Category / BU2025

Interdisciplinary Computational and Clinical Approaches at the Edge of Brain Research

We cordially invite you to the 3rd Symposium of the BU Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Research Centre on Wednesday, the 12th of June 2024, from 9:30-13:00 at the Inspire Lecture Theatre, Fusion Building (1st floor).

The symposium is entitled: “Interdisciplinary Computational and Clinical Approaches at the Edge of Brain Research”.

This third symposium revolves around contrasting computational and translational methodologies from a cross-disciplinary standpoint, leveraging synergies between BU and our collaborators in other universities and at the NHS. It is an opportunity for informal discussions on grant proposals and to explore shared interests with our external guests. 

The schedule is as follows:

9:00-9:15. Welcome and Coffee. 

9:30. Keynote talk: Prof. Dr Miguel Maravall (School of Life Sciences, Sussex Neuroscience Centre of Excellence, Sussex University): “What is the function of sensory cortex in a world full of actions? From sensory maps to task-directed responses”. The speaker will be on the screen.

10.20-10:40. Coffee and Discussions.

10:40-11:40. Session I. Integrating Cognitive and Computational Neuroscience.

  • Dr Matteo Toscani (Department of Psychology, BU): “Unsupervised learning of haptic material properties”.
  • Dr Géza Gergely Ambrus (Department of Psychology, BU): “Investigating Face Perception Using Cross-Experiment Multivariate Pattern Analysis of Neural Time-Series Data”.
  • Michal Gnacek (Emteq Labs, Brighton and Centre for Digital Entertainment, BU): “Affect Recognition in Virtual Reality using Physiological Signals and Machine Learning”. The speaker will be on the screen.

11.40 -12.00. Coffee and Discussions.

12.00-13:00. Session II. Interdisciplinary Clinical Approaches and Closing Remarks.

  • Prof. Dr Jonathan Cole (University Hospital Dorset, NHS): “Perception and action; Observations from congenital and acquired deafferentation”.
  • Prof. Dr Caroline Edmunds (Department of Psychological Sciences, University of East London): ”Real-life implications arise from co-occurring memory impairments in children with neonatal hypoxic-ischaemic encephalopathy”.
  • Prof Dr Birgit Gurr (Community Brain Injury and Adult Neuropsychology Services Dorset at Dorset HealthCare University, NHS) and Dr Ellen Seiss (Department of Psychology, BU). “An initial evaluation of the Dynamic Information Processing Programme”.

If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact Ellen Seiss, eseiss@bournemouth.ac.uk or Emili Balaguer-Ballester, eb-ballester@bournemouth.ac.uk. Feel free to forward this information to any colleague or student who may be interested. 

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

Kind regards,

Ellen and Emili, on behalf of all of us.

New Nature paper by IMSET researchers

An internationally significant and ground-breaking paper has appeared in the journal Nature, led by Dr Phil Riris of the Institute for the Modelling of Socio-Environmental Transitions.

The work investigates 30,000 years of population resilience, with contributions from collaborating scholars from 14 institutions in 7 countries. The paper marks a watershed in our understanding of how people in the past adapted to, and overcame, disturbances. It is available in open access.

A schematic diagram of disturbances and population responses

Left: A sketch of an archaeological population time series with downturns and metrics obtained during the analysis. Right: Example types and groups of disturbances noted in the literature.

The key finding of the paper is that land use – the kinds of subsistence practices, mobility regimes, and extent of infrastructure investments – enhanced both how often a population experienced downturns and their ability to recover from them. In particular, agricultural and agropastoral societies in prehistory were especially likely to suffer demographic busts. However, they also displayed an improved ability over time to “bounce back”.

This result has wide-ranging implications for the development of sustainable land use practices, as traditional lifeways may have intrinsic rates of failure “baked into” their function and operation. The paper speculates that, similar to resilient ecosystems or ecological communities, such localised, small-scale, or short-term failures in human socio-environmental systems may contribute to building improved long-term resilience for the system as a whole.

Artistic impression of some of the types of disturbances experienced by ancient societies.

