Category / PG research

This part of the blog features news and information for postgraduate research students and supervisors

Methodspace highlights BU Academics’ Innovative Approach to Reporting Focus Group Data

‘I’m Her Partner, Let Me In!’ Bringing the Narrative to Academic Papers

Lee-Ann Fenge and Kip Jones

A blog recently requested by the editor of Sage Publications’ Methodspace highlights an article representing focus group data in a new way. In a recent report, two BU Academics, Lee-Ann Fenge and Kip Jones (FHSS), took an inventive approach in writing up their findings in the online journal, Creative Approaches to Research. The Sage editor said, “I thought your paper brought up some good methodology issues”.

The authors believe that as narrative researchers and storytellers we should be promoting narrative in the content and styles of our publications. We can no longer afford to ignore the great advances that have been made in representation of qualitative data in recent history. As narrative researchers, we are natural storytellers and need to keep this in focus when reporting studies, particularly in publications. In this way, as researchers, we move to the background, and the research participants are foregrounded.

The article “I’m her partner, let me in!” in Methodspace can be read here.

CQR announces its Lunchtime “In Conversation” Seminars

The Centre for Qualitative Research presents its annual Lunchtime “In Conversation” Seminars on the first Wednesday of each month at 1p.m. in Royal London House.

This year’s theme is “LISTEN MAKE SHARE”. Each month two CQR members will present their experiences to the audience ‘in conversation’ with either Narrative Methods (listening to stories), Arts-based Research methods (making stories), or Dissemination methods (sharing stories).

Most seminars will involve two conversants and plenty of opportunity for audience participation in listening, making, and sharing. Not lectures, they are two presenters ‘In Conversation” about a topic or method. No PPT and plenty of time for audience interaction and feedback!

The first lunchtime seminar, however, will take place on the second Wednesday, 13 September.

CQR Seminars for the Coming Year

 

 

 

 

Special Edition Policy Update: Sir John Bell report on Life Sciences and the Industrial Strategy

Following our Industrial Strategy update last week, as expected Sir John Bell has published his report for the government on Life Sciences and the Industrial Strategy. There are 7 main recommendations under 4 themes, which are summarised below.

Some interesting comments:

  • The key UK attribute driving success in life sciences is the great strength in university-based research. Strong research-based universities underpin most of the public sector research success in the UK, as they do in the USA and in Scandinavia. National research systems based around institutes rather than universities, as seen in Germany, France and China, do not achieve the same productivity in life sciences as seen in university-focussed systems.” (p22)
  • “The decline in funding of indirect costs for charity research is coupled to an increasing tendency for Research Councils to construct approaches that avoid paying indirect Full Economic Costs (FEC). Together, these are having a significant impact on the viability of research in universities and have led to the institutions raising industrial overhead costs to fill the gap. This is unhelpful.” (p24 and see the recommendation about charitable contributions under “reinforcing the UK science offer” below)
  • “It is also recommended, that the funding agencies, in partnership with major charities, create a high-level recruitment fund that would pay the real cost of bringing successful scientists from abroad to work in major UK university institutions.” (see the proposal to attract international scientists below).
  • On clusters “Life sciences clusters are nearly always located around a university or other research institute and in the UK include elements of NHS infrastructure. However, evidence and experience suggests that governments cannot seed technology clusters28 and their success is usually driven by the underpinning assets of universities and companies, and also by the cultural features of networking and recycling of entrepreneurs and capital.” And “Regions should make the most of existing opportunities locally to grow clusters and build resilience by working in partnership across local Government, LEPs (in England), universities and research institutes, NHS, AHSNs, local businesses and support organisations, to identify and coalesce the local vision for life sciences. Science & Innovation Audits, Local Growth Funds and Growth Hubs (in England), Enterprise Zones and local rates and planning flexibilities can all be utilised to support a vision for life sciences. “ (see the proposal on clusters under “Growth and Infrastructure” – this was a big theme in the Industrial strategy and something we also covered in our Green Paper response)
  • On skills: “ The flow of multidisciplinary students at Masters and PhD level should be increased by providing incentives through the Higher Education Funding Council for England.2 and “Universities and research funders should embed core competencies at degree and PhD level, for example data, statistical and analytical skills, commercial acumen and translational skills, and management and entrepreneurship training (which could be delivered in partnership with business schools). They should support exposure to, and collaboration with, strategically important disciplines including computer and data science, engineering, chemistry, physics, mathematics and material science.”

