Bournemouth University, together with a consortium of European universities and industry, has been successful in securing funding from the Interreg 2Seas Programme. The project, Smart Ports Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Development (SPEED) with an overall budget of over 4 million Euros was approved by the 2 Seas Monitoring Committee on 12th July 2018. Reza Sahandi in the Department of Computing and Informatics is the lead for BU and the overall BU budget for this project is 393,783.75 Euros. In the current European climate, this is quite an achievement!
Category / Awarded & submitted bids
Professor Genoveva Esteban (Department of Life and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Science and Technology) in collaboration with the Freshwater Biological Association, is running an Advanced Training Course on Freshwater Taxonomy and Field Identification Skills for PhD students, early-career researchers, and post-grads.
The course has been funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and has a maximum of 20 places available for UK-based applicants. Travel (up to £100) and accommodation are covered. The course will be based at the River Laboratory in Dorset, 24th-28th September 2018.
To find out more and to apply visit: https://www.fba.org.uk/courses
Deadline is now 31st July 2018.
If you require further information please contact Genoveva Esteban email@example.com
EU-funded postdoc Cici Alexander completed her 2 year position with Ross Hill and Amanda Korstjens in September 2017. In this time she analysed LiDAR and UAV imaging data to identify trees and forest structural characteristics for the tropical forests that LEAP works at in Indonesia. The newest paper is hot off the press while another paper is in review. In the new paper, Cici shows a method of using drone-mounted cameras to measure and identify tree structures and variation to locate emergent trees at LEAP’s main field site Sikundur, Sumatra, Indonesia. Emergent trees are important for primate sleep sites and serve many other essential roles in tropical forests, but they are also the most vulnerable trees to selective logging.
The work is done in collaboration with our charity partners (Matt Nowak, Graham Usher) at Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Programme, and Serge Wich from Liverpool John Moores University as well as Dr Abdullah from our international partner Universitas Syiah Kuala. Authors also include ISLHE-LEAP PhD student Emma Hankinson and LEAP MRes student Nathan Harris who were vital in verifying the method on the ground.
(Special limited duration paper access link: https://authors.elsevier.com/a/1XAhj14ynSEdoi).
Her first two papers were technical notes on:
Based on LiDAR data from Batang Toru, Sumatra, Indonesia where the newly identified and highly threatened Tapanuli orangutans occur and a planned dam is threatening the ecosystem.
We are pleased to announce that the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) has awarded us a further five years of funding to continue our work as the RDS South West.
Proposals were invited from NHS organisations and Higher Education Institutions in England with proven expertise in research methodology and design. Ten organisations were successful and the combined Research Design Services will form a national network, liaising with each other to develop a consistent service to the research community across England.
The NIHR funding will allow RDS advisers in the South West to continue offering free and confidential advice, drawing on a unique breadth of experience and established track record in improving funding applications.
We have been funded for the ten years prior to this round of funding and the advice offered by us to researchers represents a key contribution to the NIHR’s commitment to delivery of high quality health and social care research.
Professor Gordon Taylor, Director of NIHR RDS SW, said: “I am delighted that the RDS has received a further five years of funding. We look forward to continuing to support researchers, working in applied health, across the South West of England and to strengthen our engagement with partners in social care.”
Find out more about how we could help you by visiting our website or contacting the RDS South West Bournemouth Office hosted within BUCRU (Bournemouth University Clinical Research Unit):
Room R505, Royal London House
Dorset, BH1 3LT
Tel: 01202 961939
Dr Roger Herbert, Dr Alice Hall, Dave Parham & Prof Rick Stafford
Department of Life & Environmental Sciences, Department of Archaeology, Anthropology and Forensic Science.
Marine scientists in the Faculty of Science & Technology have been awarded a multidisciplinary four year (2017-21) EU Interreg project to design Artificial Reefs optimised for Atlantic waters. The main objective is to deploy and monitor artificial reef blocks that have been designed and fabricated using innovative 3D printing technology and sustainable, low-impact bio-receptive materials . Artificial Reefs (AR) in Europe have not been optimised for the Atlantic where they have potential application to mitigate for the loss of natural reef habitats and to enhance food production, coastal infrastructure and recreational amenity. 3D Printing technology offers considerable scope to increase the complexity of textures and voids and to create structures that could be replicated in large quantity.