Importantly, these patterns only reveal themselves in the macro-scale comparison of independent case studies, and take multiple decades or even centuries to unfold. Archaeology is the only field able to tackle these timescales systematically, and underscores the value and contribution of the historical sciences to resilience-building and sustainability challenges in the present.

URL: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-024-07354-8

The research was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AH/X002217/1).

 

Interdisciplinary Computational and Clinical Approaches at the Edge of Brain Research

We cordially invite you to the 3rd Symposium of the BU Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Research Centre on Wednesday, the 12th of June 2024, from 9:30-13:00 at the Inspire Lecture Theatre, Fusion Building (1st floor).

The symposium is entitled: “Interdisciplinary Computational and Clinical Approaches at the Edge of Brain Research”.

This third symposium revolves around contrasting computational and translational methodologies from a cross-disciplinary standpoint, leveraging synergies between BU and our collaborators in other universities and at the NHS. It is an opportunity for informal discussions on grant proposals and to explore shared interests with our external guests. The general schedule is as follows:

9:15. Welcome and coffee.

9:30. Keynote talk: Prof. Miguel Maravall, Sussex University.

10.20-10:40. Coffee and grants discussion.

10:40-11:40. Session I. Integrating Cognitive and Computational Neuroscience.

11.40 -12.00. Coffee and grants discussion.

12.00-13:00. Session II. Interdisciplinary Clinical Approaches & Concluding Remarks.

If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact Ellen Seiss, eseiss@bournemouth.ac.uk or Emili Balaguer-Ballester, eb-ballester@bournemouth.ac.uk.

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

Kind regards,

Ellen and Emili, on behalf of all of us.

 

 

 

 

Student numbers in the next decade

In contrast to recent student numbers intake across the country FT has published an article stating that, undergraduate numbers will see a rise in England in the next decade. [APRIL 7 2024. Looming rise in student numbers sparks calls for skills reform in England. Peter Foster and Anna Gross. © The Financial Times Limited 2013. All Rights Reserved].

Total numbers have a direct relation to several factors including but not limited to overseas students, and both financial and planning challenges faced by international students. Various geographical regions for example South and Southeast Asia are conventionally more leaning towards traditional degrees for example engineering and medicine. Particular interest in these degrees is stemmed by primary and secondary education systems, national skill gaps and more widely societal impacts. Despite, a brief decline in the numbers of international students a pattern in terms of various disciplines varies according to available data. In order to attract and sustain international student numbers core engineering and medical/ medicine degrees will remain significant centripetal force.

FT also reported that, this year universities will make a loss on each domestic student unless there is a change in fees policy [APRIL 7 2024. Looming rise in student numbers sparks calls for skills reform in England. Peter Foster and Anna Gross. © The Financial Times Limited 2013. All Rights Reserved]. In addition, a more diverse repositioning in terms of educational provisions is needed, such as strategic priorities for engineering & technology degrees, innovation in delivery models and methods of gradually but completely decoupling from textbooks taught system to a more flexible intuitive, research informed and practice-based education in partnership with industry which is fit for solving real world impact bearing problems. In turn safeguarding graduates’ future, placing their learning experience at the heart of education-research interface to guarantee higher levels of employability and job satisfaction.

HEIs are also facing a challenge in terms of financial sustainability as reported, the sector is struggling to recruit the higher-paying foreign students it relies on to subsidise lossmaking domestic places [FT 07 April 24]. A two-pronged approach would be needed to address these challenges. Firstly, repositioning in terms of facilities and resources to introduce, apply and integrate more state-of-the-art modelling and simulation techniques for practice, practical and experimental elements of teaching in engineering and technology degrees and initiating a phased transition from dependency on conventional hardware tools e.g. expensive machines to realise releasing economies of scale. Secondly, more robust, simpler and well understood parallels and transitioning pathways between HEIs and primary to higher secondary education are needed.

FT added that, “At the same time, government spending on skills will be 23 per cent below 2009—10 levels, according to analysis by the Institute for Fiscal Studies think-tank.” [APRIL 7 2024. Looming rise in student numbers sparks calls for skills reform in England. Peter Foster and Anna Gross. © The Financial Times Limited 2013. All Rights Reserved]. Collaborating closely with industrial partners and stakeholders’ skills gaps can be strategically prioritised for medium to long term needs, and educational provisions would need reshaping to integrate with research portfolio, UNSDGs, socio-economic, environmental impacts and relevant REF Unit of Assessment (UoA).