Health Advanced Research Programme (HARP) proposal – with the goal to create 2-3 entirely new industries over the next 10 years.

  • Establish a coalition of funders to create the Health Advanced Research Programme to undertake large research infrastructure projects and high risk ‘moonshot programmes’, that will help create entirely new industries in healthcare
  • Create a platform for developing effective diagnostics for early, asymptomatic chronic disease.
  • Digitalisation and AI to transform pathology and imaging.
  • Support projects around healthy ageing.

Reinforcing the UK science offer

  • Sustain and increase funding for basic science to match our international competition – the goal is that the UK should attract 2000 new discovery scientists from around the globe
    • The UK should aim to be in the upper quartile of OECD R&D spending and sustain and increase the funding for basic science, to match our international competitors, particularly in university settings, encouraging discovery science to co-locate.
    • NIHR should be supported, with funding increases in line with Research Councils
    • Ensure the environment remains supportive of charitable contributions through enhancing the Charity Research Support Fund (see above for the context for this).
    • Capitalise on UKRI to increase interdisciplinary research, work more effectively with industry and support high-risk science.
    • Use Government and charitable funding to attract up to 100 world-class scientists to the UK, with support for their recruitment and their science over the next ten years.
  • Further improve UK clinical trial capabilities to support a 50% increase in the number of clinical trials over the next 5 years and a growing proportion of change of practice and trials with novel methodology over the next 5 years.
    • Establish a working group to evaluate the use of digital health care data and health systems; to evaluate the safety and efficacy of new interventions; and to help ICH modernise its GCP regulations.
    • Improve the UK’s clinical trial capabilities so that the UK can best compete globally in our support for industry and academic studies at all phases.
    • Design a translational fund to support the pre-commercial creation of clinically-useable molecules and devices.

Growth and infrastructure – the goal is to create four UK companies valued at >£20 billion market cap in the next ten years.

  • Ensure the tax environment supports growth and is internationally competitive in supporting long-term and deeper investment.
    • Address market failures through Social Impact Bonds and encourage AMR research.
    • Consider how UK-based public markets can be used more effectively in the sector.
  • Support the growth of Life Sciences clusters.
    • Government, local partners and industry should work together to ensure the right infrastructure is in place to support the growth of life sciences clusters and networks.
    • UK’s existing clusters should work together and with government to promote a ‘single front door’ to the UK for research collaboration, partnership and investment.
  • Attract substantial investment to manufacture and export high value life science products of the future. – the goal is to attract ten large (£50-250m capital investment) and 10 smaller (£10-50m capital investments) in life science manufacturing facilities in the next five years.
    • Accept in full the recommendations of the Advanced Therapies Manufacturing Action Plan and apply its principles to other life science manufacturing sectors.
    • A programme in partnership with industry to develop cutting-edge manufacturing technologies that will address scale-up challenges and drive up productivity.
    • Optimise the fiscal environment to drive investment in industrial buildings, equipment and infrastructure for manufacturing and late-stage R&D.
    • Consider nationally available financial incentives – grants and loans, or capital allowances combined with regional incentives – to support capital investment in scale-up, and prepare for manufacturing and related export activity.
    • Make support and incentives for manufacturing investment and exporting available to business through a single front door, provide a senior national account manager accountable for delivery and simplify the customer journey.

NHS collaboration – the Accelerated Access Review should be adopted with national routes to market streamlined and clarified, including for digital products. There are two stated goals:

  • The NHS should engage in fifty collaborative programmes in the next 5 years in late-stage clinical trials, real world data collection, or in the evaluation of diagnostics or devices.
  • The UK should be in the top quartile of comparator countries, both for the speed of adoption and the overall uptake of innovative, cost-effective products, to the benefit of all UK patients by the end of 2023.

