Category / research staff

FHSS Women in Science

 

Tomorrow Friday 11th February is the UN’s International Day of Women and Girls in Science.  To celebrate this event we would like to highlight the contributions of three BU female academics in the sciences in the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences: Jane Murphy, Rebecca Neal and Amanda Wilding.

Jane Murphy

Prof Jane Murphy – Professor in Nutrition, Co-lead for the Aging and Dementia Research Centre

Jane is a role model as a female research leader committed to solving key nutrition problems in older adults. She has won funding from prestigious organisations like the Burdett Trust for Nursing and NIHR. Jane’s research has direct impact in practice through her clinical lead role in the Wessex Academic Health Science Network. She influences high standards in education and practice in her role as an elected council member for the Association for Nutrition.

Dr. Rebecca Neal– Senior Lecturer in Exercise Physiology.

Rebecca is an Early Career Research excelling in traditionally male-dominated field of Sport and Exercise Science. Her work in the field of Extreme Environmental Physiology is published in prestigious physiology journals and she has been the recipient of external and internal grants to advance her work. Rebecca contributes greatly to transferring her research finding to the end user, through public engagement events, magazine articles and podcasts aimed at raising the awareness of the issues and needs of individuals exercising in extreme environments.

Dr. Amanda Wilding– Senior Lecturer in Sport Psychology

In addition to teaching Sport and Exercise Psychology, Amanda works as a Sports Psychologist in professional male football and Army rugby. Her involvement working in male dominated sports lead to her being invited to lead a workshop on Women in Sport  to women at the Princess Nourah Bint Abdulrahman University in Saudi Arabia.

Join the Centre for Seldom Heard Voices February Seminar

Dr Rosie Read will be talking about the ‘Carers experience of the Covid-19 pandemic’.
February 23rd 
12:00-13:00 via TEAMS
If you would like to join the seminar please email jonesc@bournemouth.ac.uk
About the Topic:

Adult social care in the UK denotes a diverse range of provisions for people over 18 with chronic illness, mental illness, physical disabilities or frailties in older age. Social care is largely coordinated by local government and since the 1990s there has been a marked growth in community-based social care services that are delivered to people in their homes. Unlike the National Health Service (NHS), social care provision is highly residual, and has always relied heavily on the cooperation of carers (family members and friends of people using social care services) in order to run smoothly.

This presentation will examine the experiences of carers during the Covid-19 pandemic 2020-21. It will draw on qualitative data from a study of waged and unwaged caring labour provided to people at home during lockdowns and social distancing in BCP and Dorset, which incorporated 14 in depth interviews with carers. It will be shown that the closure of health and welfare services left carers with significant additional caring work and obligations, yet also unable to access support networks. Carers’ experiences of confinement, abandonment and isolation will be examined alongside the challenges they confronted in navigating health and welfare systems and finding out about entitlement to help. It will be argued that these experiences are a particularly acute iteration of a more general pattern whereby the work performed by carers is taken for granted and made invisible. The presentation will conclude by reflecting on why it is that carers are so poorly supported in the contemporary UK social care system, despite being crucial to it.

 

We look forward to seeing you at the seminar

Centre for Seldom Heard Voices

 

Reminder about the BU Bridging Fund

In summer 2015, we launched the BU Bridging Fund Scheme which aims to provide additional stability to fixed-term researchers who are often employed on short term contacts linked to external funding. This situation may impact on continuity of employment due to breaks in employment, job security and can result in a costly loss of researcher talent for the institution.

The Scheme aims to mitigate these circumstances through early career planning, forward research project planning, redeployment where possible, or where feasible, by providing ‘bridging funding’ for the continuation of employment for a short-term (usually up to three months, but up to six months can be considered in exceptional situations) between research grants. BU’s Bridging Fund Scheme is intended to permit the temporary employment, in certain circumstances, of researchers between fixed-term contracts at BU, for whom no other source of funding is available, in order to:

(a) encourage the retention of experienced and skilled staff, and sustain research teams and expertise;

(b) avoid the break in employment and career which might otherwise be faced by such staff;

(c) maximise the opportunity for such staff to produce high-quality outputs and/or research impact at the end of funded contracts/grants.

