Tagged / postdoctoral

BU Briefing – Parametric investigations to enhance thermal performance of paraffin

Our BU briefing papers are designed to make our research outputs accessible and easily digestible so that our research findings can quickly be applied – whether to society, culture, public policy, services, the environment or to improve quality of life. They have been created to highlight research findings and their potential impact within their field. 

Research and development in clean energy technologies is a direct response to the need of generating 50% of energy requirements through renewable sources by 2050 as set by the EU initiative. Renewable energy sources have significant potentials to address key issues in terms of depleting natural energy resources, rocketing energy prices and security.

This paper introduces a two-dimensional finite element computational model which investigates thermal behaviour of a novel geometrical configuration of shell and tube based latent heat storage (LHS) system. It also presents an insight into how to augment the thermal behaviour of paraffin based LHS system which helped inform novel design solutions for wide-ranging practical utilisation in both domestic and commercial heat storage applications.

Click here to read the briefing paper.

For more information about the research, contact Professor Zulfiqar Khan at zkhan@bournemouth.ac.uk or Kamran Tabeshf at KTabeshf@bournemouth.ac.uk.
To find out how your research output could be turned into a BU Briefing, contact research@bournemouth.ac.uk.

Careers guidance resources for researchers

career-developmentIn October we launched a suite of careers guidance resources for researchers and their managers. The resources include detailed guidance on how to progress from a research career to an academic career as well as information for PhD students on postdoctoral research positions. There is also information on other career pathways including administration/management within HE and research careers outside of HE. The resources have been enhanced over the past few months and now include a number of case studies for different career pathways.

Careers guidance resources for researchers

careerIn October we launched a suite of careers guidance resources for researchers and their managers. The resources include detailed guidance on how to progress from a research career to an academic career as well as information for PhD students on postdoctoral research positions. There is also information on other career pathways including administration/management within HE and research careers outside of HE. The resources have been enhanced over the past few months and now include a number of case studies for different career pathways.

Europe needs Post-Docs!

You can apply to the Call for Expressions of Interest  if you are from the EU Member States and from Associated Countries: Albania, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Faeroe Islands, Iceland, Israel, Liechtenstein, Montenegro, Norway, Republic of Moldova, Switzerland, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia and Turkey.

You will also need to meet the following educational requirements:

A level of education corresponding to completed university studies of at least three (3) years attested by a diploma and

  1. at least five (5) years of professional experience in one of the fields listed below:
    – OR –
  2. a doctoral diploma in one of the fields listed below (see sections II and VI of the call):

Biology, Chemistry, Natural Sciences, Life Sciences, Biochemistry, Oceanography / Marine Sciences, Nanotechnology, Nanobiotechnology, Veterinary, Engineering, Mathematics, Physics, Computer Sciences, Statistics, Material Sciences, Economics, Political Sciences, Social Sciences, Educational Sciences, Psychology , Geography, Environmental Sciences, Agricultural Sciences, Agricultural Engineering, Meteorology, Ecology, Forestry, Geology, Hydrological Sciences, Medical Sciences, Pharmacy, Nutritional Sciences

If this does not apply to you but you have a colleague who would benefit from this opportunity, please pass this information on to them.

Welcoming our newest Erasmus Mundus TECHNO II post-doc

I am Dr Helmi Norman, an Erasmus Mundus post-doctoral researcher at the Faculty of Science and Technology, Bournemouth University (BU). I arrived here late December 2014 and will be attached here until the end of June 2015. My research interest is in the area of emerging learning technologies, where I am particularly interested in the mobile, online and ubiquitous technologies that can applied for 21st century learning.

Currently, at BU, I am working with Dr Huseyin Dogan on three main research initiatives. First, we are working with the Technology-Enhanced Learning Division under the Centre for Excellence in Learning at BU on creating a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) for education technology. The MOOC created could serve as platform for educators in exploring potential teaching and learning technologies for promoting learner-driven innovations. I have been previously involved with a national MOOC initiative in Malaysia and the BU MOOC initiative can further spark new cross-regional research between Europe and Asia in this field.

Second, we are currently studying on social media addiction which is currently becoming a serious issue and we are investigating effective approaches and techniques of intervening with the addiction. Third, we are also currently working on a research about peer assessment using online learning technologies.

Feel free to contact me on future collaborations at mnorman@bournemouth.ac.uk or helmi.norman@gmail.com.  


BU has two Erasmus Mundus Academic Partnerships TECHNO and TECHNO II partnerships. Please contact Dr Demetra Andreou if you would like more information: dandreou@bournemouth.ac.uk

2014-15 Round of the British Academy’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme – Now Open!

