Category / BU Challenges

Invitation to AT Virtual STEAMLab

On Wednesday, 12 May 2021, RDS will be hosting Virtual AT STEAMlab (Science/Tech/Engineering/Arts/Maths lab) event under the strategic investment area (SIA) of Assistive Technology (AT). It will be the second of a series of up to 2-hour long virtual STEAMlabs to be held in the course of 2021.

The ideas generated at this event may also be used to help select colleagues for further Scramble events at short notice.

Booking onto this event

To take part in this exciting opportunity, we ask all participants to download and complete the AT STEAMLab Application Form and return this to Ainar Blaudums by Wednesday, 5 May 2021.

By applying, you agree to attend for the full duration of the event on 12 May from 10:30am to 1pm. Places at the event are limited and you will be contacted to confirm your “virtual space” by 7 May 2021.

If you have any queries prior to submitting your application, please contact RDS Research Facilitators Ainar Blaudums or Ehren Milner.

 The Brief

We’re seeking to come up with highly innovative and urgently required research which is ambitious in scope and will require a high level of expertise, commitment and funding. The research must address challenges in the AT field.

In short, we anticipate the development of innovative, ground-breaking cross-disciplinary and ambitious projects which have the capacity to attract significant, high value external funding from the public and private sectors in the future.

Who should attend?

We welcome those who wish to contribute to having a positive impact through addressing scientific challenges, but in particular, we are specifically targeting the following:

  1. Those academics whose research aligns with one or more of the BU’s core research areas, or whose research would benefit from the multidisciplinary, collaborative engagement supported by the AT SIA;
  2. Those who have experience of involvement in medium to large scale research projects.

We will also be inviting relevant external attendees, such as digital technology companies, to contribute on the day.

Some Answers to your FAQs:

Do I need to do anything in advance?

No, you do not. During the STEAMLab, you’ll be guided through a process which results in the development of collaborative research ideas. The process facilitates creativity, potentially leading to grand, innovative and interdisciplinary research. These ideas will be shared and explored with other attendees, and further developed based on the feedback received.

 What is the immediate objective?

The objective by the end of the STEAMlab is to have scoped some leading and grand ideas around which a working group or cluster can be formed to take forward towards the development of a large grant application. This event is run to facilitate new interdisciplinary research collaborations.

What do I need to do afterwards?

Your project idea may be “oven-ready”, but it is more likely than not that, given the level of pioneering innovation sought, you/your group’s project idea/s will require some time to crystallise fully, and for the optimum partners to be found for the building a winning consortium, and bringing to fruition a fully-fledged grant application. To this end, it is envisaged that you and your potential collaborators will be committed to meeting on a regular basis, with a firm timetable.

What if my topic area is very specialised, within fields such as medical diagnostics or environmental science?

Your contribution will be very welcome! One of the main benefits of a STEAMlab event is to bring together individuals with a range of backgrounds and specialisms who are able to see things just that bit differently to one another.

REIGNITE LONDON – London Calling: Sharing is Caring! rebuilding life, communities and economythrough Hospitality and Tourism and the Central London Alliance

REIGNITE LONDON – London Calling: Sharing is Caring! rebuilding life, communities and economy
through Hospitality and Tourism and the Central London Alliance
JOIN US Tuesday 20th April 15:00:-17:00

The meeting will be broadcasted LIVE on Facebook

Organised by:
Bournemouth University International Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research
Central London Alliance
PATA UK Bournemouth University Student Chapter
Chaired: Professors Dimitrios Buhalis and Adele Ladkin
Keynote: Tony Matharu, Integrity International Group and Central London Alliance
Panel:
Daniela Wagner, Travel Weekly Group and PATA EMEA
Robert Paterson, CEO, Best Western Hotels
CENTRAL LONDON ALLIANCE is a collection of London businesses large and small, communities, charities,
associations and authorities who are pooling their resources and considerable influence to push
for a faster and more sustainable recovery of the capital city.

Animation, Simulation, Visualisation: you are already immersed….