The project is led by the University of Cantabria Department of Civil Engineering (Santander, Spain) who specialise in 3D Printing. The other main partners include Bournemouth University (Faculty of Science & Technology), CIIMAR (Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental Research, University of Porto, Portugal), IPMA (Portuguese Institute of Sea and Atmosphere), ESITC Caen Institute for Civil Engineering and Construction (Caen, France).
BU expertise includes the survey and monitoring of biological communities on natural and artificial reefs and will be involved in supporting data analysis and mapping activities, small-scale experimental deployments of different materials and will co-ordinate the design, fabrication and deployment of larger reef blocks across the transnational partnership. BU will also develop protocols to monitor the reef blocks and the collection and identification of biota. This will involve regular surveys including the use of SCUBA and drop-down cameras, data analysis and the presentation and dissemination of results through publications, organising workshops and meetings.
A project exploring the ‘Study into the Intellectual Property Implications of the Development of Industrial 3D Printing’ was awarded by the European Commission to the Centre for Intellectual Property Policy and Management (CIPPM) in April 2018.
The project led by Co-Director of CIPPM, Professor Dinusha Mendis (Principal Investigator), also includes Dr. Julie Robson, Associate Professor, Marketing (Co-Investigator), Dr. Marc Mimler, Lecturer in Law (Member of Advisory Board), Dr. Sally Weston, Senior Principal Academic in Law (Member of Advisory Board) and Mr. Dukki Hong, PhD Candidate, CIPPM (Research Assistant).
Apart from members of CIPPM, this one-year project also includes partners from UK (University of Glasgow; Added Scientific Ltd), Austria (Technopolis Group), Finland (University of Lapland) and Germany (Boehmert & Boehmert).
The project aims to provide an overview of the past and current industrial applications of Additive Manufacturing (AM) in selected sectors whilst identifying potential challenges and opportunities in need of clarification. In essence, the Study will aim to formulate a clear picture of the Intellectual Property (IP) framework that could enhance the competitiveness of the AM sector in Europe.
Hate crime as a hot topic
Hate Crime on university campus has attracted widespread attention in the media of late, with a spate of high profile incidents targeting Black Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) students in particular in the UK. Despite increased awareness of it, it is estimated that hate crime is considerably under-reported by students (Universities UK, 2016; NUS, 2012). BU’s Equality and Diversity Unit, supported by Dr James Palfreman-Kay, was awarded funding by HEFCE in late 2017 as part of their Catalyst Fund to tackle hate crime and online harassment on campus. This is a joint project, working with partners in SUBU, CPS Wessex, Dorset Police, Access Dorset, the Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner as well as colleagues and academics at BU and from other agencies associated with Prejudice Free Dorset.
What does the project involve?
The objective of the project was to provide students with the knowledge of what a hate crime is, how to respond to it and where to seek support, both on and off campus. This was achieved through the use of a drama based format called Forum Theatre (FT) which uses actors to share scenes of discrimination and hate crime (Dwyer, 2010; Hamel, 2015). FT has previously been used in promoting social change and critical thinking (Boal, 1974) and the value of this approach was that it would enable students to try out courses of action which could be applicable to their everyday lives and provide a gateway for increasing reporting.
The project is funded for the remainder of 2018, and a pilot was run in March with a cohort of social science Level 4 students. Jane Healy, Lecturer in Sociology & Crime & Deviance, worked with James to embed the Forum Theatre process within a learning session with 85 students from across BA Sociology, BA Sociology & Criminology, and BA Sociology & Anthropology programmes. The students were exploring Hate Crime as one element of their Level 4 Social Exclusion and Discrimination Unit, and the FT company were invited into the Wollstonecraft lecture theatre on the Lansdowne site. Four actors created two scenarios based on a fictitious university campus, involving religious and homophobic hate crimes but also acknowledging other, intersecting elements of identity. The scenarios were drawn from examples of similarly reported crimes provided by CPS Wessex. None had occurred at BU, but were designed to engage students and encourage discussion and debate.
The students were thoroughly engaged in the FT scenarios. As the first scenario was played out, silence descended on the room and students (and staff) held their breath as the ‘student’ characters experienced an unpleasant encounter near their halls of residence. The second involved online hate crime and the impact it had on victims, friends and bystanders. Once the scenes were completed, actors returned to the stage in their ‘roles’ and students were able to ask questions of them. The response was at times rambunctious as members of the audience quizzed and at times challenged ‘bystanders’ about their participation. Ultimately, however, the serious message of hate crime as a corrosive and socially divisive aspect of contemporary society was conveyed in a respectful and thought-provoking manner.
