Tagged / Early Career Researcher

BA/Leverhulme Small Research Grants – Open today (12/4/17)

The BA/Leverhulme Small Research Grants funding scheme has opened today (12/4/17). The call closes at 5pm on Wednesday 24th of May. There are updated BA scheme notes for applicants and BA FAQs which are also available on e-GAP. Applicants must read the documentation carefully before starting their application. BA receives a high number of applications and will reject, rather than correct those with errors.

If you are interested in applying to this call then please send your intention to bid form and draft proposal to your Funding Development Officer by 3rd May 2017. We usually have a high demand for this call and so we will need to ensure that we have scheduled you in for costings and approvals, particularly as the British Academy requires Bournemouth University to check your application and to electronically submit it on your behalf. The British Academy recommend final drafts be submitted five working days before the deadline so that institutional checks can be performed. Therefore, the Bournemouth University internal deadline for the submission of final drafts and internal permissions is the 17th of May 2017.

If you require help developing or discussing your proposal please contact the relevant Research Facilitator for your faculty.



Most read article (Early Career Researcher)

The first article published by FOM academic Samreen Ashraf has become the ‘Most Read’ article on Research Gate compared to those published by other authors in her department.

The paper focuses on consumer trust in Islamic banks. The authors differentiate between the definitions of trust and confidence in the paper. Specifically, it addressed the questions: to what extent are trust and confidence active influencers in the decision-making process, are they differentiated or are they one of the same? Also how does the Pakistani collective cultural context further complicate the application of these concepts? These questions were addressed by using qualitative methods.
This study provided further insight into consumer behaviour within financial services and specifically Islamic banking and has contributed to the theoretical understanding of the concepts of trust and confidence.

For those interested in reading the paper the full reference is: Ashraf, S., Robson, J. and Sekhon, Y., 2015. Consumer trust and confidence in the compliance of Islamic banks. Journal of Financial Services Marketing, 20(2), pp.133-144.

Alternatively, the paper can be accessed via Research Gate!


EURAXESS – November Newsletter

As notified in the November EURAXESS Newsletter, there are a number of research workshops open for registration under Researcher Links and the Newton Fund. The workshops give researchers the opportunity to form new international connections and Early Career Researchers may apply for grants in order to participate.
Some of the opportunities are:

Further opportunities are listed on the British Council website.

Why not sign up for the EURAXESS Newsletter so that these and further opportunities are delivered direct to your own inbox?Euraxess

Euraxess UK is a British Council hub, which aids researchers in their career development, supporting mobility and acting as a support mechanism for researchers moving abroad or moving to the UK. Their services include:


Are you an early career, social science researcher? Contribute to this ESRC survey to inform future support decisions


ESRC are looking for feedback from early career social scientists (no prescriptive definition given but excluding current Doctoral students) on the experiences and issues they face. Themes covered by the survey include motivations for doctoral study, current employment and future aspirations, availability of support, career advice and guidance – and what support was taken up, and educational background. Selected respondents will be invited to take part in follow-up interviews. The findings will be used to inform ESRC’s support for early career researchers in future years.

Further information is available on the ESRC website http://www.esrc.ac.uk/news-events-and-publications/news/news-items/enhancing-support-for-early-career-social-science-researchers/ and the survey can be found at https://ioe.onlinesurveys.ac.uk/esrc-survey .

Newton Fund seeks Peer Review Panel Members

newton fundThe Newton Fund is actively inviting expressions of interest from senior and early career researchers to expand their pool of panel members for the Newton Fund initiative and, potentially, other British Council programmes.

Looking at the specialisms below, BU has significant expertise in many of these areas.

They are looking for early career researchers who would like to broaden their experience of peer review as a career development opportunity, and for senior researchers who are willing to share and use their experience to support the review panels. Please note that we can only consider researchers based at UK institutions.

By getting involved in funding panels, you will gain invaluable insights into how a funder functions, how they assess applications, build your network, raise your profile in your field and, potentially, give you the opportunity to influence future funding decisions.

For this particular invitation:

Eligibility  Senior and early-career researchers. Early-career researcher is defined as being aCollaborative Decision Making PhD holder + up to 10 years. For fields where a PhD is not a usual career requirement, sufficient research experience will be accepted.