“Smart” homes, cities, and motorways, the Internet of Things, and Digital Twins are just some of the 21st century phenomena fast becoming – if not yet a ubiquitous reality on the (Western) ground – at least now common parlance, and no aspect of our lived experience and myriad environments remains untouched by such technologies. As you will be aware, your research – in whatever field you specialise – is not unaffected by these developments. Our Animation, Simulation and Visualisation (ASV) Network literally and virtually plugs into these digital drivers and interfaces, now forming an expanding transdisciplinary group populated by talented, research-active academics from all BU faculties and several research centres, and sharing a commitment to growing high-end, collaborative, fundamental and applied research at BU.
Included in the network are our internationally reputable National Centre for Computer Animation (NCCA) and the Disaster Management Centre (DMC) – both renowned for sterling achievements in their fields – and our more recently launched Institute for the Modelling of Socio-Environmental Transitions (IMSET), and Institute for Medical Imaging and Visualisation (IMIV), who already have a raft of invigorating projects in the pipeline. They are exemplars of the scope and impact of ASV-based or deployed research, and mentioned here to fire up your enthusiasm to explore ASV and ponder how this strategic investment area may be relevant to or harnessed for your research. The strategic mission of the ASV network is to orient the valuable research projects undertaken by BU academics, their partners and stakeholders towards current “real-world” problems which require innovative solutions.
Whether it is entertainment and the pandemic-induced move towards virtual production, the rapidly-evolving digitisation of education, public health or environmental crisis management, the democratisation of medical self-surveillance, state-of-the-art ASV medical diagnostics, AR/VR-enhanced surgical training, virtual access to natural and cultural heritage, inter alia, ASV features in much of the research and practices, products and outputs immanent to these areas of knowledge and expertise. As well as conceptualising, supporting and securing funding for transdisciplinary projects, the ASV network seeks to nurture ECRs and MCRs in their career progression and encourage BU academics to network and explore ambitious, mutually beneficial cross-fertilisations from an ASV perspective which they may not have considered previously.
If you wish to explore how you might become involved in the mission, aims and objectives of the ASV strategic investment area, and ascertain how you might strategically tailor your research for the common good by becoming part of this broad-based, vibrant and dynamic network, please contact me, Nicolette, at nbliebchen@bournemouth.ac.uk, or via MS Teams for an informal chat.
To pique your interest in the strategic investment areas in general, do have a look at the SIA Expression of Interest call for Game-Changing Concepts on the BU Research Blog (on which you shall also find the EoI template: deadline 30 April 2021)

Invitation to VIRTUAL STEAMlab

On Wednesday, 24 February 2021, BU’s Research, Support & Development Office will be hosting our very first, pilot Virtual STEAMlab (Science/Tech/Engineering/Arts/Maths lab) event under the aegis of the strategic investment area (SIA) of Animation, Simulation & Visualisation (ASV). It will also be the first of a series of 2-hour long virtual ASV STEAMlabs to be held in the course of 2021.

This first STEAMlab will introduce and address four core priority areas for the strategic development of ASV cross-faculty, multi-disciplinary collaborations across BU in conjunction with external partners. These 4 areas are:

Virtual Production

Digital Health

Environment in Crisis

Virtual Heritage

This first STEAMlab will focus on these ASV themes in break-out rooms to target specific funding opportunities.

The ideas generated at this event may also be used to help select colleagues for Scramble events at short notice.

Booking onto this event

To take part in this exciting opportunity, all participants should complete the ASV Virtual STEAMLab Application Form V2 and return this to Nicolette Barsdorf-Liebchen at nbliebchen@bournemouth.ac.uk by Friday, 5 February 2021.

By applying, you agree to attend for the full duration of the event on 24 February 2021, 1 – 3 pm. Places are strictly limited and you will be contacted to confirm your “virtual space” by 12 February 2021.

If you have any queries prior to submitting your application, please contact Nicolette Barsdorf-Liebchen.

 

The Brief

We’re seeking to come up with highly innovative and urgently required research which is ambitious in scope and will require a high level of expertise, commitment and funding. The research must address challenges in the above-mentioned areas, and seek to deploy BU’s considerable ASV expertise and assets.

In short, we anticipate the development of innovative, ground-breaking and ambitious projects which have the capacity to attract significant, high value funding from the public and private sectors.

Who should attend?

We welcome those who wish to contribute to having a positive impact through addressing these challenges, but in particular, we are specifically targeting the following:

  1. Those academics whose research aligns with one or more of these core areas, or whose research would benefit from the multidisciplinary, collaborative engagement supported by the ASV SIA;
  2. Who has experience of involvement in medium to large research projects, and finally;
  3. Who either has the capacity to lead as PI on ideas arising from the STEAMlab in a working group towards development of a substantial grant application of close to or above £1 million, or has the ambition, research track record and commitment to be involved in the same.

We will also be inviting relevant external attendees, such as digital technology companies, to contribute on the day.

Some Answers to your FAQs:

Do I need to do anything in advance?

