Tagged / BU research

Publish empirical or experimental data early whilst letting theory mature?

My colleagues and I have written several papers to help budding researchers about the process of writing and publishing academic papers (Hundley, & van Teijlingen 2002; van Teijlingen 2004; Pitchforth et al. 2005; van Teijlingen et al. 2012; Simkhada et al. 2013). For all researchers – students and staff alike publishing research findings is important as new insights will add to the existing knowledge base, advance the academic discipline and, in the case of applied research, perhaps improve something in the lives of others such as, well-being, the economy or the environment. Apart from this general/altruistic drive to add to knowledge, the advice academics give our postgraduate students is: to get your study published as soon as possible. The two main reasons for publishing early are: (a) getting into print to potentially help your careers; and (b) staking once claim as an authority in the field and/or publishing your findings before someone else does.
As always there are exceptions to the rule. As academics we agree that trying to get into print early is a good personal strategy for an early researcher or a postgraduate student especially for those working with empirical or experimental data. However, occasionally it is better to wait and give the underlying idea in the paper time to develop and mature. The kind of paper that often improves with time is one based on theory. Let me share a personal example: a theoretical paper from my PhD (awarded by the University of Aberdeen in 1994). This paper started life as a theory chapter in my PhD thesis (van Teijlingen 1994). This chapter on models of maternity care was not the strongest part of my thesis and it took me another decade of fine-tuning to get it into a state worth publishing. The paper ‘A Critical Analysis of the Medical Model as used in the Study of Pregnancy and Childbirth’ was finally published in Sociological Research Online, the original online-only Sociology journal in the world (van Teijlingen 2005). The wait was worthwhile as the paper is today (May 2013), eight year after publication, the seventh ‘most viewed articles during the past eight weeks’ in the journal (see: http://www.socresonline.org.uk/stats/top20.html).
In conclusion, it is generally sound advice to new researchers and postgraduate students to publish early. Occasionally though, waiting and giving your paper time to improve through discussion with colleagues, presenting the ideas at conferences and on blogs may lead to a better final product.
Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen
Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health
School of Health & Social Care

References
Hundley, V., van Teijlingen E. (2002) How to decide where to send an article for publication? Nursing Standard 16(36): 21.
van Teijlingen (1994) A social or medical comparison of childbirth? : comparing the arguments in Grampian (Scotland) and the Netherlands (PhD thesis), Aberdeen: University of Aberdeen. Available online in the British Library (search for: uk.bl.ethos.387237 ).
Teijlingen van, E. (2004) Why I can’t get any academic writing done, Medical Sociology News 30 (3): 62-6.
van Teijlingen, E. (2005) A Critical Analysis of the Medical Model as used in the Study of Pregnancy and Childbirth, Sociological Research Online 10(2) Freely available online at: www.socresonline.org.uk/10/2/teijlingen.html.
Pitchforth, E., Porter, M., Teijlingen van, E.R., Forrest Keenan, K. (2005) Writing up and presenting qualitative research in family planning and reproductive health care, Journal of Family Planning & Reproductive Health Care 31 (2): 132-135.
Teijlingen van, E., Simkhada. P.P., Simkhada, B., Ireland, J. (2012) The long and winding road to publication, Nepal Journal Epidemiology 2(4): 213-215. http://nepjol.info/index.php/NJE/article/view/7093
Simkhada, P., van Teijlingen, E., Hundley, V. (2013) Writing an academic paper for publication, Health Renaissance 11 (1): 1-5. www.healthrenaissance.org.np/uploads/Pp_1_5_Guest_Editorial.pdf

Fusion Investment Fund – 2013/14 round one now open to applications!

 


 

The Pro Vice-Chancellor is delighted to invite you to apply for this round of the Fusion Investment Fund. It provides fantastic opportunities for you to grow as a researcher, an educator and practitioner and there are a range of options for you to choose from, depending on your needs. Three funding strands are available for staff at BU:

Co-Creation and Co-production strand (CCCP)

Study Leave strand (SL) – There are three elements of this: Academic Study Leave, Internal Secondments and Industrial Staff Placements.

Staff Mobility and Networking strand (SMN) – There are also three elements to this strand: Standard, Erasmus, Santander

Successful bids will need to have benefits to the student experience at the core and be able to demonstrate how this will occur, so hitting the Education point in the BU Fusion triangle is important. For all the updated strand and policy documents, Fund FAQs and information about applying, please visit the FIF intranet pages.

The Fusion Investement Fund is managed by Samantha Leahy-Harland and is administered by Natalie Baines. Please direct all intial enquiries to Natalie Baines.