In order to evaluate the success of the programme, students were asked about their knowledge of hate crime both before and after the FT event and what impact it has had on them, through an evaluation questionnaire. Initial findings suggest an improved awareness of hate crime, although some students unfortunately had previous experience of hate crimes and incidents. Students are also being invited to do a follow up interview.
The FT event provided a unique method of engaging with and debating hate crimes on campus, in a safe and respectful environment. Embedding it within a Unit enabled the project’s exposure to a large cohort. As a result of positive feedback, it will be rolled out across all three sociology programme year groups over the coming months.
Interested in attending the next Forum Theatre?
There are two further forum theatre open events on Campus before the end of term; 23 April in Lansdowne and 17 May on Talbot. Details can be found at the bottom of this post. However, any interested academics and/or teaching staff can contact James to discuss a bespoke session to suit their student cohort.
By raising awareness and increasing reporting, BU is sending a positive message that hate crime, in all its forms, is unacceptable.
Open Event Dates
Everyone is welcome to the following:
23 April 10-12 open Lansdowne campus session:
17 May 10-12 open Talbot campus session:
Jane Healy has recently completed a PhD in disablist hate crimes and is a Lecturer in Sociology & Crime & Deviance in the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences.
Your ‘Timely Reminder’
Every year, the Research & Knowledge Exchange Office, along with internal and external delivery partners, runs over 150 events to support researcher development through the Research & Knowledge Exchange Development Framework (RKEDF).
Responding to your feedback and by popular request, below are the main events coming up over the next two months – please click on the event titles that are of interest to find out more and reserve your place as soon as possible:
Thursday 5th April – The BU Protocol of Academics Engaging with Business
Wednesday 11th April – STEAMlab 3: Industrial Challenges (N.B. This event welcomes non-BU attendees)
11th, 12th & 13th April – Writing Academy
Tuesday 17th April – Research Ethics @ BU
Wednesday 18th April – Open data and the need for research data management plans, Getting started on applying for research funding, Pre-award finances, BU processes for applying for funding and Quality approvals at BU
Thursday 19th April – International Funding – Working with ASEAN countries
23rd & 24th April –An Introduction to Statistic Analysis with SPSS (Intermediate Session)
25th & 26th April – MSCA IF bid writing retreat – 2 days
Wednesday 2nd May – Introduction to the Royal Academy of Engineering – Visit
Wednesday 2nd May – EU funding outside Horizon 2020
Tuesday 8th May – Grants Workshop & Follow-up Bid Writing Retreat Day 2 of 2
Wednesday 9th May – Wellcome Trust- Visit
Wednesday 9th May – KTPs – an introduction
Monday 14th May – Fellowship Interview Training – Royal Academy of Engineering
Wednesday 16th May – Applying for funding from NIHR – an Overview of the Schemes Available (N.B. This event welcomes non-BU attendees)
Wednesday 16th May – Introducing and Evidencing Research Impact: the Basics
Thursday 17th May – Engaging with policy makers
Tuesday 22nd May – Writing Academy – Writing Day
Wednesday 23rd May – What is the Research Excellence Framework?
Once again Jens Holscher was awarded an ERASMUS grant to visit the University of Perugia (Italy). BU has a long established collaboration with colleagues in Perugia both in research and teaching. Jens will go there with PhD student Peter Howard-Jones to present a paper on Firm Productivity in the Western Balkans in their research seminar, which they recently published in Economic Annals. They will also give a series of lectures on Emerging Markets.
Dr Elvira Bolat has secured Erasmus Staff Teaching Mobility fund to visit and teach at the University of Beira Interior (Covilhã, Portugal) in May-June 2018. Elvira will deliver a social media marketing and online communication course to Master students. This visit will be hosted by Dr Arminda Maria Finisterra do Paço, Assistant Professor in Marketing.