No, you do not. During the STEAMLab, you’ll be guided through a process which results in the development of research ideas. The process facilitates creativity, potentially leading to grand, innovative and interdisciplinary research ideas. These ideas will be explored with other attendees, and further developed based on the feedback received.

 

What is the immediate objective?

The objective by the end of the STEAMlab is to have scoped some leading and grand ideas around which a working group or cluster can be formed to take forward towards the development of a large grant application.

What do I need to do afterwards?

Your project idea may be “oven-ready”, but it is more likely than not that, given the level of pioneering innovation sought, you/your group’s project idea/s will require some time to crystallise fully, and for the optimum partners to be found for the bidding consortium, and bringing to fruition a fully-fledged grant application. To this end, it is envisaged that you and your potential collaborators will be committed to meeting on a regular basis, with a firm timetable. Substantial administrative support will be available from both RDS as a whole and the ASV Research Facilitator, Dr Nicolette Barsdorf-Liebchen, to advance your project development and manage working groups.

What if my topic area is very specialised, within fields such as medical diagnostics or environmental science?

Your contribution will be very welcome! One of the main benefits of a STEAMlab event is to bring together individuals with a range of backgrounds and specialisms who are able to see things just that bit differently to one another.

New article just published: Stoyanova-Bozhkova, S., Paskova, T., & Buhalis, D. (2020). Emotional intelligence: a competitive advantage for tourism and hospitality managers. Tourism Recreation Research, 1-13.

New article just published: 

Stoyanova-Bozhkova, S., Paskova, T., & Buhalis, D. (2020). Emotional intelligence: a competitive advantage for tourism and hospitality managersTourism Recreation Research, 1-13.

https://doi.org/10.1080/02508281.2020.1841377

ABSTRACT 

The purpose of this paper is to provide a better understanding of tourism and hospitality management through exploring the perceptions of and the application of emotional intelligence (EI) in the practices of managers. The effect of EI on improving business performance is widely acknowledged in business and management studies. However, there is limited research in the context of tourism and hospitality industries. The paper contributes to the literature through a qualitative study of the perceptions and experiences of middle-level managers. Data was collected through semi-structured in-depth interviews conducted in tourism and hospitality organisations in the UK.

The findings of the study reveal that EI can have a positive contribution to improving staff satisfaction, motivation and overall business productivity. They highlight the importance of building quality relationships among staff and the critical role middle management has in an organisation. Based on the finding from the qualitative inquiry, the authors propose a model conceptualising the role of managers’ EI in creating a competitive advantage for the organisation. Practical implications are discussed and recommendations for further research are provided. 

KEYWORDS: Emotional intelligence, staff satisfaction, self-regulation, staff motivation, tourism and hospitality industries, qualitative methodology

emotional intelligence
emotional Intelligence Model
Manager Emotional Intelligence

BU’s Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Research Centre opening event -video recording

On Monday the 2nd of November we celebrated the opening of BU’s Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Research Centre

During the event we provided an overview of the techniques, recording modalities and facilities that we have available, and discussed potential collaborations and projects.

The centre is designed to foster collaborative research in neuroscience within the university and with our external partners to enable us to bid for external funding. We also seek to promote education in neurosciences in graduate and post-graduate programs.

If you couldn’t attend and are interested in this area, please find below the video recording of the event. Thank you very much and we hope you enjoy it!

Link to recording: https://bournemouth-ac-uk.zoom.us/rec/share/0Zhf4FTcv9M-KjqFHiuWOUZWVkW-8niOSW2fzs_j5gHQUwSRzfmoX-CURAXQ1goA.R6n_l-4nGOjAfOTg

Passcode: UK#E1QhK

If you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact any of us (Ellen Seiss, eseiss@bournemouth.ac.uk, Hanna Burianová hburianova@bournemouth.ac.uk, Emili Balaguer-Ballester eb-ballester@bournemouth.ac.uk, or Peter Arabaci Hills phills@bournemouth.ac.uk).

Smart technology and the Future of Hospitality and Tourism after COVID-19

Professor Dimitrios Buhalis contributed a presentation entitled
Smart technology and the Future of Hospitality and Tourism after COVID-19
to the School of Hotel and Tourism Management, PolyU, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

#IMPACT2020 Conference today.

https://youtu.be/YTqnN27khic

#CrisisManagement #Recovery #Strategy #TourismRecovery #RecoveryStrategy #Future #Hospitality #Tourism #Technology #COVID19 #PostCOVID19 

 

Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Research Centre informal event

We would like to invite you to the informal online opening event of BU’s Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Research Centre on Monday 2 November from 10am – 12pm, in Zoom.