 

To find out more about the scheme, including how to apply for bridging funding, see the scheme guidelines.

 

The Bridging Fund Scheme is an action from our Athena Swan action plan (which aims to create a more gender inclusive culture at BU) and our HR Excellence in Research Award (which aims to increase BU’s alignment with the national Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers).

Recruiting : Faculty Reps for the Research Staff Association

The BU Research Staff Association (RSA) is a forum to promote research culture at BU. Research staff from across BU are encouraged to attend to network with others researchers, disseminate their work, discuss career opportunities, hear updates on how BU is implementing the Research Concordat, and give feedback or raise concerns that will help to develop and support the research community at BU.

The Association is run by two leaders, supported by at least two reps from each faculty. Eligible research staff are those on fixed-term or open-ended employment contracts (not PTHP/casual contracts). If you are interested in this role, please supply a few words to demonstrate your suitability, interest, availability in relation to the position to Researchdev@bournemouth.ac.uk by the 30/11/21.

Please contact your faculty RSA rep to chat about it if you have any queries.

Care at home in the time of covid.

Covid-19 lockdowns and social distancing have socially and spatially reorganised the reproductive labour entailed in supporting, maintaining and sustaining people in everyday life. The closure of schools, day centres, shops and non-essential services, alongside prohibitions on household mixing, have meant that caring work has been much more spatially concentrated and contained within households than in normal times. For reasons of health, age or physical frailty, a large number of adults have come to depend more than usual on others to support and care for them at home.

Over the past year, I’ve been carrying out a British Academy-funded study exploring the experiences of people who provide home-based care and support. I’ve examined three areas, or what I call infrastructures of provision; family carers, home (domiciliary) care services and voluntary and community sector initiatives which support people at home. Focusing on Bournemouth Christchurch and Poole (BCP) and Dorset local authority areas, I’ve been examining the challenges these infrastructures faced during the pandemic. I’ve carried out semi-structured interviews with carers, volunteers and volunteer coordinators, as well as home (domiciliary) care workers and their managers, to learn about their experiences.

Social care, the voluntary and community sector and the family are usually studied separately. Why does this study bring them together?

Firstly, despite differences between them, there are some basic similarities between what volunteers, care workers and carers do in looking after people in their own homes during the pandemic. All have been directly engaged in the vitally important work of sustaining people through the crisis, keeping them safe at home by ensuring some of their essential needs (for food, medicines) were met. Many were also providing company and comfort for people isolated at home. They did this in different ways depending on their role – in person, with PPE, over the phone, or at a safe two meters distance from the front door.

Another feature shared across the three infrastructures is the low levels of public investment each receives. The social care system has always been highly residual in the UK (Lewis 2001), but is becoming even more so. In recent years, the numbers of people entitled to public support with social care costs has been in overall decline, particularly amongst adults of retirement age (Bottery 2020). Home care workers in social care are also amongst the lowest paid workers in the UK, at a median hourly rate of £8.50 (Skills for care 2021).
Similarly, state financial support for carers is one of the lowest paid amongst all state benefits, at £67.25 per week, and many carers are in financial hardship (Carers UK 2021). The voluntary and community sector has been significantly impacted by government austerity measures over the last decade, albeit unevenly (Kay 2020). Many voluntary organisations rely on support from local authorities, which have absorbed massive cuts to public finances.

Thus, despite its high social value and the fact that it has been indispensible to the welfare and wellbeing of large numbers of people during the pandemic, the work carried out by carers, care workers and volunteers receives shockingly meagre levels of public funding. That this contradiction is both unsustainable and deeply unjust has long been recognised by policy makers, campaigning groups, academics, trade unions and some politicians (see further Bear et al 2020, Dowling 2021, Wood and Skeggs 2020).