FT reported that, “The apprenticeship levy introduced in 2017 has also failed to deliver the expected boost to training, according to London Economics.” [APRIL 7 2024. Looming rise in student numbers sparks calls for skills reform in England. Peter Foster and Anna Gross. © The Financial Times Limited 2013. All Rights Reserved]. This is an important pathway for filling the skill shortages and also bridging the gap between theory and practice. A steady rise in flexible learning engineering degree students’ numbers, have been observed. These students are industry professionals who join these degrees at L5/6 level for a BEng/MEng flexible learning program. In addition to academic benefits these professionals achieve academic benchmark qualifications for professional registrations with professional institutions. This is one of the best available models to address skill shortages with a flexible high-quality delivery and academic provisions underpinned by research.

A stronger and broader engineering sector in collaboration with industry partners and professional institutions to develop futuristic engineering degrees to contribute to economic growth and its sustainability with an upward trajectory to address real concerns that, “tackling (of) the UK’s entrenched skills shortages and low economic productivity.” [APRIL 7 2024. Looming rise in student numbers sparks calls for skills reform in England. Peter Foster and Anna Gross. © The Financial Times Limited 2013. All Rights Reserved] is important.

Telescopic Electrochemical Cell (TEC) for Non-Destructive Corrosion Testing of Coated Substrate. Patent number GB2018/053368

FT also mentioned in its latest article that, “Policymakers should also remove the cap on FE college places in order to “level up” education, (Lord Jo Johnson), added, providing more opportunities.” [APRIL 7 2024. Looming rise in student numbers sparks calls for skills reform in England. Peter Foster and Anna Gross. © The Financial Times Limited 2013. All Rights Reserved]. This can be looked into within the context of above-mentioned points in terms of establishing more defined parallels between HEIs and from primary to higher secondary education. A rethink to consider schools’ post code model for HEIs entry will help in levelling up.

Keywords: education, numbers, overseas students, engineering, skills, industry, professions.

 

Zulfiqar A Khan

Professor of Design, Engineering & Computing

NanoCorr, Energy & Modelling Research Group Lead

Email: zkhan@bournemouth.ac.uk

 

British Council funded BU project SUNRISE on sustainability research: three upcoming events

SUNRISE (Supporting ­­­University Network for Research in Sustainability Engagement) is a British Council funded managed by BU in collaboration with Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM).

The project aims at inspiring and building capacity for sustainability research through hybrid cross-institutional student mobility events. Particularly, it focuses on leveraging student online and hybrid mobility to build capacity for research on sustainability and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

To achieve this, we will be hosting three cross-institutional hybrid conferences celebrating sustainability research carried out by staff, and undergraduate and postgraduate students in both universities. These will be demonstrating research addressing local and global challenges on five key themes:

 

Food nutrition and eating behaviour (SDG 2, 3, and 12)

Gender equality (SDG 5) 

Tourism and Hospitality (SDGs 3, 10, 12)  

Sustainability marketing and communication (all SDGs)  

Sustainability and employability (SDG 4, 5 and 8)  

 

The events will be delivered following the following schedule:

17 April 2024, 8-10 am (UK time) - researchers from both BU and USM will introduce the work they carry out on the themes above

9 May 2024, 8-10 am  (UK time) – we will host a student conference including live presentations and a virtual multimedia exhibition of UG and PG student research related to global challenges

Autumn 2024 - we will host a PGR conference including live presentations and a virtual multimedia exhibition of research related to global challenges

All events in the series will be run in a hybrid mode, i.e. they will be in-person at both the partner campuses with a virtual link between both universities capturing keynote presentations, online panel sessions and live pitches for research collaboration.

At BU, the project is managed by Dr Milena Bobeva (BUBS), Dr Reena Vijayakumaran (HSS), Prof Fiona Cownie (FMC), Dr Roberta Discetti (BUBS), and  Dr Daisy Fan (BUBS). Our partners at Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) are Dr Vina Tan Phei Sean and Assoc Prof. Ng Theam Foo.