The centre is designed to foster collaborative research in applied, translational and theoretical neuroscience within the university and with our external partners to enable us to bid for external funding. We also seek to promote education in neurosciences in graduate and post-graduate programs. The centre offers a range of experimental and theoretical expertise and we are interested in collaborating with internal and external colleagues.

During the event we will provide a very brief overview of the techniques, recording modalities and facilities that we have available. Then we would welcome discussion around potential collaborations and projects.

Add this event to your diary and join us on Zoom

Meeting ID: 885 0146 7009
Passcode: BE@hTx^1

Thank you very much and we are looking forward to seeing you there.

If you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact any of us (Ellen Seiss, eseiss@bournemouth.ac.uk  Emili Balaguer-Ballester eb-ballester@bournemouth.ac.uk or Peter Abaraci Hills phills@bournemouth.ac.uk).

IMIV MRI Pump-Priming Research Scheme

To celebrate the launch of the Bournemouth University Institute of Medical Imaging and Visualisation, and the opening of the MRI Centre in the Bournemouth Gateway Building, we are pleased to launch an MRI pump-priming scheme to support innovative MRI research projects.

The aim of this scheme is to support projects that will lead to competitive external funding applications for MR imaging studies.  Applications will therefore be 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).
  • Up to 4 awards of up to 20 hours’ scanning time will be available. The award 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.
  • There will be online information and project development sessions with members of the IMIV team at 3.30pm on Thursday 22nd October and Thursday 5th November. Please email imiv@bournemouth.ac.uk to register your interest and receive the login details. You can view the virtual presentation here.

To register your interest, and receive the application form, please email imiv@bournemouth.ac.uk. The deadline for applications is 13th December 2020.

BU Open Access Publication Fund

The BU Open Access Publication Fund policy and procedure has recently been reviewed and revised to reflect changes to this year’s budget. The newly revised policy and checklist can be found here

BU now also benefit from various Open Access agreements through JISC deals including with publishers like Wiley, Sage and Springer. Please see the links below for more information about the agreement and eligible journal titles:

SAGE – https://uk.sagepub.com/en-gb/eur/open-access-agreements-at-sage/united-kingdom

Wiley – https://authorservices.wiley.com/author-resources/Journal-Authors/open-access/affiliation-policies-payments/jisc-agreement.html

Springer Compact – https://www.springer.com/gp/open-access/springer-open-choice/springer-compact/for-uk-authors-intro/731990

Please do check out the various open access deals that BU have with these publishers to make full use of these deals.

For more information, please contact OpenAccess@bournemouth.ac.uk.

 

 

Preprints, what do we know about them?

Source: https://www.aje.com/arc/benefits-of-preprints-for-researchers/

A preprint is a version of a research manuscript published before peer review.  Normally, these are published electronically and made freely available on large databases or preprint servers.  Some of the popular preprint servers include arXiv, PeerJ, The Open Science Framework, OSF Preprints. Preprint servers provide a DOI (Digital Object Identifier) to enable you to link to your work and version control to curate the different versions as you make changes to your manuscript. Publishing a preprint can speed up the process of disseminating your research and avoiding any delays caused by the publication process.

Preprints achieve many of the goals of journal publishing, but within a much shorter time frame. The biggest benefits fall into 3 areas: creditfeedback, and visibility.

Credit – When you post a preprint with your research results, you can firmly stake a claim to the work you’ve done. If there is any subsequent discussion of who found a particular result first, you can point to the preprint as a public, conclusive record of your data. Most preprints are assigned a digital object identifier (DOI), which allows your work to become a permanent part of the scholarly record – one that can be referenced in any dispute over who discovered something first.

Feedback – In the traditional system, a submitted manuscript receives feedback from 2 or 3 peer reviewers before publication. With a preprint, other researchers can discover your work sooner, potentially pointing out critical flaws or errors, suggest new studies or data that strengthen your argument or even recommend a collaboration that could lead to publication in a more prestigious journal.

Visibility – Preprints are not the final form of a research paper for most authors. Thankfully, preprints and infrastructure providers like Crossref link to the final published article whenever possible, meaning that your preprint can serve to bring new readers to your published paper. A study in the Journal of the American Medical Association saw notable increases in citations and Altmetric scores when authors had posted their work first as a preprint.