The British Academy is now inviting applications to their Postdoctoral Fellowship scheme. The aim of the awards is to offer opportunities for outstanding early career researchers to strengthen their experience of research and teaching in a university environment which will develop their curriculum vitae and improve their prospects of obtaining permanent lecturing posts by the end of the Fellowship. The primary emphasis is on completion of a significant piece of publishable research, which will be assisted by full membership of an academic community of established scholars working in similar fields. A number of 45 awards are expected to be offered. 
This is an e-submission. The deadline for applicants to this scheme is 5pm, 08/10/2014, with the approver deadline at 5pm, 09/10/2014. However, please note that RKEO’s internal deadline will be 02/10/2014.
Please see the competition timetable for 2014-15 below:
  • Application forms, Outline Stage: available from  27 August 2014
  • Applicant deadline, Outline Stage: 8 October 2014
  • Result of Outline Stage announced: 21 January 2015
  • Application deadline, Second Stage: 25 February 2015
  • Final results confirmed: May 2015
  • Awards available for starting date: Not earlier than 1 September 2015 and not later than 1 January 2016

If you need any guidance or support please contact your RKE Support Officer.


MRC – PET neuroscience specialist postdoctoral training programme 2012


PET is a technology of key importance for understanding physiology and pharmacological mechanisms and for translation of discoveries through to the clinic. PET imaging techniques have good potential to provide high impact in both diagnosis and therapy across a range of diseases.

This call is for proposals of up to four years in duration for neurosciences research that depends on the use of PET imaging. The goal is to address continuing shortfalls in specialist post-doctoral training to enable skills development for PET imaging. The call for proposals follows up on a previously successful pilot scheme which made three awards in 2009, which sought to address two principal challenges for PET imaging in neuroscience research.

These were that:

  • Major academic centres are establishing new PET centres in the UK even though difficulties already exist in recruiting scientists with the necessary radiochemical, analysis or applications expertise;
  • It is difficult to develop or gain access to novel molecular probes for innovative applications of PET imaging.

These issues remain pertinent for the field, and this new call will seek to build further capacity in the field. Those Institutions successful under the pilot scheme will be welcome to bid under this open competitive call, where they will be assessed on an equal basis with other applicants. There is no assumption that the awards previously made will automatically continued.

Through the MRC the community is working with the MHRA to find ways to address the regulatory issues experienced by the community; this experts group includes representation from many UK Institutions engaged in PET research.

Objectives and remit

The scheme is being run through the MRC Neurosciences and Mental Health Board (NMHB) and is intended to allow suitably qualified post-doctoral researchers to both train in specialist PET-related disciplines and then potentially contribute towards the development of novel PET molecular imaging methodologies (for example, new molecular probes) that will benefit the neurosciences. It is hoped that at least four awards each employing at least one post-doctoral research assistant will be made.

To be employed on these grants, the trainee PET researchers recruited by the Institution are expected to have a clinical or non-clinical PhD in one or more of the following scientific disciplines:

  • chemistry
  • neuropharmacology
  • mathematics
  • biological sciences with experience of working in clinical imaging or with animal or cellular models

Key elements will be:

  • The provision by the host institution of a good training environment; and
  • Evidence that following an appropriate period of skills training, the trainee will have opportunities for independent research using PET imaging in an academic or industrial scientific environment.

Each award will be made for up to four years, with at least two years specifically designated for appropriate skills training relevant to PET. After training, the following years would be designated for application of these acquired skills to a neuroscience imaging problem. These time periods are suggested as a guideline only; the NMHB will be flexible if a good case is made for a different approach to suit a particular project, candidate or environment.

Further details are provided, under general features, training requirements and scientific details.

Funding available

£2m is available from the MRC’s Neuroscience and Mental Health Board. Applications will be considered by NMHB at its meeting to be held on 6th and 7th March 2013. Applications must be submitted via the JeS system by 4pm on the 25th September 2012. Applications should be submitted as a Standard Proposal, a Research Grant, to the NMHB September call and should include prefix to the title – PET Call.

Interaction with industry partners will be desirable, and preference will be given to applications that can offer evidence of meaningful collaboration with partners who are able to complement the bid and strengthen the training component of the award or otherwise enhance potential for success.

Awards may be made either to the same or to different academic centres – this has not been pre-specified and will depend upon the quality of the proposals.

For more information on General Features, Training Requirements, Scientific Details, Networking, and Advice to Applicants, please click here

Assessment process

Applications must be submitted via the JeS system by 4pm on the 25th September 2012. Applications should be submitted as a Standard Proposal, a Research Grant, to the NMHB September call and should include prefix to the title – PET Call.

Applications will be assessed by reviewers in November and December 2012. A specially convened review panel will meet to make triage decisions on the applications. Following the triage meeting, applicants will be contacted with the outcome. Applications will either be declined or go forward for consideration at the Neurosciences and Mental Health Board (NMHB) in March 2013. The Panel’s triage decision is final and not open to appeal. For those proposals going forward to the Board, applicants will be invited to respond to the referee comments. The timeline for this will be relatively tight.

NMHB members will receive the applications, external reviewers’ comments and the applicant’s response. Awards by the Board at the March meeting will be made in competition with other proposals at the Board and only research proposals of high quality will be funded.

Final decisions will be made by the Board and applicants will be informed of the decision and provided with Board feedback in March 2013. The Board’s decision is final and not open to appeal.