Researchers with the following specialisms are eligible to apply:

  • Biological and Medical Sciences
  • Environment and Agriculture
  • Arts and Humanities
  • Social Sciences
  • Engineering and Physical Sciences

In particular, the Newton Fund would like to hear from researchers who have the following subject specialisms:

  • Human rights
  • Forensic anthropology
  • Marine biology/Oceanography
  • Aquaculture
  • Public health/Nutrition
  • Food science
  • Microbiology
  • Earth Sciences

Find out more and apply!

Time Management for Researchers – 15th April 2015

‘I just don’t have time’ This is a phrase I hear most often at work – we all have increasing pressures and often struggle to be as effective as possible in a shorter period of time to ensure we have a healthy work-life balance.

Everybody has just 24 hours in every day. Why do some people seem to achieve much more than others with their allotted time?

During this half day workshop we will identify the major drains on your time or energies and explore different tools to structure your use of time and resources.

Particularly in a research environment it is likely that there will never be enough time to do everything. This workshop will give you the tools to help you to choose the most important things when all things seem important.

We will consider different ways to assess priorities, to deal with timewasters and with deadlines. The course will also allow participants to develop their own work-life balance and to reflect on how they choose to spend their time.

As a result of this workshop participants will have tools to

  • Prioritise what they choose to do
  • Streamline their use of time
  • Define their own work-life balance
  • Understand the difference between important and urgent

We have hired the services of an external facilitator to offer support in this for academic staff as part of the BRAD programme. Dr Margaret Collins has a 20+ year academic career background and uses her experience and subsequent training in theories such as Neuro-Linguistic Programming to deliver advice on how to increase personal effectiveness in these areas.

You sometimes have to invest a little time to free up more later on – the session on Weds 15th April 2015 13:00 – 16:30 on Talbot campus is a worthwhile investment. There are limited spaces so please do ensure you get one by booking on the Organisational and Staff Development webpages.


Researcher Development Evaluation Toolkit

Are you aware of the new unveiling of the Researcher Development Evaluation Toolkit? This could be a fantastic opportunity for you. The aim of the toolkit, which is developed by the Vitae Impact and Evaluation Group, is to provide researcher developers, policy and decision makers with access to a range of useful evaluation resources including evaluation template shared by our member institutions, case studies, papers, presentation and links.

This toolkit is a great addition to resources on impact and brings together the significant body of work Vitae and the Vitae Impact and Evaluation Group have developed since the original researcher development sector impact framework document first published in 2008. This resource should prove a great support to those evaluating impact whether new to the area or experienced in evaluation.

These resources can help with focusing on what is important when planning and implementing researcher development evaluation projects.

Impact levels for researcher development evaluation – The Impact Framework establishes a clear and robust focus for evaluation of researcher development initiatives and activity. It takes you through five levels of evaluation

Planning your evaluation – A step by step approach to help plan a successful evaluation study.

Evaluation templates – These are useful templates to help in the design of researcher development evaluation surveys.

Evaluation case studies – These researcher development impact case studies are written by higher education institutions in the UK.

Papers and Presentation – These give you access to recent papers and presentations with useful references to help develop successful evaluation studies.

Useful Links – There is additional information available to members on specific topics linked to researcher development evaluation.

There is huge encouragement for the members to contribute more examples of evaluation templates – join the Vitae Member Community for future updates.

British Academy Funding Opportunity: BARSEAs 2015




The British Academy has launched an exciting new funding opportunity for early career researchers working in Humanities and Social Sciences

The British Academy Rising Star Engagement Awards (BARSEAs) provide a means for early career researchers to develop their skills and further career progression through organising events, training and mentoring activities for other early career researchers. Please note though that this is not a funding opportunity to undertake research. 

Applications are invited from early career scholars within 10 years of the award of their doctorate, and ordinarily resident in the United Kingdom. In order to be eligible for this programme, candidates must also be able to demonstrate their academic credentials to be leaders in research through suitable marks of esteem awarded prior to the submission of the application.

 Level of award: up to £15,000.