 

Socio-Ecological Transition Seminars – Spring 2024 events

We are delighted to share the spring 2024 calendar for our Socio-Ecological Transition Seminars (SETS). This seminar cycle’s discussions will revolve around the global crisis of waste and the unsustainability of current modes of production and consumption, analysed across sectors and geographical contexts, in its societal, organisational, political, and ethical dimensions.

We have a confirmed calendar of international distinguished speakers:

April 3rd h 3 pm: A public sociology of waste, Myra Hird

Myra J. Hird, Professor in Environmental Studies at Queen’s University (Canada). Myra holds a PhD from Oxford University and is a distinguished interdisciplinary scholar researching the global waste crisis and will present her recent book A Public Sociology of Waste (2022, Bristol University Press).

April 24th h 3 pm: Recycling Class: The Contradictions of Inclusion in Urban Sustainability, Manisha Anantharaman

Manisha Anantharaman, Assistant Professor of Sociology at the Center for the Sociology of Organisations, Sciences Po Paris (France). Manisha holds a PhD from University of California Berkeley, and her research focuses on the politics of ecological transition and sustainability. Manisha will present her recent book Recycling Class. The Contradictions of Inclusion in Urban Sustainability (2024, MIT press).

29th May h 3 pm: The Social Life of Unsustainable Mass Consumption, Magnus Boström.

Magnus Boström, Professor of Sociology at the Center for Environmental and Sustainability Social Science (CESSS) at Örebro University, Sweden. Magnus’ research interests include politics, representation, consumption, action, and transformative learning in relation to various transnational environmental and sustainability issues. Magnus will present his recent book: The Social Life of Unsustainable Mass Consumption (2023, Rowman & Littlefield)

All seminars are online on Zoom:

https://unitn.zoom.us/j/85334570893Meeting ID: 853 3457 0893

Passcode: SETS

SETS is a joint initiative between the Research Group on Collective Action, Change, and Transition at the University of Trento, the Centre for Sustainable and Socially Responsible Consumption at Bournemouth University, and the Environmental Sociology Section at the University of Orebro. The seminars are open to a diverse audience, including academics, students, practitioners, social movements, and the non-specialist public.

SETS aims at reflecting with critical instruments and theories on socio-ecological transformations in times of crisis – with a special focus on everyday life and the sphere of social and ecological reproduction. In particular, the seminars aim at eliciting reflection on the different practices and “fields” where struggles and transformative action take place. The seminars are open to a diverse audience, including academics, students, practitioners, social movements, and non-specialist public.

Dr Roberta Discetti, SETS co-founder

Embedding Fairtrade in teaching and research: a panel discussion with the Fairtrade Foundation

Dear all,

As part of our BU Fairtrade weeks 2024, we are delighted to invite you to a panel discussion dedicated to academics with an interest in sustainability, to explore connections with Fairtrade through collaboration with the Fairtrade Foundation.  

Date: February 27th at 2 pm – Fusion Building, room F305 (in-person only event).

BU is a Fairtrade University; we received the accreditation in 2022 with the highest possible score (3 stars out of 3) and we are among a very small group of universities worldwide to have achieved this. There are plenty of ways for academics to get involved with Fairtrade that will be explored in a panel discussion with the following speakers: 

Elena Fernandez-Lee, Education Campaigning Manager at the Fairtrade Foundation: Elena will talk about the Fairtrade University scheme, discussing best practices to embed Fairtrade in teaching and research, and highlighting potential areas of collaboration with BU academics. Elena will also share about the Foundation’s new campaigns about climate justice and decolonization of the curriculum, and outline ways for BU academics to get involved. 

Izzy Chalk, BU Sustainability Officer: Izzy will talk about BU’s journey to becoming accredited as a 3-star Fairtrade university, outlining best practices in embedding Fairtrade in the curriculum and emphasising further areas of collaboration between the Sustainability team and BU academics. 

Dr Roberta Discetti, BU Fairtrade academic representative: Roberta will share some research-informed practices related to Fairtrade engagement, including NGO/academics cooperation, student co-creation, and multi-stakeholder collaborative initiatives. 