In addition, Dr Bolat is organising and chairing the 17th The International Congress on Public and Non Profit Marketing (IAPNM), an annual event organised by major universities and scientific institutes that offers a friendly atmosphere and professional work environment for the presentation and discussion of the latest scientific and practical advances in the areas of public and nonprofit marketing, as well as in any other issue related to corporate social responsibility, social marketing and management of nonprofit organisations. IAPNM will be held in Bournemouth on 6-7 September 2018. The event attracts academics, businesses, public organisations and non-profit organisations across the world. Bournemouth being a Sustainable Fish city of Europe will continue building on its current reputation in a sustainability agenda. Dr Arminda Maria Finisterra do Paço and Dr Helena Maria Alves, from the University of Beira Interior, are members of IAPNM scientific committee. Travel to and teaching in the University of Beira Interior will allow Dr Bolat to discuss organisation of IAPNM in Bournemouth as well as enable collaborative research projects via joint funding proposals and research papers around use of social media in NGO’s (non-governmental organisations), tourism or HEI (higher education institutions).
Overall the visit will strengthen and expand the partnership between BU and the University of Beira Interior, especially in relation to the nonprofit marketing discipline.
The following projects have been awarded for the summer round of the Student Research Assistantship (SRA) scheme. Projects are open for applications and students can apply via MyCareerHub using the links below.
This summer programme is for 120 hours work between May and 31st July 2018 and is open to all campus-based undergraduate and postgradaute-taught students from all faculties, who have grades of over 70%.
2D/3D Animation Tool Developer – Student Research Assistant – Dr Xiaosong Yang
An analysis of Channel 4’s broadcast coverage of the 2016 Rio Paralympics – Student Research Assistant – Dr Dan Jackson and Dr Emma Pullen
Augmented Reality Student Research Assistant – Dr Tom Wainwright
CAIRIS Research Software Engineer – Student Research Assistant – Dr Shamal Faily
‘Debt Financing Impact – Family Firms UK’ Student Research Assistant – Dr Suranjita Mukherjee
Digital connectivity and leisure in later life – Student Research Assistant – Prof. Janet Dickinson
Entrepreneurial Graduates Student Research Assistant – Clive Allen
Student Research Assistant: Food donations in the UK grocery retail sector – The role of local charities – Dr Viachaslau Filimonau
– Dr Viachaslau Filimonau
‘Housing Information Retrieval System’ Student Research Assistant – Dr Edward Apeh
HTML5 Game developer – Student Research Assistant – Dr Vedad Hulusic
Marketing & Economic Well-being Student Research Assistant – Prof. Juliet Memery
Marketing and Media Student Research Assistant – Dr Tom Wainwright
Public Engagement Student Research Assistant (Virtual Avebury) – Prof. Kate Welham
Public Service Motivation and Civic Engagement – Student research Assistant – Dr Joyce Costello
Reconstructing Disney Films – Student Research Assistant – Dr Alexander Sergeant
Student Research Assistant for a Political Anthropology Project on Gibraltar & Spain – Dr Laura Bunt-MacRury
Research Assistant: Economic Impact of the Rohingya Refugee Crisis – Dr Mehdi Chowdhury
– Dr Sally Lee and Prof. Lee-Ann Fenge
– Dr Paula Callus
AI and Business Applications – Student Research Assistant – Dr Martyn Polkinghorne
Public Engagement Activities of Postgraduate Researchers – Student Research Assistant – Dr Martyn Polkinghorne
Entrepreneurship Education – Student Research Assistant – Dr Mili Shrivastava
Student Research Assistant (micro-plastics and disease dynamics) – Prof. Robert Britton
Student Research Assistant in Law & AI – Dr Argyro Karanasiou
The effect of signage on driving performance: Student Research Assistant – Dr Christos Gatzidis
– Dr Fiona Coward
– Prof. Dimitrios Buhalis
Understanding the Hackers: Student Research Assistant – Dr John McAlaney
‘Who’s a scientist?’ Project Student Research Assistant – Dr Shelley Thompson
Team-based Learning Student Research Assistant – Lucy Stainer
‘TRAnsparent Web protection for alL, TRAWL’ Student Research Assistant – Dr Alexios Mylonas
Please promote these vacancies to students where applicable. All jobs are live on MyCareerHub, our Careers & Employability online careers tool. You will need to use your staff/student credentials to login.
Please do look out for SRA updates on the BU Research Blog.