 BU Internal deadline for submission to RKEO: 14 January 2015

 Deadline for submission of applications: 21 January 2015 at 5pm 

 Deadline for Institutional Approval of applications: 22 January 2015 at 5pm .  Results are expected late February 2015

Awards available for starting date: not earlier than 1 March 2015 and not later than 31 March 2015

For more information on what activities are intended to be supported through this scheme, detailed guidance on what can and cannot be applied for and clarification on eligibility, please see the scheme notes which can be found via e-GAP.

Enquiries related to this scheme can be made to posts@britac.ac.uk but please note that interested parties should register interest through the RKEO Funding Development Team who can provide further details in the first instance.

Early Career Researchers – interested in working with policymakers?

AHRC-funded Early Career Researchers (ECRs) now have the opportunity to apply to join a training programme on Engaging with Government. The three day course will take place in February 2014 and is intended to offer insights into the process of policy making, help ECRs make links with policymakers, and aid in the development of skills needed to engage with policy. Specifically, the course will:

* Help you to see where your research could impact on and contribute to public policy
* Challenge you to consider the policy making process in detail, and how research fits into it
* Improve your influencing and communication skills that are needed to contribute to policymaking.

Eligible researchers are invited to submit applications; further information is available at http://www.ahrc.ac.uk/Funding-Opportunities/Pages/Engaging-with-Government.aspx. Be quick though, the deadline for applications is 21 October 2013.

Calling all Early Career Researchers,

Calling all Early Career Researchers,


We invite you to: An Introduction to the BRAD Framework and Development Sessions– Wednesday the 18th of September 2-3.30pm (location to be confirmed).


The University has created Bournemouth Researcher/Academic Development-BRAD. BRAD is a tailor designed research development framework with supporting development sessions, for BU’s Early Career Researchers (ECR’s). The aims and objectives of BRAD are aligned to the Universities Strategic Plan 2012-2018, our Visions & Values-BU 2018, and Vitae’s researcher development framework. BU is providing professional and personal development sessions and online courses throughout the next academic year 2013-2014, which are all free to attend. The development sessions will cover a range of topics, from SPSS, NVivo, personal effectiveness, research management and publishing in journals and books.


Please email  bapplebygunnill@bournemouth.ac.uk to confirm your attendance to the Introduction to BRAD Session, and to identify yourself as an Early Career Researcher, by the end of this week.

September Early Career Forum – How to get that first grant or paper…..

In September we held the second of our open forum meetings for Early Career Researchers (ECRs).  These meetings provide  an opportunity to ask for advice and guidance from a team of experienced academics and research managers in an informal setting. Questions can be about anything related to research – from publications to projects to funding to research strategy! The Forums also provide an opportunity for ECRs to network with colleagues from across the University.

The September meeting was well attended by ECRs from Schools across the University, and they met with Prof Bogdan Gabrys, Assoc Prof Richard Berger,  plus Jennifer Roddis and myself from the Research and Knowledge Exchange Office.

The discussions related getting started – how to get that first grant, or first paper when you don’t have a track-record (apart from your Phd research). One of the key messages here was to work on your profile, and there are various ways you can approach profile-raising.  Here are some of the key messages that emerged from this theme:

Publishing: Remember, your Phd is a valid piece of research!  You might want to talk to your supervisor about targeting likely publications and jointly publishing on your Phd topic or theme.  Regularly publish if you can.  Get your name out. 

Don’t be afraid to take a tangent:  A useful message from this meeting was don’t be precious about your research area.  You may miss opportunities if you are not prepared to follow a research path on a tangent.  After completing your Phd it can be challenging to find topics to research or publish on.  Take a look at your literature review and early drafts of your Phd.  Examine the abandoned strands of argument and research questions you decided not to pursue.  These could present themselves as great opportunities for research and publication, as they are related to your Phd topic, but not restricted by it.   This is one way that you might expand your research out of your Phd subject.

For example, Richard Berger won a BBC grant that was not strictly in his subject area.  He felt out of his comfort zone for the 8 weeks of the project.  However, he learned enormous amounts about new methodolgieis, delivering research, and presenting his work, which has stood him in good stead for his further research work.