Taking a broader historical perspective, some feminist scholars argue that this contradiction is a systemic feature of capitalism. Capitalist accumulation depends on activities that recreate and sustain people, thereby enabling workers, consumers, markets, production and productivity to exist at all. But it also relies on offloading the costs of these activities (eg., onto families) such that they do not overly impede the creation and expansion of wealth, but instead appear to be separate and external to it (Ferguson 2020). Nonetheless, political demands that a greater share of this wealth be redistributed to enable people to better sustain themselves and each other can be and have been made, in different historical contexts, and with mixed successes. The outcomes of this core tension are not given, but are constantly being worked out in social and political life.

In the present moment in the UK, the pandemic has made starker than ever the contradiction between the vital importance of home care on the one hand, and its underinvestment and public neglect on the other. As large parts of the productive economy were shut down, a new appreciation of essential workers crystallized, and our collective dependence on their contribution was publicly ritualised in the weekly ‘clap for our carers’ event. Public support for greater care justice appears to be growing (Wood and Skeggs, 2020). This makes now a key moment to capture and compare the experiences of people who sustained others during the pandemic, and consider how these could inform the creation of a new, fairer care settlement in the UK.

References

Bear, L., James, D., Simpson, N., Alexander, E., Bhogal, J., Bowers, R., Cannell, F., Lohiya, A., Koch, I., Laws, M., Lenhard, J., Long, N., Pearson, A., Samanani, F., Vicol, D., Vieira, J., Watt, C., Wuerth, M., Whittle, C., Bărbulescu, T., 2020. The right to care. The social foundations of recovery from Covid-19 [online]. Covid and care research group: London school of economics. Available from: https://www.lse.ac.uk/anthropology/assets/documents/research/Covid-and-Care/ARighttoCare-CovidandCare-Final-2310.pdf (Accessed 13.7.2021)

Bottery, S., 2020. Social care services. Funding cuts are biting hard. The Kings Fund [online]. 9th January. Available from: https://www.kingsfund.org.uk/blog/2020/01/social-care-funding-cuts-are-biting-hard (Accessed 13.7.2021).

Carers UK, 2021. Fairer for carers – background information [online]. Carers UK. Available from: https://www.carersuk.org/news-and-campaigns/campaigns/fairer-for-carers-background (Accessed 13.7.2021).

Dowling, E., 2021. The care crisis. What caused it and how do we end it? London: Verso.

Ferguson, S., 2020. Women and work. Feminism, labour and social reproduction. London: Pluto Press

Kay, L., 2020. Ten years of cuts have ‘damaged health and widened regional inequality’ [online]. Third sector, 20th February 2020. Available from: https://www.thirdsector.co.uk/ten-years-cuts-have-damaged-health-widened-regional-inequality/policy-and-politics/article/1674970 (Accessed 13.7.2021).

Lewis, J., 2001. Older people and the health-social care boundary in the UK: Half a century of hidden policy conflict. Social policy & administration. 35 (4), 343-359.

Skills for Care, 2021. Pay in the adult social care sector [online]. Available from: https://www.skillsforcare.org.uk/adult-social-care-workforce-data/Workforce-intelligence/documents/Pay-in-ASC-sector-2020.pdf (Accessed 13.7.2021)

Wood, H and Skeggs, B., 2021. Clap for carers? From care gratitude to care justice. European journal of cultural studies, 23 (4), 641-647.

Research staff ‘virtual writing workshop’ 29 June 13.30-16.30pm

This is a reminder about our ‘Virtual Writing Workshop’ on 29 June 13.30 – 16.30pm. We will have 2 blocks of writing (just over an hour each and then a break in the middle to get a coffee and chat to other researchers if you wish). If you can’t make 13.30 you can join a bit later – no worries.

