Category / Research news

Dr Zulfiqar Khan is elected as Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers

Dr Zulfiqar Khan, School of Design, Engineering and Computing, has achieved the status of Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (FIMechE).

 

The title is the highest elected grade of membership within the IMechE. Fellowship is awarded to members who have demonstrated significant individual responsibility, sustained achievement and exceptional professionalism during their careers.

This is an excellent achievement – congratulations Zulfiqar! 😀

Investigating Academic Impact event at LSE on 13 June

The LSE Public Policy Group is running a free one day event on evidencing the impact of research.

Date: Monday 13 June 2011 
Time: 10-5pm 
Venue:  New Academic Building, LSE, London

Academics are increasingly being pressed to provide evidence of impact from their research on the world outside academia. And universities will have to provide evidence of impact as part of the new Research Excellence Framework. But there is confusion about the different definitions of impact that exist amongst funding bodies and research councils, and also about methods of measuring impact.

This one day conference will look at a range of issues surrounding the impact of academic work on government, business, communities and public debate. We will discuss what impact is, how impacts happen and innovative ways that academics can communicate their work. Practical sessions will look at how academic work has impact among policymaking and business communities. Also how academic communication can be improved and how individual academics can easily start to asses their own impact.

PANELS:
Research Impact and the REF
Professor Rick Rylance (Chief Executive, Arts and Humanities Research Council)
David Sweeney (Director of Research, Innovation and Skills, HEFCE)
Professor Paul Wiles (Panel Chair, social work and social policy panel, REF impact pilot)

Current Thinking in Assessing Impact
Professor Patrick Dunleavy (Impact of Social Sciences project, London School of Economics)
Professor Alan Hughes (Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge)
Tomas Ulrichsen (Public and Corporate Economic Associates)

Innovative Methods for Impact and Engagement
Professor Stephen Curry (blogger, Imperial College London)
Martyn Lawrence (Senior Publisher, Emerald Insight)
Paul Manners (Director, National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement, UWE)
Mike Peel (Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics / Wikimedia UK)

BREAKOUT SESSIONS:
Academic impact on policy-making
Maria O’Beirne (Analysis and Innovation Directorate, Department for Communities and Local Government)
Jill Rutter (Better Policy Making Programme Director, Institute for Government)

Knowledge transfer and the role of research mediators
Nick Pearce (Director, IPPR)
Professor Judy Sebba (University of Sussex)

Academic impacts on industry and business
James John (Director of Strategy, director of strategy, civil government, HP)

A ‘how to’ guide to measuring your own academic impact
Jane Tinkler (Impact of Social Sciences project, London School of Economics)

Improving academic communication
Professor Patrick Dunleavy (Impact of Social Sciences project, London School of Economics)
Chris Gilson (Managing Editor, British Politics and Policy blog, London School of Economics)

This event is free and open to all but pre-registration is required. For more information phone and email the PPG team on 020 7955 6064 or 020 7955 6731 or by email on impactofsocialsciences@lse.ac.uk|. You can find more information on the Investigating Academic Impact website.

its official – the arts & humanities make a significant contribution to the UK economy

New research shows that the arts and humanities make a significant contribution to the UK economy in part thanks to researchers being so highly connected with UK businesses. Commissioned by the AHRC and undertaken by the Centre for Business Research (CBR) at the University of Cambridge the report, Hidden Connections: Knowledge exchange between the arts and humanities and the private, public and third sectors, has surveyed over 3500 academics in the Arts and Humanities as well as over 2,500 businesses in all sectors of the UK economy as part of the study.

BU Research Impact event is a success!

Last Friday BU held an internal Research Impact event to share the success of the excellent research that has been undertaken by BU academics. The focus of the event was on how this research has had an impact outside of academia, for example an impact on society, the economy, quality of life, culture, policy, etc.

REF logoFor the forthcoming REF2014 BU will be required to include a number of research impact case studies as part of the submission. This is a new element to the REF (previously the RAE) and the HE sector has been grappling with the concept of impact for a number of years now.

The event, attended by over 75 BU staff, opened with a presentation from Prof Matthew Bennett (Pro Vice Chancellor – Research, Enterprise and Internationalisation) on BU’s future research strategy, planning for the REF, and how to develop and evidence research impact.

