Tagged / impact

Building Evidence for REF Impact Case Studies

MONDAY 11th February

A new workshop has been arranged for researchers who are building an impact case and are looking for guidance or reassurance about developing evidence.

Through this workshop researchers will see how expectations regarding evidence relate to their own impact cases, and will improve their understanding of what is needed to make sure the evidence is strong and what activities are required to put in place all the pieces before submission.

The workshop will be held on the Talbot Campus. More details can be found here.

Successful Away Day for the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal and Perinatal Health

CMMPH held its annual away day on the 12th December and was led by the Centre leads, Professors Edwin van Teijlingen and Susan Way. It is an opportunity for BU staff, PGR students and Visiting Faculty to come together and share their research development and impact over the previous year. Time is also given to thinking ahead to ensure the Centre is meeting its aims of promoting the health and wellbeing of women, babies and their families by enhancing practice through education, research and scholarship.

The morning started with an update about EDGE, an NHS IT platform that provides a governance framework for tracking NHS research studies. Doctoral students whose studies require NHS ethics approval will have their research tracked through this system. Other discussions included an update on REF and BU2025, developing a publications strategy and match-funded PhD studentships.

  

Luisa Cescutti-Butler                            Malika Felton

Several PGR students presented their work to date, ranging from rising caesarean section rates in hospitals in Nepal (Sulochana Dhakal working towards Probationary Review); acute and chronic effects of slow and deep breathing upon women who have pregnancy-induced hypertension (Malika Felton working towards Major Review); updating the understanding perineal practice at the time of birth by midwives (Sara Stride working towards Probationary Review) and women’s experiences of caring for their late preterm babies (Dr Luisa Cescutti-Butler recently awarded doctorate). The presentations were all excellent and produced a lot of questions and discussion. Well done to all those who presented.

 

Sulochana Dhakal                                                 Sara Stride

The afternoon was used as an opportunity to think ahead about future collaborative research, how this fits in with the Centre aims and objectives as well as meeting the university’s ambitions to be a world class organisation.

The day was really enjoyable with a lot of positive feedback.

 

Edwin and Sue

Transparency in research: Health Research Authority survey results

The HRA recently carried out a survey which aimed to establish some of the current obstacles to transparency, and to identify future opportunities to improve practices.
The survey was advertised to researchers, researcher managers, sponsors and funders in order to collate views surrounding research transparency.

You can see the results here on the HRA website.

It’s vital that research participants are informed about the results of research, and in the beginning they are told about the research and implications, in a transparent fashion.

BU has access to the ClinicalTrials.gov system so get in touch if you would like access. This is a great opportunity to register your study and study results in the public domain.
Despite the name, the system may be used for other clinical research projects.

UK hits milestone of sequencing 100,000 whole genomes in the NHS

Yesterday it was announced that the 100,000 Genomes Project, led by Genomics England in partnership with the NHS, has reached its goal of sequencing 100,000 whole genomes from NHS patients.

The project was launched in 2012 by former Prime Minister David Cameron. BU is on board with this project and has access to the data collected, providing great opportunities for research.

You can read the NIHR article here.

Free FutureLearn courses

The FutureLearn website has a whole host of different courses you can take advantage of whether for personal interest or educational needs, and for free.

Here are some courses that are specific to (clinical) research. Enjoy! –

*to be done in addition to the mandatory ethics modules.

Suggest an idea for clinical research – NIHR opportunity

Do you feel there are any gaps in health and social care research? The NIHR are advertising the opportunity to submit your own idea, or ideas, for potential future research projects.

You can submit your idea here, and read example suggestions to help inspire you!

Once submitted, the NIHR will compare the suggestion with existing or ongoing research and will likewise seek advice from a number of stakeholders including patients and members of the public.

Remember that support is on offer at BU if you are thinking of introducing your research ideas into the NHS – email the Research Ethics mailbox, and take a look at the Clinical Governance blog.

New paper on Nepal by FHSS’s Dr. Nirmal Aryal

Many congratulations to Dr. Nirmal Aryal, postdoctoral researcher in FHSS for his new publication ‘Blood pressure and hypertension in people living at high altitude in Nepal’ in Hypertension Research [1]. Hypertension Research is a prestigious journal published by Nature (Impact Factor of 3.4).

This is the first study of its kind to collect cardiovascular disease and risk factors related information at four different altitude levels above or equal to 2800 m and from ethnically diverse samples. This paper highlighted that despite known hypoxia-induced favourable physiological responses on blood pressure, high altitude residents (>2800 m) in Nepal might have an increased risk of raised blood pressure associated with lifestyle factors and clinicians should be aware of it. The authors previously published a systematic review paper summarizing global evidence on the relationship between blood pressure and high altitude [2].