This is for anyone (PhD student, academic, full time researcher) who wants to/needs to write and would like to do that in the company of colleagues from across the university.

Please come prepared with something you are working on. We recommend turning off email notifications and anything else that could distract to help us get the most out of the time – but your decision – it’s your time!

Please click this Zoom link to join us.

Kind regards, BU Research Staff Association

Interactive Digital Narratives for Health Seminar via Zoom

You are invited to join our lunchtime seminar this Wednesday at 12:30, hosted by the Ageing and Dementia Research Centre, via Zoom.

Title: Interactive Digital Narratives for Health: Approaches to using storygames as intervention and education  

Speaker: Dr Lyle Skains 

Time and date: 16th June @ 12.30pm – 13:30

Abstract: Interactive digital narratives (IDNs) (a.k.a. digital fiction, storygames, hypertexts, interactive fiction) are an emerging form of engaging storytelling adaptable to many devices, platforms, purposes, and audiences. This talk highlights pilot studies in creating and using IDNs as health and science education-through-entertainment on the Playable Comms project (playablecomms.org). As an interdisciplinary network of projects, Playable Comms combines science and arts research and practice to develop a model for creation of health- & sci-comm IDNs, and evaluates their efficacy, attempting to measure message uptake from outright rejection to holistic adoption engendering associated behavioural change. IDNs can be used in schools, GP waiting rooms, on tablets and smartphones; interactivity significantly increases retention, particularly when incorporated into media that audiences voluntarily and eagerly devote attention to.  

Join Zoom Meeting

https://bournemouth-ac-uk.zoom.us/j/86494645871?pwd=QnAxQVVyWjYvSUc5Q3pzSVF3QVRudz09

Meeting ID: 864 9464 5871

Passcode: 7d!kX5LM

Meeting ID: 864 9464 5871

Passcode: 69937258

Find your local number: https://bournemouth-ac-uk.zoom.us/u/kDPhCvAbL

We look forward to seeing you Wednesday.

Best wishes

The Ageing and Dementia Research Centre

Research Staff Coffee Break – The Place To Be!

On Thursday 27 May, we held our first Research Staff Coffee Break. We welcomed researchers* from across BU (virtually!) for an informal catch-up session over cups of tea and coffee.

(*This is a very loose term – everyone is welcome, whether research is the majority of your role or a tiny part!)

We began by introducing the BU Research Staff Association (RSA), who organised the event. The RSA is an association run by BU researchers from all faculties who want to make BU a great place to work and do research. We aim to ensure that researchers are supported to realise their full potential and to develop and produce research of the highest quality. We are a friendly group who want to make sure we support and represent BU researchers in the best way we can.

At the start of the session we raised 2 questions for discussion:

  1. Is there anything you have struggled with as a researcher during Covid?
  2. Is there anything the RSA could do that is useful for you as a researcher?

These were just to get us started – in the course of the Coffee Break we covered subjects ranging from the pros & cons of working from home during Covid, to tips on how to run a virtual conference.

We also talked about possible future sessions which the RSA might run, including sessions on Writing Grant Bids and on Applying for Pay Progression.

It was lovely to see everyone’s faces, get to know people a bit better, and take some time away from meetings / marking to talk about some of the issues we are struggling with – as well as share things which are going well.

Our next Research Staff Coffee Break will be on Thursday 10 June at 3-4pm, via Zoom.

During the Coffee Break, we’ll chat about Recovering From Covid Disruption As A Researcher. We’d love to see you there!