The recommended actions are

  • Utilise and broaden the Accelerated Access Review to encourage UK investment in clinical and real-world studies. Deliver a conditional reimbursement approval, for implementation as soon as licensing and value milestones are delivered.
  • Create a forum for early engagement between industry, NHS and arms-length bodies (e.g. NICE, MHRA) to agree commercial access agreements.
  • Use the recommendations from the AAR to streamline the processes and methods of assessment for all new products.
  • Value assessments should be evolved in the long-term with improved patient outcome measures, affordability and cost management data beyond one year timeframes.
  • NICE’s funding model for technology evaluation should be set up in a way that does not stifle SME engagement

Data – Establish two to five Digital Innovation Hubs providing data across regions of three to five million people.

  • The health and care system should set out a vision and a plan to deliver a national approach with the capability to rapidly and effectively establish studies for the generation of real world data, which can be appropriately accessed by researchers.
  • ePrescribing should be mandatory for hospitals.
  • NHS Digital and NHS England should set out clear and consistent national approaches to data and interoperability standards and requirements for data access agreements.
  • Accelerate access to currently available national datasets by streamlining legal and ethical approvals.
  • Create a forum for researchers across academia, charities and industry to engage with all national health data programmes.
  • Establish a new regulatory, Health Technology Assessment and commercial framework to capture for the UK the value in algorithms generated using NHS data. A working group should be established to take this forward
  • Two to five digital innovation hubs providing data across regions of three to five million people should be set up as part of a national approach and building towards full population coverage, to rapidly enable researchers to engage with a meaningful dataset. These regional hubs should also have the capability to accelerate and streamline CTA and HRA approvals. One or more of these should focus on medtech.
  • The UK could host 4-6 centres of excellence that provide support for specific medtech themes, focussing on research capability in a single medtech domain such as orthopaedics, cardiac, digital health or molecular diagnostics.
  • National registries of therapy-area-specific data across the whole of the NHS in England should be created and aligned with the relevant charity.

Skills

  • A migration system should be established that allows recruitment and retention of highly skilled workers from the EU and beyond, and does not impede intra-company transfers.
  • Develop and deliver a reinforced skills action plan across the NHS, commercial and third sectors based on a gap analysis of key skills for science.
    • Create an apprenticeship scheme that focuses on data sciences, as well as skills across the life sciences sector, and trains an entirely new cadre of technologists, healthcare workers and scientists at the cutting-edge of digital health.
    • Establish Institutes of Technology that would provide opportunity for technical training, particularly in digital and advanced manufacturing areas.
    • There should be support for entrepreneur training at all levels, incentivising varied careers and migration of academic scientists into industry and back to academia.
    • A fund should be established supporting convergent science activities including cross-disciplinary sabbaticals, joint appointments, funding for cross-sectoral partnerships and exchanges across industry and the NHS, including for management trainees.
    • High quality STEM education should be provided for all, and the government should evaluate and implement additional steps to increase the number of students studying maths to level 3 and beyond

FHSS Research Seminars 2017-2018

The Faculty of Health and Social Sciences Research Seminar Series will be starting again in the coming academic year.

But first I’d like to say a big thank you again to all those who contributed to the seminars last year. We had a wonderful mixture of presentations and it was great to see the range of research going on in the faculty.

We noted that the best attended were those involving a range of presentations in a one hour slot. These bite-size selections of research topics were great in attracting an audience from across disciplines and created a fun, friendly atmosphere.

To build on this in the coming year we will be moving to monthly Research Seminars with 2-3 presenters at each session. These seminars are open to everyone, so whether this is your first venture into research or you are a veteran researcher please feel free to come along and share your experiences.

Seminars will be held on the first Wednesday of every month (second Wednesday in October) between 1 and 2pm at the Lansdowne Campus.

