concept for my event and completing my application?
The ESRC’s website provides a wealth of information for potential event organisers. In particular you should read the applicant guidelines before submitting your application as we will only accept events that abide by these conditions. Especially important to note are the restrictions on funding as this year the maximum amount that can be awarded to events is £,1000. This is lower than previous years and is not a specific restriction based on BU, but a condition for all applications.
Additionally the information contained in this Event Organisers Guide may also be of interest to you.
How do I apply to run my event?
In order to apply to run your event, please download our application form from the I-drive – I:\R&KEO\Public\ESRC Festival of Social Science Applications and return it to FestivalofSocialScience@bournemouth.ac.uk before 4pm Friday 20 May. If you do not have access to the I-drive (for example if you’re working off site) then please email us to request a copy of the form.
To discuss your event idea and how to maximise engagement with your research feel free to email me – Naomi Kay, Public Engagement Officer.
I’m looking for PGR’s or Academics who would be interested to take their research up to Glastonbury Festival this June as part of an interactive Science tent. The tent is based in the Green Fields so a sustainability theme is preferable for your activity. To find out more drop me an email before midday Thursday 28th April with some brief details of what you’re research is about and the type of activity you might like to run – happy to work with you to develop ideas and there is a small budget available to support this. All expenses will be covered and there is plenty of time in the evenings to explore the excitement of the festival.
Something to note is Glastonbury Festival runs from the 22nd – 26th June and you will likely need to be there from the 21st – 27th June. If you are taking part in the Festival of Learning please check there isn’t a diary clash with your scheduled event.
I have to let other institutions know if we want the space by Thursday or we’ll lose the opportunity.
Canada Science and Technology Museums Corporation have just released a statement announcing they will be making their data freely available to both researchers and the public via a new platform called Open Heritage.
Read more via research professional here
To see more of these articles join the institutional public engagement group on Research Professional and receive weekly updates about news and funding for public engagement to your inbox – contact your funding development officer for more details on how to use Research Professional
One of several peppers grown from a seedling from last years event!
If you’re looking for something to do with the family next weekend then look no further than the Bournemouth Natural Science Societies Open Day, running at 39 Christchurch Road from 10am – 4pm. Among the many things to do, you’ll also find the Festival of Learning team who will be there with Dr Dorothy Fox of the Faculty of Management, and Jennifer Mark and Paul Evans, PGRs from the Faculty of Science and Technology. We’ll be running several activities to tell people about the impact of our society on soils across the globe, as well as helping children understand what difference soil acidity makes to different plants and giving people the opportunity to plant their own seeds to take away and nurture.
Unfortunately our planned event for April’s Cafe Scientifique has not been able to go ahead. This means we have an open slot for April and we’re looking for a speaker who could step in for us – if you think you’d be interested please drop me an email for further information. This is a great opportunity to speak at Cafe Scientifique as our next available slot to give a talk is quite a few months down the line.
In case you’re not familiar with Cafe Scientifique, it’s a place where, for the price of a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, anyone can come to explore the latest ideas in science and technology. Speakers give a short presentation around a topic (roughly 30 minutes), before engaging in debate and discussion with the audience to really explore the issues. It takes place at Cafe Boscanova in Boscombe on the first Tuesday of every month from 7:30-9pm and we usually have around 20-30 people in attendance. Previous talks and more information about Cafe Sci can be found on our website.