 

 

 

Bournemouth University Clinical Research Unit (BUCRU) Annual Report

At the Bournemouth University Clinical Research Unit (BUCRU) we think it is important to review our activities on a regular basis, to document our achievements and to outline our plans for the future. We have decided that the best way to do this is to prepare an Annual Report. It was completed some months ago and now we would like to share it more widely with our colleagues in the University. It can be found on our microsite at http://microsites.bournemouth.ac.uk/bucru/news/ we hope it is of interest.

The support and collaborations we offer are available to staff within the University, and to staff in the NHS. In the next year we will be particularly trying to develop new collaborations between University and health service staff that will lead to high quality grant applications.

If you would like further information please contact Louise Ward (wardl@bournemouth.ac.uk Tel: 01202 961939)

http://microsites.bournemouth.ac.uk/bucru/ 

Presentation from Paula Kersten ‘Supporting strategies for self-management of rehabilitation in the home: a feasibility study’

You are cordially invited to a lunchtime presentation being delivered by Paula Kersten the Associate Professor of Rehabilitation at Auckland University of Technology and Visiting Professor with HSC. This is an hour long presentation entitled ‘Supporting strategies for self-management of rehabilitation in the home: a feasibility study’.  This talk would be of interest to health professionals working in health and rehabilitation.  We very much hope you will be able to attend this informative presentation.

For Paula Kersten’s Biography, please follow link below:

http://www.aut.ac.nz/profiles/paula-kersten

Thursday 16th May 2013

‘Supporting strategies for self-management of rehabilitation in the home: a feasibility study’

Presentation by Paula Kersten, Associate Professor Rehabilitation, Auckland University of Technology

12.00-1.00pm

BG11, Bournemouth House, Lansdowne Campus, BH1 3LH

 

Hosted by Clinical Research Unit

European Science Foundation and Global Changes in the Marine Environment

I was very proud to have been invited by the Institute of Marine Sciences – National Research Council (ISMAR-CNR) in Venice who developed on the European Science Foundation Platform, the Exploratory Workshop:  Marine woodborers: New Frontiers for European Waters. And I have to say that that was one of the most exciting research opportunities I have taken part of in the recent past.

The European Science Foundation (ESF) was established in 1974 to provide a common platform for its Member Organisations to advance European research collaboration and explore new directions for research. Currently it is an independent organisation, owned by 67 Member Organisations, which are research funding organisations, research performing organisations and academies from 29 countries.

The focus of the Exploratory Workshops scheme is on workshops aiming to explore an emerging and/or innovative field of research or research infrastructure, also of interdisciplinary character. Workshops are expected to open up new directions in research or new domains. It is expected that a workshop shall conclude with plans for follow-up research activities and/or collaborative actions or other specific outputs at international level.

The organisers, namely Davide Tagliapietra, Erica Keppel and Marco Sigovini – all from the ISMAR-CNR- did an amazing job in organising this much needed research group and by planning an excellent working programme.

The topic, centred on Marine woodborers is of utmost important as these organisms are a threat to maritime structure and archaeological heritage. Recently, an increase in attack and a northward spread has been reported. Despite the ecological, economical and cultural importance, research on this subject is carried out by few scientists scattered across Europe. An interdisciplinary approach is needed to reach a synthesis of knowledge and a deeper understanding of the causal factors. The main outcome of the workshop is the establishment of a research network aiming to coordinate scientists with an European perspective and a global view. Through the establishment of such a network, new theoretical and technical developments could be achieved.

The agenda of the workshop was to focus on:

1) bringing together experts in complementary fields that have hitherto not collaborated as a group;

2) identifying additional research competences that are not covered within the group of participants;

3) identifying, exchanging and sharing research interests for future joint leading research projects and developing an application strategies;

4) the establishment of an international network on marine woodborers.

Despite the subject ([wood-]‘boring’ organisms), there wasn’t a single dull moment. It was very exciting to spent a considerable amount of time with international peers coming from as far as Colombia and discussing the problems surrounding these particular organisms.

All sessions were extremely interesting and productive and I totally enjoyed chairing one of them in the Knowledge Café, with my hat of maritime archaeologist whose research interest based also based on marine organisms and global changes, but I am also one of few who combines degradation and protection of the cultural heritage and marine science. The Knowledge Café focussed on Systematics and biogeography, Marine woodborer-microorganism interactions, Protection of shipwrecks and maritime structures. Each group discussed weaknesses: Problems, constrains and bottlenecks, Strengths: Opportunities, synergies, and Perspectives: Solutions, actions and recommendations.

19 international peers attended, which was by invitation only, this amazing opportunity, some of which were old friends and some of which have become reference points for my current and future research on wood borers.

All with the amazing architectural beauties of a tiny Venetian island just in front of one of the world most famous squares: San Marco square!