If you are interested in presenting please get in touch with Clare at: ckillingback@bournemouth.ac.uk

Congratulations to Dr. Keen on new Nepal publication

Congratulations to Dr. Steve Keen in the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences and BU PhD graduate Dr. Pratik Adhikary on the acceptance today of their paper ‘Risky work: Accidents among Nepalese migrant workers in Malaysia, Qatar and Saudi ‘ by the journal Health Prospect [1].  This is a peer-reviewed public health journal, part of Nepal Journals Online, and the journal is Open Access.  Nepal Journals OnLine (NepJOL) provides access to Nepalese published research, and increase worldwide knowledge of indigenous scholarship.

The Faculty of Health & Social Sciences has a growing number of publications on health and migration research, especially on the health and well-being of migrants from Nepal [2-5].

 

Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

 

References:

  1. Adhikary, P., Sheppard, Z., Keen, S., van Teijlingen, E. (2017) Risky work: Accidents among Nepalese migrant workers in Malaysia, Qatar and Saudi, Health Prospect (forthcoming)
  2. Adhikary, P., Simkhada, P.P., van Teijlingen E., Raja, AE. (2008) Health & Lifestyle of Nepalese Migrants in the UK BMC International Health & Human Rights 8(6). Web address: www.biomedcentral.com/1472-698X/8/6.
  3. van Teijlingen E, Simkhada, P., Adhikary, P. (2009) Alcohol use among the Nepalese in the UK BMJ Rapid Response: www.bmj.com/cgi/eletters/339/oct20_1/b4028#223451
  4. Adhikary P., Keen S., van Teijlingen, E. (2011) Health Issues among Nepalese migrant workers in Middle East. Health Science Journal 5: 169-175. www.hsj.gr/volume5/issue3/532.pdf
  5. Aryal, N., Regmi, P.R., van Teijlingen, E., Simkhada, P., Adhikary, P., Bhatta, Y.K.D., Mann, S. (2016) Injury and Mortality in Young Nepalese Migrant Workers: A Call for Public Health Action. Asian-Pacific Journal of Public Health 28(8): 703-705.

NERC Early Career Researcher evaluation survey

NERC is undertaking an evaluation of its support for Early Career Researchers (ECRs) to be completed in 2017. This evaluation is the first of its kind to be undertaken by NERC to gain a better understanding of the challenges and issues facing ECRs during this crucial period for their career development.

The outcomes of this evaluation will determine whether current NERC strategy and activities are effective at maintaining a healthy research base for the environmental sciences, and ensuring the training and opportunities available for NERC ECRs are appropriate for facilitating success in the broad range of careers they enter.

The evidence to inform this evaluation will be collected through an online survey developed by market research specialists, DJS Research, NERC, and its advisory boards. The audience for this survey is primarily ECRs within NERC’s remit but it also provides the opportunity for employers of ECRs and other key stakeholders to provide feedback. This survey will be complemented by case study interviews to provide further information concerning the insights arising from the survey and explore in greater depth the challenges facing ECRs.

The online survey will run from 3 August to 2 October 2017 and NERC intends to publish the findings of this evaluation in December 2017.

If you have any queries concerning the ECR Evaluation, please contact researchcareers@nerc.ac.uk

First PhD in Project Management from the Faculty of Management

Yogarajah Nanthagaopan has successfully completed the first PhD in Project Management from the Faculty of Management. He was supervised by Dr Nigel L. Williams and Professor Stephen Page and his thesis was titled: A Resource Based Perspective on Project Management in NGOs. Dr Nanthangaopan has returned to his native Sri Lanka and is the current Head of Economics and Management department and Coordinator for the BBM in Project Management degree program at the Faculty of Business Studies, Vavuniya Campus of the University of Jaffna, Sri Lanka.

Good month for BU reproductive health publications

This month has been exceptionally good for BU publications in the field of midwifery and maternity care.  Two PhD students has their articles published in international academic journals, one member of staff had a textbook chapter published, an interdisciplinary team has been accepted for publication in the British Journal of Midwifery, and a member of the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health (CMMPH) co-authored this month’s editorial in the Journal of Asian Midwives  as well as an epidemiology paper on the HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) in Nepal.  