Networking: Getting involved in networks is an effective part of raising your profile.  Attending conferences is a good start. You might start by choosing conferences with the best repuation, or by going to small conferences, where you may find other academics like you!  Over time, you will naturally get to know the other conference attendees (peopl you sit next to etc).    If you find someone you like, you might want to start presenting together. 

This was the experience of one of the senior academics – they started presenting together, then started to write together, then started their own journal on the subjects that they are interested in.   Starting your own journal is not as hard as it sounds.  You could publish online, and academics from around the world like being invited to be on editorial boards.  Its worth a thought. You can try submitting papers to conferences – but bear in mind that there is a lot of competition, with probably a 20% chance of your paper being accepted, but if you don’t try, you won’t know!

Networking funds?  Ask in your School if there are funds available for attending conferences.  Each School has a different way of doing things, so it is worth asking around. Investigate the research councils and other funders, which offer networking grants.   You could organise your own conference – this would be a great opportunity to generate some funds, plus a fantastic way to create your own network.  Host it at the EBC, write about it on the reserach blog, write about it on other blogs, advertise it through online networks.    

Cold calling:  When you are cold-calling, make sure you have something to offer – be honest and be upfront.  The worst that can happen is that you receive a polite no, or are ignored!   Maybe don’t always email potential collaborators. If they are within BU knock on their door and be pursuasive!  Research groups at other institutions may well be looking for speakers on certain topics.  Do some research, find out, offer yourself as a speaker.

Online communities: there are networks of excellence that operate online.  Join in and find like-minded people.   A good opportunity to make connections and raise your profile.

Research Grants:  Take advantage of schemes such as the Grants Academy and Research Proposal Review Service.   Subscribe to the research blog for news on internal funding opportunities.  Bid for Phd studentships. Talk to colleagues – maybe you could collaborate?  Use Research Professional and look for open calls.  Don’t focus only on the big research council grants – these are highly competitive, and generally are looking for a research grant track record.  Look for smaller funding opportunities – charities, foundations and even regional funding agencies are often good places to start.  A good piece of advice:  stay away from scary deadlines until you are ready!   

Prepare to fail! You will get rejections – because everyone gets rejections for papers submitted to journals, and for research grant applications.   When you suffer a rejection your first reaction will be emotional.  Take time to reflect.  Then go back to your proposal and take a constructive look.  The work won’t be wasted, as you will be able to re-work it for another journal or another funder.

BRIAN: make sure your profile is up to date.

Make the most of internal support available:

One of the ECRs who attended has helpfully set up a Facebook page called ECR BU – here is the link:


What next?

If you’re interested in coming to one of the next ECR Forums you will need to book to confirm your attendance (this is so we can order enough food and refreshments in advance). The next Forums are scheduled as follows (rooms to be confirmed):

19 November 12:30 – 15:00 on the Lansdowne Campus

11 December 12:30 – 15:00 on the Talbot Campus

Planes, trains and automobiles: Some reflections for PhD students and early career researchers

I have recently come to the end of a spate of travelling. I imagine this is true for most colleagues as the conference season tends to occur over the holidays, though I’ve made use of a suitcase much more this summer than in previous years. I share some notes below in case they are of use to PhD students and fellow early career researchers, first in relation to conferences and second in relation to research visits.


This summer I have presented on three occasions:

1)      Chaired and presented a paper within a symposium at the British Society of Gerontology, held in Keele.

2)      Chaired and presented a paper within an invited symposium at the World Congress on Active Ageing, held in Glasgow.

3)      Delivered an invited plenary address at the International Conference on Falls and Postural Stability, held in Leeds.

The benefits of attending and presenting at academic conferences are no doubt widely shared. Though, I’ve been presenting at conferences every year since 2006 and note some reflections:

  • Symposia: For the last couple of years I have organised and chaired symposiums rather than presented individual papers. There are several benefits for doing this over individual papers: it encourages you to network and explore overlapping research interests with colleagues long before the conference; can provide an excuse to get some colleagues together over lunch before / after the symposium to discuss potential collaborations; and at the conference a symposium can draw attention to your particular field of research more conspicuously and so can more easily bring others interested in your area into one room at one time.
  • International conferences: I would encourage colleagues to attend international conferences where possible (and I appreciate it’s easier when they’re held in the UK / Europe). It is only at these events that you find that the particular theory or method you’ve been using in your research is peculiar to the UK, and that other countries use their peculiar theory / method, etc. Meeting colleagues from other countries leads you to discover other theories and methods that may help with your work, or that the approach you’ve been taking may help with others’ work.
  • Unexpected benefits: There will always be some conferences that are more useful than others, but I am always pleasantly reminded of the fact that conferences bring unanticipated benefits. It is the chance encounters – when you sit next to someone waiting for the next session, sit next to someone at lunch, etc., – whereby you discover you are sat next to an international expert you’ve yet to meet or someone with very similar research interests who is a potential collaborator. When I flew home from Glasgow I happened to sit next to an academic who researches safety at work from a human factors approach, and we discovered a great deal of overlap between his research and mine on the prevention of falls in older people.

So, I would encourage attending and presenting at conferences, especially among early career researchers. Where possible, I would also encourage chairing symposia, attending international conferences, and being sociable and meeting and talking with all kinds of people as much as possible as you never know who you’ll meet and how they can help with your work.

Research visits

This summer I have made three visits to research departments:

1)      Delivered an invited presentation to the Health Psychology Research Group of Newcastle University.

2)      Visited colleagues at the OPENspace Research Centre, University of Edinburgh.

3)      Delivered an invited presentation to the Applied Psychology: Life-Management Research Group of the University of Zurich.

The benefits of presenting at research departments are similar to presenting at conferences. Though, as this is a newer experience for me I note some reflections:

  • Face-to-face meetings: While it is true that travelling does take you away from your desk and those tasks that you need to get done by certain deadlines, it is worth the effort. Meeting someone in person creates an opportunity to discuss a whole range of topics and find out information on things that just would not be discussed by email or when you’re on the phone and cannot read the others’ non-verbal communication. It also gives you the opportunity to really assess whether or not you can work with someone: it is not only a colleague’s CV that determines whether you can work together well or not, but whether they like to work in a similar style to you. It is sometimes the latter that takes greater importance when choosing between potential collaborators on grant proposals.
  • A different presentation: Rather than delivering a paper at a conference, at a research department you can give a different kind of presentation. You can discuss some work you are about / intend to do, or throw out problems to discuss with the audience, etc. These kinds of presentations may be more useful in establishing projects for collaboration than simply discussing work you have already completed / published.
  • Dedicated time to discuss an idea: My visit to Edinburgh was useful from this point of view as although I did not give a presentation, I spent about five hours with two professors discussing an idea for a future research project. The time was very useful in moving our discussion on a wider general research problem down to a narrow research question for a project. Likewise, via BUDI (www.bournemouth.ac.uk/dementia-institute), Prof Anthea Innes and I hosted colleagues from around Europe recently to spend an intensive couple of days to work up a grant proposal. These face-to-face meetings are very useful for rapidly moving ideas into concrete plans.

So, I would encourage visiting other university departments and to accept invitations to present to research groups. Such opportunities can provide valuable time and space to develop research ideas and progress collaborations. They can also be quite fun: for my last evening in Zurich I managed to invite myself to a Turkish restaurant with a Turkish group to watch the Turkish football team play Manchester United at old Trafford. It proved to be a different venue for discussing research (which we managed to do) than an office and it was an entertaining football match too!

Samuel Nyman

Psychology Research Centre

Design, Engineering & Computing

At an early stage in your research career? Then come to one of our ECR Forums!

Over the next six months we are running a series of forums for academic colleagues who are at an early stage in their research career.  The first forum, held in July was a success and you can find out more about this session here.

The forums will be open, informal sessions where you can meet with a group of experienced academics and Julie Northam and Julia Taylor from the R&KEO to discuss anything you like to do with research. From publications to projects to funding to research strategy we will be on hand to help and advise. Lunch / refreshments will be provided.

 The forums will be held at the following times and you will need to book to confirm your attendance (this is so we can order enough food and refreshments in advance)

17 September 12:30 – 15:00 The Octagon, Talbot Campus

19 November 12:30 – 15:00 EB702, The Executive Business Centre, Lansdowne

11 December 12:30 – 15:00 Casterbridge, Talbot Campus