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EP/J019941/1 - Integrating the Human Value of Research through Public Engagement - Impacts for Civil Society

Research Perspectives grant details from EPSRC portfolio

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Professor SL O'Hara EP/J019941/1 - Integrating the Human Value of Research through Public Engagement - Impacts for Civil Society

Principal Investigator - Research & Graduate Services, University of Nottingham

Other Investigators

Miss S Clancy, Co InvestigatorMiss S Clancy

Ms HG Hurman, Co InvestigatorMs HG Hurman

Scheme

RCUK PER Catalysts

Research Areas

Other Other

Start Date

04/2012

End Date

03/2015

Value

£302,437

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Grant Description

Summary and Description of the grant

We will use the Catalyst Fund to create a Community of Practice (CoP) that will build on existing PE activities to increase the momentum of culture change through a programme of activities responding to the conclusions and recommendations of our recent reviews of public and community engagement. This aims to meet our objectives of stimulating additional activity and embedding culture change in relation to public engagement with research. In the context of this application, 'the public' has been defined in three ways:

- Health users and communities, including patient user groups
- Third sector/civil society organisations and social enterprises, as a route to disadvantaged and harder to reach communities
- Citizens and service users - 'the person in the street' - engagement through the arts, sports, local authority engagement schools and the teaching community.

All three areas include recognition of citizen engagement through technology and information exchange and are predicated on environmental and technological sustainability. An on-line community will support the exchange of research ideas and contacts and care will be taken to communicate with people from different 'public' groups in different and audience-appropriate ways.

The University is fully committed to supporting the RCUK's Concordat for Engaging the Public with Research, which has at its heart the idea that engaging with the public should be part of the role of researchers in any discipline - to improve the quality of research and its impact, widen research horizons, enhance communication and influence skills, build new partnerships and, ultimately, to support social change and the 'public good'. Excellent practice abounds across research priority areas which the University has identified and indeed across all disciplines but this is yet to be fully coordinated and evaluated.

Our approach to developing this plan and its subsequent implementation to catalyse cultural change is fully inclusive. This has included the establishment of an internal Focus Group, to share expertise and to consider how to transfer PE practice across disciplines. This resulted in the proposal to use research engagement processes and models from health-care research - where the needs of patient user groups are translated into new research questions - and the dialogue based model of engagement used in discussions with the third sector and social enterprises,to develop new PE activity.
Therefore, the focus group proposed a structured response to PE - with third sector and civil society organisations, the health user community and difficult to reach groups and the wider public. To ensure long-term impact and real sustainability our approach will create pathways into harder to reach communities, a demographic that does not traditionally engage with HE, rather than the standard/usual user demographic (middle class/educated). This includes an intention to go out into public spaces - sports stadia/pubs/retail outlets/arts venues - and a mechanism for holding researchers to account. By these means - and an increased profile internally for PE with research, as well as workload modelling to allow for a focus on PE - we will access an academic/research community who either do not think that PE is their responsibility or believe that only other academics would be interested in their field of research. This creates long-term potential for impact and sustainability internally.

We aim to invest in the development of effectiveness measures for PE activities by providing additional support to the work of the Community Partnerships unit to expand their research in the use of a social impact tool for measurement/metrics, whilst using the COP as a group for developing metrics to better benchmark and evaluate staff engagement and cultural capital.

Structured Data / Microdata


Grant Event Details:
Name: Integrating the Human Value of Research through Public Engagement - Impacts for Civil Society - EP/J019941/1
Start Date: 2012-04-01T00:00:00+00:00
End Date: 2015-03-31T00:00:00+00:00

Organization: University of Nottingham

Description: We will use the Catalyst Fund to create a Community of Practice (CoP) that will build on existing PE activities to increase the momentum of culture change through a programme of activities responding to the conclusions and recommendations of our recent rev ...