In addition to using the standard assessment criteria, where appropriate, key considerations for the Panel will be:

  • Eligibility for the call;
  • Quality and suitability of the research environment and of the facilities for the proposed work;
  • Quality and suitability of the general training environment(s)
  • Arrangements for mentoring of the post-holder once the grant-funded post is offered and accepted
  • Evidence that following the award, the trainee(s) will have opportunities for independent research using PET imaging in an academic or industrial scientific environment
  • Suitability of the specific training proposal and project(s) for developing the trainee’s skills and career;
  • Potential importance of the specific research being conducted as part of the training;
  • Strength and clarity of any collaboration and the potential for collaborations to strengthen the PET community in the neurosciences
  • Value for money.

If you have a query about this call please email: Joanna Jenkinson

E-mail: joanna.jenkinson@headoffice.mrc.ac.uk

 The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

BBSRC – Raising awareness of commercialisation in postgraduate and postdoctoral scientists

 Closing Date for Applications: 25th May 2012

 This is  an exciting opportunity available to postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers* within the plant, microbial and environmental science disciplines, or those with an interest in these fields.

 Building on last year’s success, Syngenta, the world’s largest agribusiness company, are again hosting a Plant, Microbial and Environmental sciences workshop, at their world-class Jealott’s Hill research facility as part of the wider Biotechnology YES programme.

 We are particularly keen to attract teams from the plant, microbial and environmental sciences to this high profile workshop that will provide a unique opportunity for the participants to spend time at a world-class research facility, with the chance to have a look around and meet world-leading scientists. The workshop will have an emphasis on challenges such as:

  •  food security and production in a sustainable environment and using lower levels of inputs such as water, phosphorus and nitrogen;
  •  the effects of climate change on food production;
  •  the effects of global biodiversity collapse on ecosystem services;
  •  the production of liquid fuels without impacting on the environment, more effective strategies to control organisms such as crop pests, pathogenic bacteria and disease;
  •  making technology and marketing concepts to integrate crop protection with seeds more attractive to growers.

YES is an innovative competition aimed at raising awareness of the commercialisation of bioscience research. It is co-organised by the Biotechnology & Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and the University of Nottingham Institute for Enterprise & Innovation (UNIEI). As part of the wider national YES programme, we are also currently encouraging applications from teams of bioscientists who wish to enter the 2012 Biotechnology YES and Environment YES competitions.

Entrants form imaginary companies and bid for funding to commercialise their ideas. Through 3-day workshops taking place across the UK this autumn, participants receive training from entrepreneurs, patent lawyers and industry representatives in the business skills necessary to recognise, protect and harness the commercial potential of scientific research outputs.

The culmination of the competition is the preparation and presentation, by each team, of a hypothetical business plan for a new start-up company.  The competition is therefore fully in line with the government’s objective of encouraging economic and social impact and the competition is endorsed by a number of bio-based industries through their sponsorship.  In addition, the winning team of the national Biotechnology YES competition will receive a prize of £1000 and an invitation to the Rice Business Plan Competition in the United States.

Since its launch seventeen years ago, Biotechnology YES has provided entrepreneurial business training for over 3000 researchers from across the UK. In 2010, an independent review of the scheme highlighted that many former participants found YES to be influential in developing their careers, with several starting their own companies and many more becoming business professionals within the bioscience sector. (Review of Biotechnology YES).

 The closing date for entries into this year’s competition is 25 May 2012.

 More information may be found at the website: www.biotechnologyYES.co.uk or those interested in participating may wish to contact Tracey Hassall-Jones (tracey@biotechnologyyes.co.uk). 


Success of Postdoctoral Development Programme in HSC

The School of Health and Social Care has recently launched a new postdoctoral development programme aimed at those staff who have completed their doctoral studies. Prof Elizabeth Rosser (Associate Dean) provides an overview of how the programme works and the benefits to those involved…

A new postdoctoral development programme has commenced in HSC to offer those who have completed their doctoral studies the opportunity to move forward collectively as well as individually in their research endeavours. 

Initially the programme has focused on Nurses with the idea of running the programme again using an interprofessional group within the School, and maybe this could ultimately be a University-wide initiative with interschool activity?

The programme has commenced focusing on developing the skills of participants in the area of bidding for research grants, sharing the experiences of those with a range of bidding activity under their belts and encouraging all members to engage in undertaking one bid during the life of the programme.

This 6-month programme which commenced February 2011 has already made an impact.  One afternoon per month the group of 10 postdoctoral academics, drawn from each of the research centres in the School,  engage with the professoriate in learning the skills of bidding for research grants, sharing the lessons learned, as well as the challenges and the pitfalls.  Whilst there are key areas addressed during the programme, essentially the action learning group is informal with the programme content arising from queries and suggestions from the group itself.  The atmosphere offers an air of excitement and is informal and very informative with a buzz of spontaneity and active discussion.  The testimonials provided here show just how useful the programme has been to participants as well as to the HSC professoriate.

We need to do more of this….

Professor Elizabeth Rosser

Associate Dean (Nursing)

School of Health and Social Care