If you have any questions about this scheme, please contact Charlene Parrish, Student Project Bank Coordinator, on 61281 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bournemouth University leads the Kosovo-strand of a major four-year AHRC ‘Global Challenges’ project titled ‘Changing the Story‘. This project aims at supporting the building of inclusive civil societies (CSOs) with, and for, young people in five post-conflict countries. It asks how the arts, heritage, and human rights education can support youth-centred approaches to civil society building in Cambodia, Colombia, Kosovo, Rwanda and South Africa. The Kosovo strand benefits from an established track record of collaboration with University of Prishtina (Co-I) and Stacion: Centre for Contemporary Arts in Prishtina as well as several arts-based civil society organisations in the country. The BU-led strand focuses on formal and informal civic education through the arts in Kosovo, to be explored locally by a Postgraduate Research Assistant, attached to University of Prishtina, through a critical review and proof of concept exercise during the first year. In support, BU is contributing a fully-funded PhD scholarship under the title ‘Imagining New Futures: Engaging Young People Through Participatory Arts in Post-Conflict Kosovo‘, which is currently being advertised.
International collaborative activities commenced last week in collaboration with an internationally-acclaimed CSO partner in Dorset, devoted to developing global youth citizenship through culture and the arts. The award-winning Complete Freedom of Truth project (TCFT), with which BU collaborated already previously, kindly offered a one-week residency to Albert Heta, Director of Stacion: Centre for Contemporary Arts in Prishtina. This residency brought together a group of artists, workshop leaders and young people from across the UK between February 12 and 16 in Bridport. Albert’s visit from Kosovo was funded by the AHRC and facilitated by BU’s new Research Centre ‘Seldom Heard-Voices: Marginalisation and Society Integration’ of the Faculty of Health and Social Sciences (FHSS). Together with Albert, some of the Centre’s members also participates in the events organised by TCFT, exchanged experiences and discussed best practice of working with young people of various background through the arts towards social justice. TCFT has a long history of working with young people, internationally, starting in post-conflict Srebrenica in 2008. Based on our observations during one week in Dorset, including of the issues selected as important by the young UK-participants during this period, we are currently reflecting on the extent to, and ways in, which arts-based interventions with a given set of young people in one specific socio-cultural context and its underpinning conceptualisations (such as of empowerment or vulnerability of, and pressures on, young people) can or cannot be transferred to another, such as that in which young people in Kosovo negotiate their aspirations.
Photo credit below: Robert Golden
I can tell you, it was not easy, but I finally succeeded at securing funds from British Council to organise a Researcher Links workshop. This was a resubmission of an application that received good reviews in a previous round, but didn’t get funded. The feedback helped identifying where improvements were needed and we decided to submit it again. It also helped that I have already being to South Africa delivering workshops to public sector practitioners on a similar subject – so I had a good idea about South Africa needs in terms of capacity building in this area. Researcher Links workshop grants are a great way of developing links with colleagues from selected partner countries and, at the same time, stimulating early career researchers to engage in international collaboration. Funds are available to support the attendance of early-career researchers based in South Africa and the UK and workshops aim to stimulate long-lasting partnerships and research collaboration between the two countries.
I’m very pleased to be able to organise one of these workshops in collaboration with colleagues from the UK (Hull and Ulster) and South Africa (University of KwaZulu-Natal and Oceanographic Research Institute). The workshop will be held on 19-21 June 2018 at the uShaka Marine World in Durban. The call for participants is now out and we invite early-career researchers from the social and natural sciences with research interests in the sustainable management of coasts and estuaries. You can find out more about the workshop and how to submit your application here.
Coastal and estuarine ecosystems worldwide are under pressure from population growth, urbanisation and other land-based and marine activities. In the UK and South Africa, coastal areas greatly contribute to the local and national economy by supporting key urban centres and industries. Climate change tends to exacerbate existing problems, including but not limited to flooding, erosion, water quality and resource availability, which can have implications on environmental quality, food production, water supply and human health. Ecosystem-based management (EBM) has emerged as an integrated approach for the sustainable management of the trade-offs between socioeconomic development and nature conservation. EBM requires a transdisciplinary understanding of the natural system, nature-human interactions, and how they change through time. The workshop will bring together researchers from South Africa and the UK to discuss how they can collaborate to support EBM through the development of long-lasting UK-SA collaboration and government-research partnerships. The workshop aims to attract researchers from the social and natural sciences to create the required combination of expertise to co-construct, advance and share knowledge to support estuarine and coastal EBM. The integration of scientific and practical knowledge will be facilitated by the participation of NGOs and government practitioners.
We are delighted to announce that the British Academy will again be returning to BU on Tuesday the 6th March 2018.