Normally journal publishers will not accept work that is published or submitted elsewhere.  Journal publishers in subjects where preprints are widely used will accept research that has been previously released as a preprint.   As preprints emerge as a normal part of the publishing process in new subject areas, questions about whether preprints are regarded as previously published are still being worked through.  It would be prudent to check the policies of publishers who may be the ultimate publishers of your research if you choose to publish your research as a preprint.

Journal publishers encourage the publication of preprints after a paper has been accepted. This is the Green Route to Open Access publication.  It is important that the publisher’s policies on preprints after publication / submission are checked on the SherpaRoMEO database.

In recent developments (2017) research funders The Welcome Trust, the Medical Research Council and others have accepted the inclusion of references to preprints in grant applications as evidence of current research activity.

However, there are some crucial points to consider, before you submit your preprint to a server. The preprint guidelines below from Wiley provide some useful points to consider:

  • Posting of a preprint may violate the copyright agreement or understanding held with a publisher. When you submit an article to a journal you are doing so with the implicit understanding that an accepted article will be published and the copyright for that article then transferred to the publisher. It is ethically wrong to post a preprint that has benefitted from the resources of a publishing house (revision after peer review, copy editing, publication on Wiley Online Library, etc.); especially where the revised, accepted article, and final published versions of a paper are concerned.
  • A preprint service provider may ask authors to sign an agreement that prevents publication of the work in a journal later. On ChemRxiv, authors may control the usage rights for their posted preprint with one of three CC BY attribution licenses. When posting on a preprint server, such as ChemRxiv, we recommend that authors retain the rights to their work through use of a non-exclusive license to distribute interim research products (e.g., with a CC-BY-NC-ND or no reuse license), so that their publication options are not limited in any way later on. If an author posts a preprint under one of these licenses, the author can grant the publisher rights to use in a commercial and/or derivative manner because the author has retained those rights.
  • Failure to declare the preprint(s) associated with submission to a journal may be non-compliant with the journal′s Notice to Authors and could be grounds for rejection of a submitted manuscript.
  • Publicity of preprints through media coverage (e.g., press releases) is not advised when publication of the work in a journal is envisaged. Authors run the risk of attracting media attention to the work before it has undergone a thorough peer-review process.

As mentioned above, different publishers have different policies regarding preprints so do check each publisher policy on the SherpaRoMEO database for accurate information.

For more information on preprints, please visit the links below:

https://www.aje.com/arc/benefits-of-preprints-for-researchers/

https://ambulance.libguides.com/c.php?g=661297&p=4671549

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/page/journal/15213773/homepage/preprints

Supporting the Global Society Restart Tourism

Supporting the Global Society Restart Tourism

Academia is not just about teaching students or writing papers. It is about engaging with the widest range of stakeholders, creating and disseminating knowledge and create solutions for the global society. It is all about RELEVANCE and IMPACT, especially at the time of CRISIS. JOIN US ON THESE WEBINARS in the next few days where ever you are and engage in the conversations towards #RestartTourism #ReigniteTourism

GREECE Thursday 18 June 14:15 LondonTime / 16:15 Greek EMEA.gr time IN GREEK

Η πανδημία του COVID-19 και ο ελληνικός τουρισμός

Dimitris Basiliou, Michalis Toanoglou, Dimitrios Buhalis

BRAZIL Thursday 18 June 16:00 Brazil time / 20:00 London time BRAZIL on LiveTur DATASHOW BRASIL IN PORTUGUESE

Impactos do uso das tecnologias de informação na atividade turística durante e pós pandemia

Professor Dimitrios Buhalis with Dr. Luiz Mendes Filho and Dr. Alexandre Augusto Biz

IRAN Sunday 21 June London time 18:30 pm – 20:30pm / Tehran, Iran 10:00pm – 12:00am (GMT+430)

Mohammad Shirkavand discussion – Connecting Cultures & Preserving Heritage: Create Future by Connecting Minds

Professor Dimitrios Buhalis to talk about ”How eTourism could help the industry to survive after the crisis

NEW ZEALAND Wednesday 24th June 21:30-22:30 London Time / Thursday June 25th, 8.30-9.30AM NZ time

Professor Dimitrios Buhalis Smart Tourism in the New Era of Tourism

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington School of Business and Government | Ōrauariki

Upcoming webinars from the British Library

The British Library is planning a series of upcoming webinars which you may find useful and interesting –