Part of the presentation focused on the BU Research Themes which are currently being identified and defined through academic consultation via the Research Blog. This is still in the early stages but Matthew presented the ten draft themes that are emerging. You can comment on the emerging themes here.

There were 35 impact case studies presented in total with most units of assessment (UOAs) presenting three case studies. At the end of each presentation members of the audience critiqued the case study and offered advice as to how the strengthen and maximise the impact claim.

Attendees were encouraged to go to impact case study presentations from different UOAs/Schools to find out about research that is undertaken in different areas of the University. Stronger impact case studies can also be developed with input from different disciplines.

The event was also attended by key staff from Marketing & Communications who will be working with UOA Leaders to develop and enhance impact case studies between now and the REF submission in autumn 2013.

There has been much positive feedback received from attendees and we are considering whether this should now be an annual event, celebrating the success of BU research and its benefit to society.

Many thanks to all the presenters and attendees, and everyone who supported the event and made it such a success! 😀

We are now seeking feedback on the impact case studies presented. These are all available on the I-drive (I:\CRKT\Public\RDU\REF\REF event May 2011\impact case study presentations). Please could you email your feedback to Anita Somner in the Research Development Unit by Friday 3 June. Anita will then anonymise and collate the feedback and share it with the UOA Leaders.

For further information on impact see the impact pages on the HEFCE website or our previous BU Research Blog posts on impact.

Eggs-citing new research engine and funding competition launched – CRACK-IT

 CRACK-IT®, is a new research engine and funding competition being launched by the NC3Rs  this year to connect academic and industrial researchers in solving global scientific challenges associated with animal models in the biosciences – focusing on improving efficiency and translation and minimising reliance on in vivo research.

A number of regional roadshows to launch CRACK-IT® and highlight the range of funding opportunities . A range of industry speakers  will discuss the current challenges in pharmaceutical and chemical development and the move towards open innovation and new mechanisms for collaboration. See CRACK-IT® for further details .

Upcoming Missenden Centre workshops – book your place now!

The Missenden Centre still has places available on two excellent workshops in June. The Research Development Unit has some funds available to support academics and research support staff to attend. If you are interested please contact Julie Northam in the first instance.

Successful bidding: second of our day clinics
2nd June
Woburn House, Tavistock Square, London WC1H 9HQ
Tutor: John Wakeford
Bring a draft or previously unsuccessful application for advice on how to turn it into an award-winning form.
http://www.missendencentre.co.uk/s8.htm

Bidding for research funding: pathways to success
15/16 June for academics and
16/17 June for research support staff
With Sarah Andrew, Dean of Applied and Health Sciences, University of Chester
Robert Crawshaw, Faculty of Arts and Social Science, Lancaster University
‘The course was excellent. I think it will probably change my entire approach to writing grant proposals and will most wholeheartedly recommend it to my colleagues. So, once again, many thanks.’  Dr. Miriam V. Dwek, Senior Lecturer in Biochemistry, University of Westminster.
http://www.missendencentre.co.uk/s7.htm

Book your place now!

HEFCE and RCUK work together on open access publishing

open access logo, Public Library of ScienceHEFCE and Research Council UK (RCUK) have today committed to work together to make open access to published research a reality.

Open access publishing turns the traditional publishing route (readers paying subscriptions to publishers) on its head as researchers pay a fee to the publisher to publish their research and in turn the publisher makes the article available free of charge to readers immediately on publication. This enables research findings to be shared with a wider public audience thus increasing the visibility and potential impact/influence of the research findings.

Read the full story here – http://www.hefce.ac.uk/news/hefce/2011/rcuk.htm

BU has recently launched the BU Open Access Publication Fund. For further information read our previous post on the new fund.

Earlier this week SAS launched a short survey on attitudes towards open access publishing. Read more and take part in the survey here.

The excellent HEFCE REF event at BU!

Developing and Assessing Impact for the REF

Last week BU hosted a HEFCE-supported event for universities in the south of England outlining recent changes in how the quality of research in higher education is assessed.

The event, attended by over 150 delegates from 39 institutions, outlined the new Research Excellence Framework (REF) which includes a new assessment element focusing on research impact.

As Chris Taylor, Deputy REF Manager for HEFCE, explained: “REF will provide accountability for public investment in research and demonstrate its benefits.” He continued:

“Impact is defined as any contribution the research makes outside of academia. It is the higher education sector’s opportunity to shout about what it contributes to society.”

Professor Peter Taylor-Gooby (University of Kent), Professor Roy Harrison (University of Birmingham), Professor James Goodwin (Age UK), Dr Kathryn Monk (Environment Agency Wales) and Dr Mari Williams (RCUK) presented their experiences of assessing impact case studies in the REF pilot exercise. Professor Jim Griffiths (University of Plymouth) presented his experience of identifying and submitting impact case studies to the pilot exercise in the hope that others would learn from his experience.

Prevalent themes emerging from the pilot included the importance of a demonstrable chain of evidence from impact claim through to outcome, high quality research underpinning the impact claim and fostering the crucial relationship between academic and user.

Professor James Goodwin explained how research can change society for people’s benefit, stessing the importance of “converting research into a message that will influence people’s thinking”. He gave the recent removal of the default retirement age as an example of how this can influence policy.

The event closed with a Q&A session with all speakers, giving delegates the chance to obtain further clarity on the REF that will undoubtedly change the future of higher education research.

Matthew Bennett (BU’s PVC for Research, Enterprise and Internationalisation) said: “There has been sector-wide concern about how impact will be defined, collated and assessed in the REF, and this event provided excellent advice and guidance for academic staff likely to be submitting to the REF and those leading the submissions.”

The deadline for submitting submissions is November 2013 and the assesment will be made in 2014.

We will be adding further posts to the Research Blog focusing on the good practice shared at the event (such as defining impact, what makes a strong impact case study, etc) over the next few weeks.

World Experts meet to determine future direction of soil carbon monitoring and reporting

A workshop organised by the BBSRC brought together top scientists from around the world to plan the future direction of standards and methodologies in the area of soil carbon monitoring and reporting. This will make a significant contribution to our knowledge of the role of soil in addressing climate change.
Outputs of the workshop will be a series of scientific papers outlining  the challenges and opportunities of soil carbon monitoring in the context of biomass production. This will help to inform sustainable management of changing land use, as well as any shift towards biomass crops within agriculture; contribute to the future direction of research in this area; and help to inform policy for sustainability. It is likely that opportunities will emerge from this work to improve the overall sustainability of bioenergy and an improved appreciation of the flux of carbon into and out of the soil will complement our increasing knowledge of the roles of genetics, physiology and agronomic traits of bioenergy crops.

International panel praises quality of UK psychology research

The ESRC, British Psychological Society (BPS), the Experimental Psychology Society (EPS) and the Association of Heads of Psychology Departments (AHPD) agreed in 2009 to work in partnership to benchmark the quality and impact of research in the UK against international standards.
The Panel’s headline finding is that, overall, the quality of UK psychology research is very high, bettered only by psychology research from the USA and in a substantial number of areas, UK psychology research is unsurpassed anywhere in the world. The Panel’s view is corroborated both by the outcome of the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise and bibliometric analysis.Read more on the ESRC webpage.

Drive knowledge flow, influence, network and get insider information with Knowledge Transfer Networks

Knowledge Transfer Networks (KTNs) act as a single national network in a specific field, bringing together businesses and academics to stimulate innovation through knowledge transfer. By joining a Technology Strategy Board’s KTN you can help drive the flow of knowledge both within and in-and-out of specific communities and improve your ability to network, keep up to date with the very latest information and news, funding opportunities, policy, regulation and strategy. KTNs exist in many different areas so why not join one today?  Aerospace, Aviation and Defence, Biosciences, Creative Industries, Digital, Electronics, Sensors, Photonics, Energy Generation and Supply, Environmental Sustainability, Financial Services, FP7UK, HealthTech and Medicines, ICT, Industrial Biotechnology, Materials

Our jazzy new EU tab!

Some of you sharp-eyed bloggers may have noticed we have a brand new EU tab.  This marks the Research Development Unit’s dedication to increasing the awareness of EU funding and supporting you to maximise networking opportunities. The EU blog will feature essential information including networking events, forthcoming information days, key policy changes, internal workshops and of course calls for proposals.

All stories from this tab will feature in our snazzy daily digest email so make sure you’ve signed up so you don’t miss out!

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Networking Opportunities at BU conference

The 4th International Conference on Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship (Global Vision, Local Action), is taking place on the 8th and 9th September at the Executive Business Centre . This conference will provide a great opportunity for staff development and an excellent platform for staff to network and engage with like-minded academics for potential research collaborations.

BU Studentship Competition 2011

We are delighted to announce that up to 20 match-funded studentships are available for October 2011, or January 2012 starts.  These will be allocated to project teams on the basis of a competitive process across the whole of BU led by Professor Matthew Bennett (PVC Research, Enterprise & Internationalisation) and the Graduate School.  Only the best projects will be funded and proceed to advert as set out in the criteria below.  Preference will be given to those projects demonstrating match-funding, however exceptionally innovative or timely projects on a non-applied theme will be considered for full funding.  Applications should be submitted to Fiona Knight (Graduate School Manager) no later than the 13 June 2011.  Staff are asked to check the eligibility criteria carefully before applying.  Good luck!

Studentship Competition: Details & Criteria

  • Preference will be given to matched funded projects
  • Matched-funding (50%; £21k over three years) may come from: industry/business partners, government and non-government organisations, Academic Schools, NHS, Research Councils or other external bodies.  In seeking match-funding and developing the associated projects applicants are encouraged to avoid a local or regional focus.
  • Exceptionally 100% funding may be granted for highly original, timely and non-applied or “blue-sky” research projects especially where they are strategic importance to a research group/centre.
  • All projects should be linked to a REF Unit of Assessment and map on to its strategic goals.  They must be endorsed by the applicants Line Manager and Head of Academic Group or Deputy Dean (Research & Enterprise).
  • All projects should be innovative, novel and applicants are encouraged to appeal to the imagination of the assessment panel.
  • The first supervisor should take responsibility for the applications and ensure that they meet the eligibility criteria set out below.
  • Studentships are offered on a stipend basis for 36 months only, with fees waived for the same period.  Fees will be charged after 36 months.  Schools (or match funder) are responsible for providing each studentship with a guaranteed grant of between £3k and £5k over 36 months for use by the student to support fieldwork, consumables and conference travel. 
  • Normal studentship terms and conditions will apply.
  • Applications will be assessed and awards made by a panel chaired by: Vice Chancellor – Professor John Vinney and consisting of: Deputy Vice Chancellor – Professor Tim McIntyre-Bhatty, Pro-Vice Chancellor – Professor Matthew Bennett, and three Senior Grade 2 Professors.  None of the panel members are eligible to apply for support.
  • Feedback on all applications will be provided to encourage proposal development.
  • Once awarded all Studentships will be advertised and subject to a recruitment process managed by the Graduate School.  Note that these funds cannot be used to support BU staff to complete doctoral programmes.

 

Eligibility Criteria

  • The first supervisor should be the person completing the application and must be a permanent member of academic BU staff.
  • The first supervisor should be an experienced supervisor defined as having successfully supervised an entire cycle of a research degree or successfully completed the full PG CERT Research Degree Supervision.
  • The first supervisor should be research active, and be in consideration for the REF submission.
  • The applicant should be supervising no more than 6 PGR students including this project.
  • All proposals should have a balanced supervisory team.

 

Indicative Timetable

It is envisaged that projects will start in October 2011 or January 2012, as such

  • It is envisaged that projects will commence either in October 2011 or January 2012.
  • The call for proposals will go live on the 16 May 2011 via the BU Research Blog.
  • In late May 2011, a generic “teaser” advertisement campaign (e.g., banner in THES or Guardian) will run announcing forthcoming studentships at BU encouraging potential applicants to watch the website.
  • The call for proposals will close 11.30 AM on the 13 June 2011.  Submission to the Graduate School Manager who will circulate to the judging panel for consideration.  The panel will score each proposal and meet formally to select the successful projects.  
  • Successful applicants will be informed on the 27 June 2011.  Unsuccessful applicants will be provided with formative feedback in the following two weeks. 
  • Full marketing campaign to be launched on the 27 June and projects advertised externally.
  • Closing date for all student applications will be 31 July 2011 using the standard application form and submitted to the Graduate School.  The Graduate School will manage the recruitment process.
  • Interview days for all October project starts will take place in August.  If an October start is proposed the first supervisor must ensure their availability during August to conduct the interviews.  All interview panels will be consist of a member of the selection panel, first supervisor and a Professor from the host School and will be arranged and managed by the Graduate School.  UEG approval of candidates is required and formal offer letters will be issued by the Graduate School.
  • Interview days for all January project starts will take place in September.  All interview panels will be consist of a member of the selection panel, first supervisor and a Professor from the host School and will be arranged and managed by the Graduate School.  UEG approval of candidates is required and formal offer letters will be issued by the Graduate School.
  • Project Start Date 1; 3 October 2011
  • Project Start Date 2; 9 January 2012

 

Proposal forms can be downloaded from here or email the Graduate School Manager.

International Conference on Culinary Arts and Sciences 2011

The International Conference on Culinary Arts and Sciences 2011 was held at BU from 12-14th April. Here Dr Heather Hartwell shares the conference successes…

The very successful International Conference on Culinary Arts and Sciences has just closed and attracted a wide range of international participants from 19 countries. The idea for such a conference was first discussed in late 1993 when the Worshipful Company of Cooks of London established a Centre for Culinary Research at Bournemouth University.  At the time it was felt there was a need for a forum that could bring together culinary artists and scientists who could present their research and generally discuss ideas within multidisciplinary and relaxed surroundings.  These initial thoughts led to the first Conference (ICCAS) which was held at BU in 1996.  It proved to be so successful that further conferences were held at BU in 1998, the University of Cairo, Egypt in 2001, Örebro University, Sweden in 2003, Warsaw Agriculture University, Poland, in 2005 and finally the Norwegian Hotel School, University of Stavanger in 2008.

Since its inception, the conference theme has always been Culinary Arts and Culinary Sciences.  The food and foodservice industries are a large and integral part of most economies but in academia they are invariably treated as separate and distinct disciplines.  These operate in isolation, often blissfully unaware of what each other are doing.  The primary purpose, therefore, has and continues to be to breakdown barriers which might exist and bring talented people together so that each can see, not only what the other is doing, but also to foster a better understanding of some of the issues, problems and concerns they have.  The programme in addition to developing the central thrust of the Conference, that is combining culinary arts and science, also delivered;

Foodservice (Catering and Hospitality)
Topics included: menus, menu planning, food variety and choice, foodservice in society, education, foodservice work and culture.
Food and Cultural Tourism
Topics included: wine and beer tourism and the various interactions between food, drink, culture and identity.
Nutrition, Food Science and Technology
Topics included: foodservice provision particularly with vulnerable groups, wellbeing and food safety.
Food Marketing, Food Habits and Consumer Behaviour
Topics included: eating and drinking habits and the interactions between food, drink and hospitality.

All submissions were subject to peer review by members of the International Scientific Advisory Board and we are grateful for their time and support.

International Scientific Advisory Board:
Prof. John S.A. Edwards, Bournemouth University, UK
Prof. Christina Fjellström, Uppsala University, Sweden
Dr Agnes Giboreau, Institut Paul Bocuse, France
Prof. Barbara Kowrygo, Warsaw Agricultural University, Poland
Prof. Svein Larsen, University of Bergen, Norway, & University of Stavanger, Norwegian School of Hotel Management
Prof. Herbert L. Meiselman, US Military, USA
Prof. Bent Egberg Mikkelsen, Aalborg University, Denmark
Dr Sara S.P. Rodrigues, Oporto University, Portugal
Assoc Prof. Peter Williams, University of Wollongong, Australia

We have always prided ourselves, and others have followed, by being able to publish delegates’ papers to coincide with the start of the conference.  So very often, conference papers never see the light of day until years after the event.  Once again we have published the refereed papers (ISBN 978-1-85899-273-0) and made them available at the time of registration.  Authors of selected papers have also been invited to submit extended versions of their work to Perspectives in Public Health and a special issue highlighting the conference will be published November 2011.

We are extremely grateful to the Worshipful Company of Cooks who have again been the main sponsor of this conference and look forward to 2013 when ICCAS will be held in Portugal and 2015 when it will be held in Auckland, New Zealand.

Conference Secretariat ICCAS 2011:
Dr Heather Hartwell, Assoc Prof
Foodservice and Applied Nutrition Research Group
Bournemouth University
 
Tel: +44 1202 961712
Email: ICCAS2011@bournemouth.ac.uk
Web: www.ICCAS2011.com