Category / R & KE Operations

UK Research Office (UKRO) visit to BU on 27th November 2012

BU welcomed Jo Frost, BU’s named contact for the UK Research Office (UKRO). Jo’s presentation was wide-ranging and hugely informative, outlining the current FP7 scheme and the forthcoming Horizon 2020 scheme, which is still going through the consultation process. It is expected that Horizon 2020 will focus on three priorities: ‘Excellent Science’, ‘Industrial Leadership’ and ‘Societal Challenges’. Jo also introduced the new Erasmus for All scheme.

All the slides from the day are available to BU staff only. These slides include many links to useful sources of information, if you would like to take part in the Horizon 2020 consultation or are planning ahead and want to prepare a submission to the many funding streams within this framework. Jo stressed the need to build networks and many suggestions are included in her presentation. These slides also give detailed information on the proposed budget allocations and themes within the three priority areas.

If you would like to enhance your knowledge of changes to EU funding, please refer to Jo’s slides. You can also contact Corrina Dickson, Paul Lynch, Sarah Katon or Emily Cieciura, who can help you develop your EU submissions.

BU staff can view the slides at: I:\R&KEO\Public\RDU\European Related\UKRO 2012 Presentation.

Are we born to yawn?

Yawning consistently poses a conundrum to neurologists and neuroscientists. Increasingly, evidence is found to link neurological disorders through the commonality of yawning episodes and contagious yawning. Despite discrete incidences (such as parakinesia brachialis oscitans) in brain stem ischaemic stroke patients, there is considerable debate over the reasons for yawning, with the mechanism of yawning still not fully understood. Cortisol is implicated in the stress response and fatigue; repetitive yawning may be the link between neurological disorders and with a strong correlation between yawning and a rise in cortisol levels. Evidence has now been found in support of the Thompson Cortisol Hypothesis that proposes cortisol levels are elevated during yawning [1]. Additional data is in press, and further research is planned with longitudinal consideration to neurological disorders such as multiple sclerosis and stroke. Funding for such initiatives is currently being sought.

[1] Thompson, S.B.N., & Bishop, P., 2012. Born to yawn? Understanding yawning as a warning of the rise in cortisol levels: randomized trial. Interactive Journal of Medical Research, 1(5), e4:1-9. Doi:

Fusion Investment Fund – 2012/13 December Round opens today!

The Fusion Investment Fund (FIF) is again opening the three strands currently available to staff!

At c. £3m per annum for the first three years the FIF represents the significant investment that BU is making in the development of staff and students, and the embedding of the Fusion philosophy. 

New Fusion Investment Fund online application form and general FAQ’s can be viewed on the FIF website   

Also launching today is the Erasmus Staff Mobility scheme which has been merged into the Existing Staff Mobility and Networking strand, please see Erasmus Application and Guidance (Word 2010) 

 Follow the links below to be directed to the new strand policy documents as well as the new Application Form:

 Details of the intervention sessions can be seen here. Apply before the deadline on 1st December!

 If you have any questions about the fund do not hesitate to contact Sam Furr FIF Administrator.

The R & KE Operations Team Are Moving!

 Space at Talbot Campus is scarce, so to make room for more student focused activities the R & KE Operations Team will be moving to Melbury House at the end of July.

We are confirming availability of hotdesks in each school to ensure members of the team will continue to be as accessible to Talbot Campus colleagues as possible, we are also incorporating hotdesks in our office in Melbury House which colleagues will be welcome to use.

The move itself will take place between Thursday 26th and Monday 30th July. Access to the team will be limited during this time, so please bear this in mind if you have any pending application deadlines or project needs and make provisions for support in advance where possible.

Many thanks,

The R & KE Operations Team