The panel discussion will be followed by an optional 30-minute networking where we will have the opportunity to connect with our guest speaker Elena and discuss different ways of expanding the integration of Fairtrade in sustainability teaching and research. This event is open to all BU and AUB academics, to maximise opportunities for collaboration across departments and faculties.

Digital Marketing Colloquium 2024-Submission Deadline 15/02/2024

We are extremely excited to announce that digital marketing research group (Department of Marketing, Strategy and Innovation) is organising its first digital marketing colloquium on Tuesday 19th – Wednesday 20th March 2024 at the Bournemouth University Business School. 

This colloquium will bring together leading researchers and practitioners to discuss and visualise the future of strategic and operational marketing. Both technology advancements and marketing developments will be explored, co-creating future innovations for collaboration and solutions. The aim is to draw in forward-thinking research on crucial subjects that have an impact on consumers, businesses, and society as a whole. Participants will be encouraged to stimulate fresh perspectives and explore uncharted territories.   

This is an multi and inter-disciplinary event, scope of which covers the following indicative areas:  

  • Digital business process reengineering 
  • Digital consumption, behaviour, attitudes, and decision-making 
  • Digital ecosystems: strategies and operations 
  • Digital Twins  
  • Virtual Real Estate  
  • Enhanced social web3, virtual and hybrid interactions  
  • AI in Business and Industry 
  • Predictive analytics 
  • Machine Learning and Algorithms  
  • AI Supply chain optimisation 
  • AI based Customer Relationship Management 
  • Virtual experiences  
  • Designing immersive and illusive experience in the Metaverse and Web3 
  • Interactive and engaging user experiences  
  • Gamification and serious gaming  
  • Business models and opportunities  
  • Future of Work  
  • Education, training and adaptive learning 
  • Creativity and design in AI  
  • Blockchains and smart contracts, cryptocurrencies, NFTs  
  • Digital Identity: opportunities and challenges  
  • CyberSecurity and customer experience  
  • Wearable technology  
  • Human-robot interaction 
  • Robotics and Automation design 
  • Robot based services  
  • Chatbots and virtual assistants  
  • Autonomous vehicles and drones 
  • Environment, climate, energy optimization and sustainability  
  • Ethical, legal and social implications  
  • Health and wellbeing.  

 We welcome submissions in the form of abstracts for presentations, posters and workshop proposals. Workshop proposals are an interesting element we wish you to consider – workshops are meant to run a related to Colloquium theme interactive session on a specific topic to stimulate participants to co-create future scenarios or solutions, work interactively on an emerging topic and exchange ideas. Please see the detailed Call for Papers attached here.  Deadline for all submissions is 15th Feb 2024 and abstracts for presentations and posters as well as workshop proposals can be submitted by clicking here   

We will keep you in the loop about further developments on this colloquium and will share all the links for submission systems soon. Watch this space and save the date 😊 

Digital Marketing Colloquium 2024 Organising Committee 

 

 

New book about EDI in health and biomed research careers is out!

Dr Ola Thomson of BUBS, People and Organisations, is pleased to announce her new book: “Nurturing equality, diversity and inclusion: Support for research careers in health and biomedicine”. The book is available as open access which means you can read it free of charge via Bristol University Press (Policy Press) – link here: https://bristoluniversitypress.co.uk/nurturing-equality-diversity-and-inclusion.

You can also order a hard copy of the book with 50% off until 21 January using code JAN50 at the checkout.

The book is co-authored with Prof. Rachael Gooberman-Hill of the Elizabeth Blackwell Institute for Health Research at the University of Bristol. The volume provides an overview of the state of EDI in research careers in health and biomedicine in the UK, and offers innovative organisational and individual strategies to nurture diversity in research institutions.

Today’s academic and research institutions recognise the importance of diverse research teams in health and biomedical science, in terms of the business case, social justice and the common good. This ‘go-to’ book familiarises readers with the key equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) issues in relation to research careers and researcher development. Bringing together the challenges and solutions to EDI matters with an evidence-based approach in one volume, the book offers practical strategies and interventions for academic and research settings. This is an essential guide for equality planning team members, researchers, HRM officers and managers across academia and research.