This publication is available online at: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41440-018-0138-x and pre-refereed version is available in BURO.

Well done!

Dr. Pramod Regmi & Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

 

References:

  1. Aryal N, Weatherall M, Bhatta YKD, Mann S. Blood pressure and hypertension in people living at high altitude in Nepal. Hypertension Res 2018 doi: 10.1038/s41440-018-0138-x[published Online First: Epub Date]|
  2. Aryal N, Weatherall M, Bhatta YKD, Mann S. Blood pressure and hypertension in adults permanently living at high altitude: a systematic review and meta-analysis. High Alt Med Biol 2016; 17: 185-193.

Why should we care about your research?: Think impact

Research impact is a relatively new concept introduced by the UK Research Council in 2009. In fewer than 10 years, it has rapidly gained momentum such that it has now become an integral part of the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021 accounting for 25% of the total score (increased by 5% from the REF 2014). For research grant proposals in the UK and in many other countries, applicants need to clearly demonstrate their ‘impact plan’ (i.e. who is going to benefit and how?) and present ‘pathways to impact’ activities (i.e. what are you doing to increase the chance of your research making a difference?). Prof. Mark Reed on his website (www.fasttractimpact.com) suggests that reviewers of grant applications are now looking for costing of around 5% to 10% of the total budget in ‘pathways to impact’ activities.

During a one-day impact workshop on August this year Prof. Reed said that he thinks one word that best represents ‘research impact’ is ‘benefit’. Researchers use ‘public money’ which could otherwise be used in other important areas, so it shouldn’t be surprising if funders or the public ask ‘what benefit (or effect or change) is likely to come from your research?’ Thus, research should be relevant to the pressing need of the people and render benefit to the individuals or society, beyond academia.

Although impact of the research may not be predicted at the very outset and could be affected by external factors, it is now commonly agreed by the expert scientific community and research funders that well-planned impact activities with pre-determined impact goal increase the likelihood of achieving research impact. Research impact is relevant not only to established researchers but also to research students. Postgraduate research students could develop impact plans and pathways to impact activities which are feasible in a given time and available resources. Pathways to impact activities may include writing a research blog, newspaper articles, building a network with key people or organisations via social media (e.g. Twitter, LinkedIn). It will help them to ‘stand out’ from the crowd and to become more competitive when looking for jobs.

Planning for research impact and thinking about ways in which to enhance the impact will help give an answer to the question ‘why should care about your work?’

These references will help to understand research impact in depth:

Reed, M.S. (2018) The Research Impact Handbook, 2nd Edition, Fast Track Impact.

www.fasttrackimpact.com

www.stephenckemp.co.uk

 

Dr. Nirmal Aryal

Postdoctoral Researcher (Impact)

Faculty of Health and Social Sciences

 

International development for impact – workshop spaces available

On both 1st and 22nd August 2018, Prof Mark Reed will be delivering a one-day workshop to introduce potential applicants to the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) and how to approach applications to the this £1.5 billion UK government fund.

To reserve your place, BU academics should contact Rhyannan Hurst, stating on which date you wish to attend.

Please note that reservations are first come, first served and must be sent to Rhyannan by 17:00 on Friday, 27th July.

Benefits:

  • Get advice on how to write a fundable Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) proposal from a former GCRF panelist
  • Explore evidence-based principles to underpin the development of GCRF impact summaries, pathways to impact, ODA statements and Theories of Change
  • Learn how to use tools for identifying international partners, stakeholders and publics, and identifying potential impacts, showing how a Theory of Change can be constructed from the bottom-up, based on impact goals identified in-country
  • Discover tools that can enable GCRF teams to evaluate planned impacts as well as tracking opportunistic impacts as they arise
  • Learn how to get your research into policy, wherever you work in the world, by building trust, working with intermediaries and designing effective policy briefs that you can use with the people you come into relationship with

The training is based on the latest research evidence and takes a unique relational approach to deliver wide-reaching and lasting impacts. As part of the session you will receive a free copy of Prof Reed’s acclaimed book, The Research Impact Handbook for future reference.