Paola Palma 

BPS Wessex Student Conference

On Saturday, Bournemouth University hosted the Wessex Branch of the British Psychological Society (BPS) Annual Student Conference. This event provided an opportunity for students to showcase novel research and, in addition to BU, attracted Psychology students from a range of institutions (e.g. Universities of Surrey, Sussex, Winchester, and Southampton). The breadth of institution was matched by the breadth of student; with undergraduate research assistants through to doctoral students presenting their work to an audience of approximately 100 delegates.

In total, there were 28 oral presentations and 19 research posters. In addition, we were fortunate to have two thought-provoking keynote speakers. First, Dr. Richard Stephens (Keele University) spoke about the role of swearing on pain tolerance (in short, it helps, particularly if you are normally an infrequent user of coarse vocabulary) and, second, Prof. Clare Wood (Coventry University) delivered a presentation on the effects of text messaging on literacy (in sum, ‘textisms’ are not rotting the brains of our nation’s youth).

The conference sought to emphasise that, rather than a perfunctory assessment exercise, student research is an important part of knowledge creation within our universities. Whilst this was highlighted by the collaborative (student-academic) nature of the projects, it was also evident how the presenters had developed into independent researchers. This apprenticeship model is one employed by the Bournemouth Psychology Research Centre and it was pleasing to see a number of our Year 2 Psychology students presenting data that had arisen from their research assistant placements. There was a large contingent of first and second year BU Psychology students in the audience and helping with conference organisation as volunteers. We hope that they have been inspired to participate in more staff projects and will return next year to present their research.

FIF Staff Mobility and Networking award helping me fly

Early in January I received the good news that my application to the Fusion Investment Fund SMN strand was successful. What a great way to start the New Year!

The main aim of my FIF SMN project is to consolidate newly developed partnerships with European and non-European researchers and stakeholders. Planned activities include visits to colleagues who were involved in the development of the research proposal “Living with Extreme Events at the Coast” (LEEC), submitted to the EU FP7 call on Environment (Challenge 6.4 Protecting citizens from environmental hazards). LEEC successfully passed stage 1 and we are now waiting for the outcome of stage 2, so keep your fingers crossed.

As my FIF SMN proposal builds from LEEC, I decided to call it “Living with Extreme Events at the Coast Grant Development” (LEEC GraDe). Not very creative, but it reflects well the main objective, which is to explore opportunities for collaborative research in topics related to LEEC. LEEC aims to better understand how extreme storms and climate change in coastal areas will affect flood risk and impact on society, infrastructure, economic activities and the natural environment throughout the 21th century.

Besides, the development of collaborative research proposals, I will also be exploring opportunities for enhancing students’ experience, e.g. through work placements. By the time I submitted the FIF SMN proposal, I had just taken the role of ApSci’s Academic Lead for Placements. In this role, one of my objectives is to increase the offer of research-based placements to our students. So I thought my networking visits would be a great opportunity to discuss with colleagues from organisations in Europe and abroad whether they are interested in offering to our students a research-based working experience. Many researchers systematically plan their fieldwork campaigns or dedicate larger proportion of their time to research in the summer, so a work placement can be mutually beneficial.

I so much believe in the benefits of this arrangement that I am offering two placements this summer to undergrad ApSci students. If you are interested in doing the same, please contact me.

LEEC partners are from 13 organisations spread across eight countries (Estonia, Spain, France, Belgium, Denmark, UK, Mexico and Vietnam). The FIF SMN award will allow me to visit some of these organisations and engage in other networking opportunities. I will be very busy networking throughout 2013! Hopefully the effort will result in the submission of more collaborative research proposals and a number of arrangements made to enrich students’ experiences through placements or exchanges.

The first of my planned activities was to attend the 12th International Coastal Symposium (ICS) in Plymouth (http://ics2013.org/) earlier this month. This is the largest international conference focused on coastal research with over 500 participants, so a great venue to disseminate research results, to keep updated with research progress worldwide and to network! I was invited to be the convener of the Coastal Evolution and Geomorphology session, so worked very hard evaluating abstracts and full papers before the conference! I also presented a paper on the Coastal Management session, entitled “Is managed realignment a sustainable long-term coastal management approach?” You can find a copy of the paper on BRIAN.

ICS offered the opportunity to meet many ‘old’ friends and make new contacts worldwide, including from countries I had none before, such as Trinidad & Tobago and South Africa. I have already exchanged email with a few of the new (and old) contacts and there are very exciting prospects for future collaboration. I have discussed the preparation of a joint paper with a colleague from the University of Rostock (Germany), explored ways to collaborate with practitioners from a government agency in Trinidad & Tobago and I am already working on a proposal with colleagues from South Africa. The most immediate result from networking during ICS was the invitation to visit five different organisations in Mexico, which is planned to happen in June.