The first of this success story was CMMP PhD student Preeti Mahato whose  her latest paper ‘Factors related to choice of place of birth in a district in Nepal’ appeared in the Elsevier journal Sexual & Reproductive Healthcare  [1].  The second PhD paper was also based on research in Nepal this time by Sheetal Sharma whose paper ‘Evaluation a Community Maternal Health Programme: Lessons Learnt’ appeared in Journal of Asian Midwives [2].  The textbook chapter was by Dr. Jenny Hall who contributed a chapter to the latest edition of Mayes Midwifery , which is the classic midwifery textbook and now in its 15th edition [3].  The interdisciplinary paper is by Angela Warren, service user and carer coordinator PIER partnership, Dr Mel Hughes, principal academic in social work, academic lead for PIER partnership, and  Dr Jane Fry and Dr Luisa Cescutti-Butler who are both senior lecturers in midwifery in the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health (CMMPH) [4]. The latest issue of the Nepal Journal of Epidemiology carried a CMMPH co-authored paper on the HPV in young women in Nepal [5].   The final piece, an editorial, appeared yesterday in the latest issue of the Journal of Asian Midwives [6].


Congratulations to all authors!

Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

CMMPH

 

References:

  1. Mahato, P., van Teijlingen, E., Simkhada, P., Sheppard, Z., Silwal, R.C. (2017)  Factors related to choice of place of birth in a district in Nepal, Sexual & Reproductive Healthcare 13 : 91-96.
  2. Sharma, S., Simkhada, P., Hundley, V., van Teijlingen, E., Stephens, J., Silwal, R.C., Angell, C. (2017) Evaluation a Community Maternal Health Programme: Lessons Learnt. Journal of Asian Midwives. 4 (1): 3–20.
  3. Hall, J. (2017) ‘Fertility and it’s control’ In: Macdonald, S. & Johnson, G.  Mayes’ Midwifery, 15th Edition,  London: Elsevier.
  4. Warren, A., Hughes, M., Fry, J., Cescutti-Butler, L. (2017) ‘Involvement in midwifery education: experiences from a university service user and carer partnership’ British Journal of Midwifery (forthcoming).
  5. Sathian, B., Babu, MGR., van Teijlingen, E.R., Banerjee, I., Subramanya, H.S., Roy, B., Subramanya, H., Rajesh, E., Devkota, S. (2017) Ethnic variation in perception of Human Papillomavirus and its Vaccination among young women in Nepal, Nepal Journal of Epidemiology 7 (1): 647-658.  http://www.nepjol.info/index.php/NJE/article/view/17757
  6. Jan, R., van Teijlingen, E. (2017) Exciting Times in South-Asian Midwifery, Journal of Asian Midwives 4 (1):1

New publication Sheetal Sharma (PhD graduate 2017)

Congratulations to Sheetal Sharma whose latest article appeared in today’s new issue of Journal of Asian Midwives [1]. Sheetal wrote the paper ‘Evaluation a Community Maternal Health Programme: Lessons Learnt’ with her PhD supervisors Dr. Catherine Angell, Prof. Vanora Hundley, Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen and Prof. Padam Simkhada (Liverpool John Moores University & FHSS Visiting Professor) and the director of Green Tara Nepal Mr. Ram Chandra Silwal and the founder of Green Tara Trust, London, Dr. Jane Stephens. The Journal of Asian Midwives is an Open-Access journal hence this article is freely available across the globe.

(c) Sheetal Sharma

Focus groups in open air in rural Nepal, (c) Sheetal Sharma

 

Reference:

Sharma, S., Simkhada, P., Hundley, V., van Teijlingen, E., Stephens, J., Silwal, R.C., Angell, C. (2017) Evaluation a Community Maternal Health Programme: Lessons Learnt. Journal of Asian Midwives. 4(1): 3–20.