How to access digital resources: a free webinar for researchers
Friday 1st May, 10.30-11.30am
Researchers working from home may find now, more than ever, that they cannot access all they need to do their research. This webinar will introduce the concept of open access, and the various tools and resources that enable access to the resources researchers need.
**This will be of particular interest to researchers, so it’d be great if you could circulate locally to your researchers. It will also serve as a general intro to OA for any colleagues wishing to learn about this area of research support.**
Details and sign-up here:https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4784745156984703756

 

The British Library’s Shared Research Repository
Thursday 7th May, 2.30-3.30pm
Creative and cultural organisations require repositories that look good, are attractive to users and support a wide range of non-text research outputs. Join us to learn more about our shared repository for UK cultural heritage organisations.
Details and sign-up here: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5003834943448442636

 

Introduction to research data, data services and DataCite at the British Library (and beyond)
Thursday 14th May, 2.30-3.30pm
This webinar will provide an introduction to research data and how to use persistent identifiers such as DOIs to make research data and other digital outputs like theses and grey literature findable and citable online. This webinar will also provide an introduction to DataCite, an international non-profit organisation, which enables the ability to create DOIs for digital objects.
Details and sign-up here: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6958681955238901260

 

Introduction to EThOS: the British Library database of UK theses
Thursday 21st May, 2.30-3.30pm
The British Library service known as EThOS is effectively a shop window on the amazing doctoral research undertaken in UK universities. With half a million thesis titles listed, you can uncover unique research on every topic imaginable and often download the full thesis file to use immediately for your own research. This webinar will offer a guided walk through the features and content of EThOS, and the research potential for making use of EThOS as a dataset.
**This webinar will be of interest to doctoral students and researchers, so please do advertise locally. It will also be of interest to librarians wishing to learn more about how EThOS works**.
Details and sign-up here: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1072813692823727372

 

Project FREYA: How persistent identifiers can connect research together
Thursday 28th May, 2.30-3.30pm
This webinar will showcase the latest developments from the EC-funded FREYA project, including the PID Graph which provides a method to discover the relationships between different researchers and their organisations and find out the full impact of research outputs. It will also describe upcoming developments planned in the final year of the project such as a Common DOI Search.
Details and sign-up here:https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6895938324199891724

 

Please join the British Library for as many of these as you can. They will all last approximately 25-30 minutes with time for questions.

COVID-19 and the rise of Virtual Conferences

Yesterday we had a conference paper accepted by the EUPHA (European Public Health Association) International Conference.  When the paper was originally submitted to the EUPHA Health Workforce Research Section Mid-term Conference we had opted for an oral presentation in person at the conference in Romania this summer.  However, with the COVID-19 pandemic travelling to Romania to attend this conference is not an option for many (if not most) academics.  Therefore the organising committee took the initiative to re-arrange it as a virtual meeting.   Further good news for us is that participation will be free.

Of course, I am aware that some of the strengths of attending conferences include having unexpected discussions (often in the bar) with fellow academics and being away from the day job.  At the moment being forced to choose between postponing or cancelling a conference or changing to a virtual meeting conference organisers may want to reflect on  “… ask how conferences make a difference.”  This question was  originally raised in the book Academic Conferences as Neoliberal Commodities by Donald Nicholson [1].

We should have moved to more virtual meetings and  online conferences much sooner, but it is easy to say with hindsight!  The COVID-19 crisis has thought us that virtual classrooms, internet-based tutorials, Zoom meetings and online conferences can work, albeit with their limitations.  It is worth considering the return of investment of a conference [2] not just for the conference organisers (and funders) but also  individual academics as less travel will be saving time  and society as reducing  travel, especially international flights, will improve our carbon foot print.

 

Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health (CMMPH)

 

References

  1. Nicholson. D.J. (2017) Academic Conferences as Neoliberal CommoditiesPalgrave Macmillan.
  2. Nicholson. D.J. (2018) Guest post by Donald Nicolson: The problem of thinking about conferences and Return on Investment (ROI) 

 

COVID-19 competition: BU call for Expressions of Interest

On 6 April, BU launched a COVID-19 internal competition, with a call for EoIs. This opportunity is open to all staff. The EoI deadline is at 23.59 on Tuesday, 14 April, and the winners will be announced on Tuesday, 20 April.

There are three modest cash prizes available, sponsored by the National Research Centre for Computer Animation in the Faculty of Media and Communication. Successful ideas will be selected to go forward to a second competition in conjunction with the universities of Southampton and Portsmouth. Building on our close regional relationships with an aligned response to the COVID-19 crisis and attendant calls for relevant research is a priority for all institutions right now. We at BU are committed to joining forces with our neighbours at this time.

BU staff can find more details about the call on the expression of interest form.