Networking is also about maximising the opportunities and I will be doing exactly that next month in Brazil. I was invited to give a keynote talk in the National Symposium of Coastal Vulnerability. As the hosts are taking me to Brazil, I will extend my stay and visit two universities using SMN funds. The plan is to start building a joint research proposal to submit to the Science without borders programme (funding source from Brazil) with the Universidade Federal de Pernambuco and discuss exchange of postgraduate students and other opportunities with the Universidade do Vale do Itai.

Please watch this space for upcoming news!

Luciana Slomp Esteves (Lecturer in Physical Geography, ApSci)

FIF SMN strand now closed

The Fusion Investment Fund Staff Mobility & Networking (SMN) Strand which was open for applications assessed on a rolling basis has now closed. We have funded a good number of applications received and news of these have and will continue to be publicised here on the blog. The FIF scheme reopens in late April/early May with an application deadline of 1 July. Please check the blog for details soon.

The Fusion in Action conference is taking place on Thursday 18 April in Kimmeridge House from 12pm. Book now to attend the conference (via the Staff Development Webpage) and come along to see a showcase of the best of Fusion at BU. It’s a great opportunity to learn more about how you can get involved.

BU research to feature in BJOG’s international Twitter Journal Club

A recent paper by Professor Vanora Hundley is receiving significant interest and is to feature in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology’s Twitter Journal Club. For the last two years the BJOG has provided questions and slide sets to help readers evaluate selected papers in their local Journal Club. However, the introduction of the new Twitter Journal Club allows readers across the world to engage in online critical review and discussion. In addition to the paper, participants are provided with a scenario, background to the clinical issue, helpful details about the paper and discussion points. Journal club members participate in the discussion via Twitter using a specified hashtag (#BlueJC).  The discussion session starts on 20 March 2013 at 17:00 GMT and is open to anyone to join. For further details see: http://www.bjog.org/details/news/4459851/Blue_JC.html

Squeezing the pips from a conference with social media

Please forgive the self-publicity, but I would like to share my recent use of social media to promote BU, research, a conference and papers.

Last week, I attended the annual International Public Relations Research Conference (IPRRC) in the US, where I presented three papers, one with a US co-author. It’s the largest conference in the field, drawing 101 papers over three days and attendance in the order of 150-175 academics, graduates and some practitioners.

To broadcast involvement in the conference, I used my personal blog to present a daily summary of interesting papers:  http://fiftyonezeroone.blogspot.co.uk/. The blog posts have had over 210 visits so far and were also circulated on LinkedIn, Twitter and Google+. There have been many re-tweets (RTs), plus appreciative emails and direct messages via Twitter.

A short summary of “top 10 research tips” was written for the prmoment.com website which has around 30,000 users, worldwide. It was posted on the site’s blog and is included in this week’s publication: http://blog.prmoment.com/ten-pr-research-tips-from-bournemouth-universitys-professor-tom-watson/

The outcomes of this type of activity will be long-term and hard to measure, but as I was the only UK delegate at IPRRC this year, it has given BU, our research and industry knowledge an international platform of expertise and insight to present ourselves. The capital cost was almost nil, as I used my own netbook, Wi-Fi was free and the time component was less than an hour a day. Try this approach at your next conference or internal event.

Tom Watson presenting at IPRRC 2013

Networking with microbes: BOSS – Biogeography of Organisms of Small Size

Genoveva Esteban, Associate Professor at the School of Applied Sciences, has been awarded a Santander Staff Mobility and Networking Scholarship (strand of the Fusion Investment Fund) to develop a network with Prof Angel Baltanás at Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Spain). The network is called BOSS (Biogeography of Organisms of Small Size) – a research-educational network on freshwater aquatic ecology. The aim of BOSS is to investigate the geographical distribution of small-sized organisms and rare freshwater invertebrates involving students (supervised by the PI and CoI) at each university to exchange data collected from rare aquatic habitats in central Spain and in Dorset via the internet. The network will aim at developing a bilingual on-line learning and communications tool to facilitate exchange of students, masters, ecological information, and research between both institutions.  The project will also help promote BU’s PG research and MSc opportunities.

EUNF award enables research with the University of Ljubljana

An EU Networking Fund (EUNF) award made to Vanora Hundley will enable research collaboration between Bournemouth University and the University of Ljubljana. Established in 1918 the University of Ljubljana is the oldest and largest university in Slovenia.

University of LlubljanaThe EUNF award will enable Vanora to travel to Ljubljana to discuss research on the topic of intervention in childbirth; an issue that is challenging many high income countries. The University of Ljubljana has run a midwifery programme since 1996 and currently admits 30 students a year. Research is a core component of midwifery education, as it is in other European institutions including Bournemouth University. However, postgraduate research in midwifery is less common there and it is hoped that this collaboration can strengthen midwifery research in Slovenia.