This is an invaluable opportunity to find out more about the international and domestic funding available through the organisation. For those of you who are not familiar with the British Academy, it is the UK’s leading independent body for the humanities and social sciences, promoting funding, knowledge exchange and providing independent advice within the humanities.
The session will last just over 1 hour (12:30pm-13:30pm) and will comprise a presentation focusing on international and domestic funding opportunities along with an overview of the British Academy and any recent developments, followed by a Q&A session.
Representatives of the British Academy will be available to answer any individual queries not covered in the presentation or Q&A session, and members of the Research and Knowledge Exchange Office will be on hand should you wish to discuss BU’s processes for bidding to the organisation.
Places for this event can be reserved through Organisational Development here
- Bournemouth University and Baringa selected to deliver data analysis and algorithm development to the Energy Technologies Institute (ETI).
- The High Frequency Appliance Disaggregation Analysis project will analyse real world data from the ETI’s Home Energy Management System (HEMS) in five homes to gather detailed energy data from water, gas and electricity use.
- This data will help develop algorithms to forecast domestic energy needs of the future and provide industry with valuable insight into consumer energy use to develop efficient energy services.
Bournemouth University, under the lead on Professor Hamid Bouchachia, and specialist energy advisors Baringa Partners have both been selected by the Energy Technologies Institute (ETI) to undertake data analysis in a new knowledge building smart energy project that will investigate domestic energy use.
The High Frequency Appliance Disaggregation Analysis (HFADA) project builds upon work undertaken in the Smart Systems and Heat (SSH) programme delivered by the Energy Systems Catapult for the ETI, to refine intelligence and gain detailed smart home energy data.
The project will analyse in depth data from five homes that have been trialling the SSH programme’s Home Energy Management System (HEMS) to identify which appliances are present within a building and when they are in operation. The main goal of the HFADA project is to detect human behaviour patterns in order to forecast the home energy needs of people in the future. In particular the project will deliver a detailed set of data mining algorithms top help identify patterns of building occupancy and energy use within domestic homes from water, gas and electricity data.
Bournemouth University and Baringa, working in partnership with ASI Data Science, will work independently to provide information derived from the water, gas and electricity use in these UK homes, from the end of 2017 to middle of 2018.
Should anyone be interested in further details, please contact Prof Hamid Bouchachia at email@example.com.
Recently, I was fortune enough to become the Research Assistant on the HEIF-6 project run by Dr Ben Hicks. This is a one year project that aims to develop and evaluate a free Virtual Learning Environment tool that will support practitioners and care home staff wishing to use commercial gaming technology (iPads, Nintendo Wii) with people with dementia and their care partners. We have a number of experts involved in the research, such as Dr Samuel Nyman from Psychology Department and ADRC, Professor Wen Tang from Department of Creative Technology, Dr Sarah Thomas who is Deputy Director BUCRU and Dr Clare Cutler who is Research Skills and Development Officer. We also collaborate with Alive! who are a charity dedicated to improving the lives of older people and people with dementia through delivering innovative activities (e.g. the use of technology) and training dementia care practitioners. They work with 350 Care Homes and Day Centers across the South West of England and we are lucky to have Malcolm Burgin onboard who as the Regional Manager of Alive!.
Being part of such a research team, and having the chance to contribute to the HEIF-6 project is a great privilege and will certainly be beneficial as I begin my journey as an early career researcher.
If you would like further information on the project, please feel free to email Ben on bhicks@Bournemouth.ac.uk
The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) funded Reading on Screen project held two workshops recently; one at the University of Brighton (22-24 September) and one last weekend (14-15 October) at Sheffield Hallam University.
At Sheffield we were fortunate to be included in the programme for Off the Shelf, a literary festival that runs throughout October in the city featuring some high profile authors, including this year Robert Webb and Henry Blofeld. We also took part in Brighton’s Digital Festival, showcasing some of the stories and also featuring some of our storytellers in a lively discussion about the future of reading in the digital age.
The stories produced in the workshops are now available for viewing on the project website and we welcome comments!
An exhibition of the stories is planned for December 15 in Brighton’s Media Centre. Here we will be featuring the stories we are producing based on photographs and audio recordings captured during the workshops. We will also be hearing from some of the storytellers from all three workshops (Bournemouth, Brighton and Sheffield) about their experiences of the workshops and how this opportunity has opened new doors for them.