New publication by FHSS PhD student

Congratulations to Faculty of Health & Social Sciences (FHSS) PhD student Folashade Alloh and Dr. Pramod Regmi, newly appointed lecturer in International Health.  They just published ‘Effect of economic and security challenges on the Nigerian health sector’ in the journal African Health Sciences.  The paper is Open Access and can be found here!

Well done!

 

Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

CMMPH

New maternity research paper on Nepal

Congratulations to Preeti Mahato, PhD student in the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health, on the publication of her latest paper ‘Factors related to choice of place of birth in a district in Nepal’ in the Elsevier journal Sexual & Reproductive Healthcare  [1].  The paper based on her research work in Nawalparasi, southern Nepal.  This new paper is the third paper form Preeti’s PhD work [2-3].

 

Reference:

  1. Mahato, P., van Teijlingen, E., Simkhada, P., Sheppard, Z., Silwal, R.C. (2017)  Factors related to choice of place of birth in a district in Nepal, Sexual & Reproductive Healthcare 13 : 91-96.
  2. Mahato, P., van Teijlingen, E., Simkhada, P., Angell, C. (2016) Birthing centres in Nepal: Recent developments, obstacles and opportunities, Journal of Asian Midwives 3(1): 18-30. http://ecommons.aku.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1033&context=jam
  3. Mahato, P.K., Regmi, P.R., van Teijlingen, E., Simkhada, P., Angell, C., Sathian, B. (2015) Birthing centre infrastructure in Nepal post 2015 earthquake. Nepal Journal of Epidemiology 5(4): 518-519. http://www.nepjol.info/index.php/NJE/article/view/14260/11579

FHSS Post-grads score with their story of a study group for Sociological Imagination blog

(l. to r.) Louise Oliver, Jo Thurston, Karen Cooper & Mandy Podee

Four  Health & Social Sciences post-grads (Karen Cooper, Louise Oliver, Mananya Podee & Joanna Thurston), Faculty of Health and Social Sciences, have just published an article in the Sociological Imagination blog.  All at similar stages in the PhD process, they have banded together to form a Methodological Study Group, at the recommendation of their supervisor. In their article for the Sociological Imagination, the four report on:

  1. How the idea for the Methodology Study came about? Had they been involved in any projects like this previously?
  2. Are there elements of method that they share in common? How does this help the group to move forward?
  3. One particularly interesting aspect of the project is their relationship between each other, each other’s work and their own thesis. Have links developed?
  4. What advice would they give to social scientists interested in using a similar study group? How can this format help postgrad students particularly to develop methodology?
  5. How has working in a study group made in easier to return to working alone and in isolation? Or have they found an answer to this in the group process itself?

Supervisor, Dr Kip Jones said, “All four are involved in one way or another under the broad umbrella of Narrative Research. This has been key to providing a platform and common interest to hold the group together and make it a productive one in a very short time.  My job was to suggest the Study Group and format, then stay out of the way. This format has proved successful”.

Read the article here.

Innovative narrative concept now available across several platforms

FHSS’ Prof Lee-Ann Fenge & Dr. Kip Jones

FHSS’ Kip Jones and Lee-Ann Fenge are pleased to announce that their article , “Gift Stories How Do We Retell the Stories that Research Participants Give Us?” is now available across several platforms.  Along with the open-access version from Creative Approaches to Research now being available, it can be downloaded on Academia.edu and BRIAN.

Jones and Fenge comment: “We can no longer afford to ignore the great advances made in representation of qualitative data. These have been overwhelmingly demonstrated by the successes achieved in auto-ethnography, poetic enquiry, ethno-drama, film, Performative Social Science and/or other arts-based efforts in research and dissemination”.

Narrative methods contribute greatly to the advances made in qualitative research. A narrative style should also be promoted in publications and presentations. This study on older LGBT citizens in rural Britain highlights this by means of a report on one part of that study—a Focus Group.

Narrative researchers are natural storytellers and need to foreground this when reporting studies for publication. Qualitative research is always about story reporting and story making, and narrative research (listening to and retelling stories) is a key democratising factor in qualitative social science research.