After the workshop, you are invited to an optional free follow-up programme over five weeks, so you can apply what you have learned. You can work through these steps yourself from the handbook, but by signing up to take these steps online, you get access to extra material. Each step consist of a 6 minute video with accompanying text and tasks. Prof Reed continues to answer your questions via email after the course, and works with the training organiser to provide more in-depth support for selected participants (via up to two one hour individual consultations by phone or Skype and written feedback on your work).

See Fast Track Impact’s resources for GCRF applicants and their blog on how to write a fundable GCRF proposal.  Find out more about the fund and the open calls on the UK Research and innovation website for this scheme.

 

About the trainer

Prof Mark Reed is a recognised international expert in impact research with >150 publications and >12,000 citations. He holds a Research England and N8 funded chair at Newcastle University, is research lead for an international charity and has won two Research Council prizes for the impact of his research. His work has been funded by ESRC, NERC, AHRC and BBSRC, and he regularly collaborates and publishes with scholars from the arts and humanities to physical sciences. He regularly sits on funding panels and reviews programmes of research for the Research Councils.

He has run workshops to help researchers prepare for GCRF funding across the UK in collaboration with the Research Councils, the UK Collaborative on Development Sciences (UKCDS) and the N8 Research Partnership. He worked with cattle herders in the Kalahari for his PhD and since then has done research funded by the EU, British Academy and the United Nations with marginal agricultural communities across the developing world. His most recent book, published by Routledge is based on his work for the UN Convention to Combat Desertification and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

He has been commissioned to write reports and talk to international policy conferences by the United Nations and has been a science advisor to the BBC. Mark provides training and advice to Universities, research funders, NGOs and policy-makers internationally, and regularly works with business. Find out more about his work at: www.profmarkreed.com or follow him on Twitter @profmarkreed

Fast Track Impact is an international training company working in the Higher Education and research and innovation sectors. Our mission is to change the way researchers generate and share knowledge, so that their ideas can change the world.

What people are saying about this course:

A selection of quotes from feedback forms:

“I liked the group discussion as well as the depth and breadth of the information given on GCRF.”

“The discussion about impact and GCRF was particularly useful, with practical stakeholder engagement tools and tips.”

“Advice and insights into fundable impact-oriented research”

 “I will change the way I write impact summaries and pathways to impact in future GCRF proposals.”

 “I will change how I plan to influence policy change through GCRF funded research.”

 “I’ve learned how to be strategic [about impact] and ask myself self hard questions.” 

  “Great practical tips.  Overall much to take away both theoretically and practically.”

“Wonderfully insightful, useful and energising.”

Medical Research showcase at CoPMRE’s Spring Visiting Faculty Day

The Centre of Postgraduate Medical Research & Education (CoPMRE) held its Spring Visiting Faculty Day at the Executive Business Centre.  Fourteen posters (VF Programme Spring 2018) were presented showcasing the breadth of collaborative projects being undertaken by BU and local clinicians.  The Best Poster prize was awarded to Dr Paul Whittington, Department of Computing & Informatics, Faculty of Science and Technology, for his presentation entitled Automatic Detection of User Abilities through the SmartAbility Framework.  Professor Tamas Hickish, judge, felt that all the posters were excellent and address important health care issues.  Paul’s poster was chosen as the research was generated by a deep understanding of disability, the use a mobile phone technology and generalisability to significant areas of health care need such as stroke and frailty. As such his work is scalable and feasible.

Visiting Faculty Days are a great opportunity to share innovative ideas and research.  The event was very well received and links for possible further collaboration have already been formed as a result of networking.  Our next Visiting Faculty Day will be held in December.

Enhance your Impact in Preparation for the REF

The Research and Knowledge Exchange Office (RKEO) through the Research & Knowledge Exchange Development Framework (RKEDF) has a number of workshops in the coming months to assist you in developing and enhancing the impact that you can make with your research, with particular reference to the REF.

Please follow the links above to find out more and to book. You will then receive a meeting request giving the room location. Many of these events have input from external presenters; please ensure that you are in the room and ready to commence at the given start time.

If you would like to discuss impact outside these workshops, please contact the RKEO Knowledge and Impact Team.

Enhance your Impact in Preparation for the REF

The Research and Knowledge Exchange Office (RKEO) through the Research & Knowledge Exchange Development Framework (RKEDF) has a number of workshops in the coming months to assist you in developing and enhancing the impact that you can make with your research, with particular reference to the REF.

Please follow the links above to find out more and to book. You will then receive a meeting request giving the room location. Many of these events have input from external presenters; please ensure that you are in the room and ready to commence at the given start time.

If you would like to discuss impact outside these workshops, please contact the RKEO Knowledge and Impact Team.