My name is Shannon Birch-Chapman and I am currently a Research Assistant in the Faculty of Management at Bournemouth University, working on a QR funded project titled Trust Repair in the Service Sector.
Our team is investigating how organisations can repair trust following trust erosion, focussing on three highly publicised cases: 1) the treatment of staff at the main Sports Direct Warehouse in Derbyshire; 2) the Alton Towers rollercoaster crash that caused two women to have leg amputations; and 3) the mis-selling of PPI by banks. These are diverse case studies with different causes and severities of trust erosion and as such, our team consists of people with diverse backgrounds: two in finance (Dr Julie Robson and Samreen Ashraf), two in leisure and hospitality (Dr Caroline Jackson and Dr Elvira Borat), two in retail (Prof Juliet Memery and Dr Jason Sit) and me: an archaeologist!
Figure 1. Excavating on the Bournemouth University Durotriges Project in 2013.
“How did an archaeologist become a Research Assistant in the Faculty of Management?” I hear you ask. Well, as any archaeology graduate knows, finding steady employment in archaeology following your degree (or in my case, an undergraduate degree, an honours degree, a masters and a PhD!) is almost impossible. The great thing about studying archaeology is that we learn a wide range of transferrable skills and are particularly good at sifting through large volumes of quantitative and qualitative evidence, and synthesising this to make informed conclusions. We are essentially the detectives of the past and, as such, make meticulous researchers.
Figure 2. Surveying the architectural remains at the Pre-Pottery Neolithic site of Ba’ja in Jordan in 2015.
In this project, I have put my previous skills to good use, conducting literature searches; compiling and writing background information for our case studies, conference presentations and journal articles; devising the conceptual framework and hypotheses for our project, and linking these to the current theories; analysing data; and writing and presenting results.
I have also developed several new qualitative research skills, particularly relating to the gathering of data through consumer focus groups, stakeholder interviews and questionnaires. As someone who had never done qualitative research of this kind, it was an interesting process working out how to devise the right questions to ask. I hadn’t ever given much thought to how much effort goes into constructing these and analysing the outputs.
One of the most challenging and rewarding aspects of the research to date has been learning how to use NVivo: a program for analysing qualitative data. Our team attended a two day workshop with Ben Meehan from QDA Training, which was tailored for our project. It was then my job to ‘code’ and analyse the data from the consumer focus groups and some of the stakeholder interviews. I used a combination of template and thematic approaches, whereby participant responses were ‘coded’ into pre-existing and emerging themes. The themes related to definitions of trust, the cause and severity of trust erosion, specific trust repair strategies and the success of these for trust repair. Running queries on the coded data, we were able to determine the trust repair strategies that were most successful for each of our three case studies.
The project started around February this year and we have already had the opportunity to present our research at the 3rd International Colloquium on Design, Brand and Marketing (ICDBM) in April and at Bournemouth University’s Festival of Learning in July. We are presenting at the 3rd International Colloquium on Corporate Branding, Identity, Image and Reputation (COBIIR): Current and Future Trends, Developments and Challenges in September and have two journal articles in preparation. We are hoping that our results will guide best practice in industry and the team will be looking to work more directly with practitioners in the next stage of the research.
Figure 3. Presenting at the ICDBM conference in 2017 (left to right: Shannon Birch-Chapman, Caroline Jackson, Julie Robson and Samreen Ashraf).
As for me, I am nearing the end of my contract at Bournemouth University. Being a research assistant here has enabled me to apply and develop even stronger research skills beyond my discipline that I am sure will help me in my search for future employment. I wonder what interesting things I will be researching next…
To follow Trust Repair project, tweet at @TrustRepairBU
Bolat, E., Robson, J., Ashraf, S., Birch-Chapman, S., Sit, J., Memery, J. and Jackson, C., 2017. Corporate brand rehab: Diagnosing trust repair mechanisms in the service sectors. Paper to be presented at the 3rd International Colloquium on Corporate Branding, Identity, Image and Reputation (COBIIR): Current and Future Trends, Developments and Challenges. 7th-8th September 2017.
Robson, J., Memery, J., Jackson, C., Sit, J., Bolat, E., Ashraf, S., Birch-Chapman, S., 2017. Trust Me: I’m no longer a damaged brand. Paper presented at the 3rd International Colloquium on Design, Brand and Marketing (ICDBM), Bournemouth University, 5th Apr 2017.