As the RSA, we want to run events which are of most interest to researchers at BU. If you have 5 minutes to spare, it would be great if you could fill out our survey so that we can make sure the RSA is putting on events which you would find useful – please find the link here (it should only take 5 minutes to complete):

Finally, if you did want to contact any of your RSA reps to discuss any issues confidentially, our contact details are below:

University Research Staff Reps:  

Michelle Heward

Ashok Patnaik

Faculty of Health & Social Science:

Preeti Mahato

Rachel Arnold

BU Business School:

Rafaelle Nicholson

Ashok Patnaik

Faculty of Media & Communications:

Oliver Gingrich

Ethzaz Chaudhry

Faculty of Science & Technology:

Kimberley Davies

BUBS Consumer Insights Research Theme

BUBS Consumer Insights Research Theme based in the Department of Marketing Strategy and Innovation draws together a team of 13 researchers addressing how consumers think, feel, and behave.

We adopt a broad interpretation of the consumer, including Business to Business and Business to Consumers, and include foci from the consumption of products or services to understanding the way consumers think, their attitudes and behaviours. Consumer Insight bridges the gap between research and practice by providing relevant and actionable insight that resonates with business and delivers societal impact. Consumers are at the heart of all organisations and this gives the Theme a strong core purpose with wide and diverse application.

This theme bridges the gap between academic research and practitioner needs providing awareness to enable businesses to efficiently target their resources. In addition, we also provide a better understanding of how consumers think and behave and thereby enable organisations to respond more effectively to their needs. There is significant grant crafting and project management expertise and we find that a consumer perspective is often a useful addition to funding applications rooted in a range of disciplines.

The range and diversity of Consumer Insights is demonstrated by our involvement with projects that span, for example: Food waste reduction in the EU; The legalised Canadian cannabis retail market; Online branding of charities; Food consumption patterns; Learning gain in marketing education; Religion and retail banking; Ethical consumption; Consumer identity; Fashion/luxury branding.

The theme members include: Ediz Akcay; Samreen Ashraf; Sean Beer; Elvira Bolat; Julia Hibbert; Hiroko Oe; Kaouther Kooli; Danni Liang; Juliet Memery; Maria Musarskaya; Helen O’Sullivan;

The theme is convened by: Chris Chapleo (cchapleo@bournemouth.ac.uk) and Jeff Bray (jbray@bournemouth.ac.uk).

Please do get in touch if you are interested to hear more about the work of the theme or would like to discuss any potential collaborations.

Research staff coffee breaks

A warm ‘hello!’ from your Research Staff Association (RSA) reps. We hope that this email finds you well and that you have been managing to cope with all the changes over the last year.

We are contacting all the research staff across the university to invite you all to our virtual (for the moment) ‘Research Staff Coffee Breaks’, starting on 27th May at 10-11am and continuing throughout the summer. Due to the many challenges we have encountered over the last year and a general consensus among the members of the RSA that we would like to do more to support the research staff we represent, we are working to develop the RSA to help make BU a great place for researchers to work and progress in their careers. We want to offer peer support, accurate representation and opportunities to get to know other research staff across the university. To do this though, we need to connect with the members of the BU community who we represent (you!) and find out first-hand what the important issues, concerns and aspirations are.

As an initial means of introducing ourselves and meeting you we have set up a number of coffee breaks as an informal space to connect and take a break from work. Whilst we are still working from home these will be held on zoom. The details for the coffee breaks are included below including the zoom links and log in details. If you cannot make any of these meetings but would like to introduce yourself, raise an issue or simply ask a question please don’t hesitate to get in touch via email.

Zoom links:

Please join us for one or both of these – there’s no need to RSVP!

Unfortunately, we don’t have resources to send out coffee and cake but hopefully you can find something nice and can join us at some or all our breaks. We are looking into more formal provision of space and food and drink for when we are able to meet on campus but until then, we’re looking forward to meeting you virtually soon.

Best wishes

The Research Staff Association Team

Participants needed for a study on educators’ wellbeing.

Researchers and students at the Department of Psychology are conducting research into the factors promoting and otherwise affecting the wellbeing of education professionals specifically during this phase of the covid-19 pandemic (Ethics ID:34613). Via an anonymous, short survey, gaining the views of a wide range of education professionals nationally we aim to provide the Department of Education and the whole community of education with an evidence-based perspective on what is working well in schools to support staff wellbeing.

To contribute please forward the following link to any friends/family/contacts involved with teaching and learning (senior leaders, teachers, support staff and all other educational professionals) in primary or secondary schools in the UK https://bournemouthpsych.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6mvGIrW6hk9z62F

If you have any questions or comments please contact us at researchwellbeing@bournemouth.ac.uk

Your support with this research would be greatly valued.

Early Career Researchers – Showcase Series 20-21

Wednesday April 21st 16:00 – 17:00

The Early Career Researchers Network (ECRN) at BU provides a forum for Early Career Researchers to meet each other, share experiences and learning, and potentially could lead to collaboration on research projects. This year, we are also providing a platform for Early Career Researchers to present their research and/or their experiences. We are launching this with a double bill of presentations at the ECRN meeting on 21st April 16:00 – 17:00.

April’s event features the following :

Improving care and support for people living with dementia with Dr. Michelle Heward, Post Doctoral Research Fellow and member of the Ageing and Dementia Research Centre at BU.

In this talk Michelle will discuss her research journey so far in the field of ageing and dementia. With specific examples of studies that she has been involved in that are designed to improve care and support through hearing the voices, understanding the experiences, and facilitating coproduction of people with dementia, family carers, practitioners, and care staff.

Women’s Sport Governance: Merger-Takeovers in the 1990s and beyond with Dr. Rafaelle Nicholson, Senior Lecturer in Sport and Sustainability.

Raf will be discussing the question why so few women are involved in the governance of sport in the UK, and how can we encourage more women to embrace governance roles, to ensure more diverse decision-making. To try to answer these questions, Raf has been interviewing women who were involved in sports governance in the 1980s and 1990s about their reasons for leaving. She will share some of their stories in this presentation.

These presentations will be followed by Q&A.

If you would like to attend, please contact OD@bournemouth.ac.uk

Reminder about the BU Bridging Fund

In summer 2015, we launched the BU Bridging Fund Scheme which aims to provide additional stability to fixed-term researchers who are often employed on short term contacts linked to external funding. This situation may impact on continuity of employment due to breaks in employment, job security and can result in a costly loss of researcher talent for the institution.

The Scheme aims to mitigate these circumstances through early career planning, forward research project planning, redeployment where possible, or where feasible, by providing ‘bridging funding’ for the continuation of employment for a short-term (usually up to three months, but up to six months can be considered in exceptional situations) between research grants. It is intended to permit the temporary employment, in certain circumstances, of researchers between fixed-term contracts at BU, for whom no other source of funding is available, in order to:

(a) encourage the retention of experienced and skilled staff, and sustain research teams and expertise;

(b) avoid the break in employment and career which might otherwise be faced by such staff;

(c) maximise the opportunity for such staff to produce high-quality outputs and/or research impact at the end of funded contracts/grants.

The Scheme was updated in 2020 to:

  1. Update the process to link the funding model with the conditions at the point of application:
    1. Sufficient external funding has been secured to retain the researcher but there is an unavoidable gap between funding (usually up to three months, but up to six months can be considered). If these conditions are met at the point of application and the application is approved then the central budget will cover 100 per cent of the salary and employers’ on-costs during the bridging period.
    2. The researcher is named on a submitted application for research funding and the decision is pending with an outcome expected before the end of the bridging period. If these conditions are met at the point of application and the application is approved then the central budget will cover 50 per cent of the salary costs during the bridging period. The Faculty will be required to meet the remaining 50 per cent of the salary and employers’ on-costs during the bridging period.
  2. Employment legislation updates.
  3. Add an additional financial approval to the application process.

To find out more about the scheme, including how to apply for bridging funding, see the scheme guidelines.

 

The Bridging Fund Scheme is an action from our Athena Swan action plan (which aims to create a more gender inclusive culture at BU) and our HR Excellence in Research Award (which aims to increase BU’s alignment with the national Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers).