Dec 04 2018

With Christmas fast approaching, here in the REF team we are already turning our attention to 2019 and considering how our REF readiness activities will start to take shape. In terms of our preparations around impact, the new year will herald a raft of targeted activities to help ensure that our case study submission in 2020 is the strongest it can possibly be.

Key deadlines

A few key dates in 2019 for our impact case study leads to bear in mind are as follows:

  • 28 February 2019 – Submission of revised impact case study drafts (using new REF2021 template)
  • February/March 2019 – Impact Action Plan mid-point review meetings
  • March 2019 – Recording of short impact videos (via Marketing & External Relations)
  • 8 April 2019 – Chris Simms informal peer review workshop
  • April 2019 – Planned formal internal peer review of impact case studies
  • June 2019 – Planned formal external peer review of impact case studies

The above dates are complemented by the University’s ‘SECRET’ researcher development programme, which is designed to ensure that our researchers are ‘REF ready’. Further details can be found through our Salford Advantage pages at: https://www.salford.ac.uk/staff-development

The programme includes our monthly one-to-one storytelling mentoring sessions with Chris Simms (bookings through research-impact@salford.ac.uk), impact writing retreats, bidding and funding information sessions, REF briefings and much more.

Alternatively, training of interest is also listed on our Training Calendar, which can be found at: www.salford.ac.uk/ref

 

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Nov 15 2018

The initial set of guidance materials for REF2021 (including guidance on submissions and panel guidelines) was published in July 2018 and consultation with the sector was concluded on 15th October 2018.

The final guidance is due to be published in January 2019, after which time the University will hold a series of briefing meetings through our appointed Unit of Assessment Leads to update colleagues on the key details.

In the meantime, the salient points to take from the latest REF consultation documents on impact case study submission is as follows:

 

Definition of impact for the REF

For the purposes of the REF, impact is defined as an effect on, change or benefit to the economy, society, culture, public policy or services, health, the environment or quality of life, beyond academia.

Impact includes, but is not limited to, an effect on, change or benefit to:

  • the activity, attitude, awareness, behaviour, capacity, opportunity, performance, policy, practice, process or understanding
  • of an audience, beneficiary, community, constituency, organisation or individuals
  • in any geographic location whether locally, regionally, nationally or internationally

Impact also includes the reduction or prevention of harm, risk, cost or other negative effects.

Impacts will be assessed in terms of their ‘reach and significance’ regardless of the geographic location in which they occurred, whether locally, regionally, nationally or internationally.

**Further guidance about how panels will assess the case studies against the criteria of reach and significance is found separately at www.salford.ac.uk/ref under Impact Evidence Collection.**

 

Submission requirements

  • Each submission must include impact case studies (REF3 template) describing specific impacts that have occurred during the assessment period (1 August 2013 to 31 July 2020) that were underpinned by excellent research undertaken in the submitted unit. The impacts may have been at any stage of development or maturity during this period, so long as some effect, change or benefit meeting the definition of impact took place during that period.

 

  • This may include, for example, impacts at an early stage, or impacts that may have started prior to 1 August 2013 but continued into the period 1 August 2013 to 31 July 2020. Case studies will be assessed in terms of the reach and significance of the impact that occurred only during the period 1 August 2013 to 31 July 2020, and not in terms of any impact prior to this period or potential future or anticipated impact after this period.

 

  • The underpinning research must have been produced by the submitting HEI during the period 1 January 2000 to 31 December 2020. Underpinning research may be a body of work produced over a number of years or may be the output(s) of a particular project. It may be produced by one or more individuals.

 

  • When writing case studies, submitting units should refer to the guidelines for presenting quantitative data set out in the ‘Guidelines for standardising quantitative indicators of impact within REF case studies’. These guidelines have been developed to enable more consistent presentation of quantitative evidence in case studies. This document (and a summary thereof) can be found separately at www.salford.ac.uk/ref under Impact Evidence Collection.

 

  • More than one submitted unit (within the same HEI or in different HEIs) may include the same impact within their respective case studies, so long as each submitted unit produced excellent research that made a distinct and material contribution to the impact.

 

  • Impact case studies continued from examples submitted in 2014 will be eligible for submission in REF 2021 as long as they meet the 2021 eligibility criteria.

 

 

Go to www.salford.ac.uk/ref to check out all the latest REF guidance.

 

 

 

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Oct 23 2018

The University of Salford, alongside partner institutions Manchester Metropolitan University and the University of Manchester, are running over 30 events across Manchester and Salford as part of this year’s ESRC Festival of Social Science, 3-10 November 2018.

The Festival showcases Manchester social science research to a broad non-academic audience. This brings together an eclectic blend of activities designed to celebrate the social sciences, including discussions and debates, exhibitions, film screenings, walkabouts, family fun days, schools visits, workshops, and lots more.

Aims of the Festival

Through its Festival of Social Science, the ESRC aims to:

  • Encourage, support and create the opportunity for social science researchers to engage with non-academic audiences
  • Promote and increase awareness of the social sciences and ESRC’s research
  • Promote and increase awareness of the contributions the social sciences make to the wellbeing and the economy of the UK society
  • Enable the public to engage with social science research
  • Engage with teachers and young people and to raise their awareness of the social sciences.

 

Contributions from our researchers in the School of Health & Society:

/ Catherine Thompson & Bruno Fazenda

Using VR nature environments to improve performance and wellbeing

Saturday 3rd November 10am – 5pm / Manchester Museum

 

/ Philip Brown, Lisa Scullion & Tim Isherwood

The power of design: exploring the role of creative research dissemination

Monday 5th November 5pm – 8pm / New Adelphi Building, University of Salford campus

 

/ Jack Wilson, Anthea Innes, Andrew Clark & Anya Ahmed

University of Salford dementia and ageing hub showcase

Tuesday 6th November 2.30pm – 4.30pm / G05 The Old Fire Station, University of Salford campus

 

/ Cathy Ure, Penny Cook, Liz Burns, Margaret Coffey & Suzy Hargreaves

Putting communities in charge of alcohol: a health champion model

Tuesday 6th November Time 5.30pm – 7.00pm / The Friends Meeting House, Manchester

 

/ Donna Peach, Gabi Hesk, Deanna Edwards & Andrea Pepe

Developing community engagement with the social sciences

Wednesday 7th November 12pm-8pm / Atrium, Adelphi Building, University of Salford campus

 

/ Tina Patel & Laura Connelly

Divided communities? What the Brexit future means for people in Salford

Thursday 8th November 1pm – 3pm / G05, The Old Fire Station, University of Salford campus

 

/ Michaela Rogers

Ageing with healthy relationships: overcoming barriers to help-seeking when experiencing domestic abuse

Friday 9th November 2018 – INVITE ONLY / The Pankhurst Centre, Manchester

 

/ Ian Cummins & Toni Wood

True crime and punishment: exploring the influence of cultural representations of crime

Saturday 10th November 10am – 3.30pm / MediaCity UK

 

/ Dilla Davis & Annie Nichols with Manchester Malayalee Cultural Association (MMCA)

After a heart attack – role of cardiac rehabilitation

Saturday 10th November, 2pm – 4pm / Woodhouse Park Lifestyle Center

 

 

Why not come along and join in the activities?

Full details of all events across the week are available at:  www.esrcmanchesterfest.ac.uk.

Tweet your comments using the hashtags #esrcfestival and #McrESRCfest

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Sep 25 2018

We have recently won a €60,000 research contract with the European Commission to support the process of updating the European Code of Good Conduct for Microcredit Provision. This will involve facilitating a series of workshops and consulting with practitioners and stakeholders.

Dr. Pål Vik

Dr. Pål Vik

 

This has recently been announced on the website of Directorate-General for Employment.

Microfinance experts Prof. Karl Dayson and Dr. Pål Vik from the University of Salford will collaborate with the European microfinance sector.

 

Prof. Karl Dayson

The workshop will take place in Bilbao during the Microfinance Centre (MFC) – European Microfinance Network (EMN) Annual Conference on 3 October 2018, where representatives from microfinance institutions and microfinance experts from all over Europe will meet to discuss the areas of the Code that need an update.

 

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Sep 25 2018

SHUSUs Dr Lisa Scullion has become the University of Salford representative for the Greater Manchester Poverty Action (GMPA) Principal Partner Scheme. GMPA coordinates networks of organisations and individuals to collectively influence policy and practice to address poverty across Greater Manchester. GMPA are keen to ensure that the GM academic institutions have the opportunity to contribute to their network, and the Principal Partners Scheme provides a platform for disseminating the excellent anti-poverty work that is being undertaken by the University of Salford.

Lisa currently leads SHUSUs Work & Welfare theme, but is also a founder member and University lead of the Salford Anti-Poverty Taskforce. As a Principal Partner, Lisa will join the GMPA Advisory Group to help GMPA raise awareness of poverty across GM. Lisa said: “The University of Salford is proud to support the work of GMPA through the Principal Partners Scheme. We strongly believe in evidence based policy making, and want to ensure that our research is able to make a difference to the Greater Manchester anti-poverty agenda.”

For further information please visit:  http://www.gmpovertyaction.org/supporters-and-principal-partners/

 

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Sep 19 2018

As part of the REF readiness exercise in preparation for our REF submission in 2020, the Impact, Engagement and Environment Coordinator, in conjunction with the School Impact Coordinators, is holding a series of ‘Impact Case Study Action Plan’ meetings with identified case study leads.

Initial meetings have already started to take place and will continue throughout September and October. These will be followed up by mid-point review and year-end review meetings.

The aim of these meetings is to set a number of SMART objectives to guide our case study leads through the development of their case studies across the next two years in preparation for the final REF submission.

 

 

Key areas of focus include:

  • Creation of an ‘impact’ folder within Figshare in order to deposit all impact evidence collected to date and to maintain on an ongoing basis
  • Identification of research outputs to be included as ‘underpinning research’ for the impacts claimed in the case study
  • Completion of a stakeholder analysis to identify who has benefitted so far from the research, who to contact for testimonials, who to target to generate future impact and so on
  • Redrafting of impact case study information to date to reflect development of objectives and to shape the final submission

 

Further details on what constitutes an impact and how to measure ‘reach and significance’ of the impact have been released by REF in their draft panel guidance.

These details can be found here: https://www.ref.ac.uk/publications/

This list is not exhaustive, but provides a useful overview of the many different ways that research can generate an impact of some kind. Some food for thought!

 

Peer review of impact case studies

It is anticipated that both formal and informal internal peer reviews of impact case studies will be held in late 2018/early 2019, with another external peer review planned for Summer 2019.

Development of impact case studies through adherence to the ‘Impact Case Study Action Plan’ should help our case study leads to submit further drafts of their impact case studies for peer review to enable meaningful feedback to be provided and fed into future iterations of the action plan.

 

Why not take this opportunity to check out this and other impact resources available on the REF staff intranet: https://www.salford.ac.uk/ref

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Sep 06 2018

During the course of the summer, two members of Politics and Contemporary History were involved in teaching and lecturing at Nankai University, Tianjin, China. Dr Moritz Pieper presented a research paper at the Zhou Enlai School of Government, while Prof Alaric Searle delivered a four-week course on ‘Classic Works of British Historiography’ to undergraduates in the Faculty of History.

The title of Moritz’s talk was ‘Mapping Eurasia: Comparing the Competing Public Diplomacies of Russia’s “Greater Eurasia” and China’s “Belt and Road”’, which he delivered on 19 June. In his guest lecture, he presented a survey of the public diplomacies of China’s Belt and Road initiative and Russia’s vision of ‘Greater Eurasia’. Despite a level of economic competition between the operating modes of the economic land corridors envisioned under China’s ‘new Silk Road’ initiative and the Russian-dominated Eurasian Economic Union, Moritz argued, a convergence of interests between Russia and China on the global plane might temper the effects of regional rivalry.

 

Moritz Pieper delivering his paper at Nankai University

 

The presentation reflects Moritz’s current research project on the Belt and Road Initiative and its significance for Central Asia, for which he was awarded a Vice-Chancellor’s Early Career Research Scholarship. Students and staff alike engaged in a lively discussion about Central Asia, Trump, and IR afterwards, followed by some Peking duck sampling.

Alaric Searle’s course, which was delivered in the Faculty of History at Nankai during July, was part of his role as Distinguished Visiting Professor, which he has held since June 2016. Alaric noted: ‘It is always interesting to teach in China because students will often have a very different perspective on history. Some parts of British history are, not surprisingly, less well-known to Chinese students, so it is always interesting to try and explain unknown territory to them.’

Professor Searle is also involved in some research collaboration with Chinese historians. On these projects, he commented: ‘There are currently two collaborative projects I am working on with Chinese colleagues. One is nearing completion, while the other is still in its early stage. But, to coin a phrase … watch this space!’

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Sep 04 2018

Dr Brian Hall, Lecturer in Contemporary Military and International History, has been awarded the ‘Whitfield Prize for 2018’ for the best first book on British or Irish History by the Royal Historical Society. The award was made in London during this summer, Friday, 6 July, when Brian was presented with the prize by the Society’s President, Prof Margot Finn.

His book, Communications and British Operations on the Western Front, 1914-1918, published last year by Cambridge University Press, came out on top in a strong field of seven monographs which were shortlisted for the prize. The Whitfield Prize is awarded for books which are original works of scholarship, they must be the author’s first work, published in English, and by an author who received their doctoral degree from a British or Irish university. Brian’s book was chosen from a shortlist of works by authors who received their PhDs from, among other institutions, the universities of Newcastle, Cambridge, Oxford, Birmingham and Queen’s Belfast.

Dr Brian Hall Receives his Prize from Prof Margot Finn

 

According to the judges: “Communications and British Operations on the Western Front, 1914-1918 is a landmark of First World War scholarship. Drawing on an impressive range of primary sources, the book is a compelling piece of historical exposition. It draws attention to an aspect of warfare that is vitally important and yet curiously neglected in the existing literature – the extent to which the participants know what is going on, and the methods they use to try to find out. A wide range of historians will be obliged to take note of this book’s lessons.”

Alaric Searle, Research Lead for Politics and Contemporary History, and Professor of Modern European History in the School of Arts and Media, commented: “This award is a fantastic accolade for Brian. This prize has been awarded continuously since 1977 and no former PhD student from Salford, or member of staff, has ever won it before. Furthermore, it is has been rare for authors of books on twentieth-century history to win; and, as if this was not enough, this is the first time that a straight work of military history has ever won.

And he added: “Thus, this prize has seen several ‘firsts’ for Salford, not least of all as Brian’s colleague Dan Lomas was also short-listed for the prize. As Brian completed all his degrees in Salford (as did Dan), this is very much a ‘made-in-Salford’ story.”

The Whitfield Prize for History, together with the Gladstone Prize for the best book on a topic not primarily related to British History, are two of the most prestigious early career awards in Britain and Ireland, carrying particular weight due to the central role of the Royal Historical Society in representing the views of academic historians in the UK. The award of the Whitfield Prize to Brian also sees him win in the 150th Anniversary Year of the Society.

 

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Aug 31 2018

Poverty’s impact on Wellbeing – 6th August 2018

 

The work of SHUSU’s Dr Lisa Scullion and Dr Graeme Sherriff has featured on The Conversation in their article ‘Poverty’s Impact on Wellbeing is Hard to Ignore’ (http://theconversation.com/povertys-impact-on-well-being-is-hard-to-ignore-51378).

In it they discuss the wide-ranging ways in which poverty can impact upon wellbeing, including through the cold homes, housing insecurity, unhealthy air, poor food access, and work and welfare insecurity.

Their article was syndicated by Yahoo News (https://uk.news.yahoo.com/poverty-apos-impact-well-being-082046094.html?guccounter=1 ) and the World Economic Forum, (https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2018/08/reasons-why-poverty-and-lower-life-expectancy-go-hand-in-hand/).

 

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Aug 21 2018

Pavel Prokopic, a filmmaker and Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) North West Consortium funded PhD candidate in the School of Arts and Media, is presenting his films at leading media arts centre, FACT, in Liverpool, from 21 to 23 August.

Pavel has been on placement at FACT for the past six months, where he has been developing his practice-based research in ‘affective cinema’.

Rather than focusing on story and character development as many films do, affective cinema instead aims to create moments of strong feeling, through alternative approaches to cinematography and the directing of performers. As Pavel says, affective cinema ‘does not aim to tell a story’, rather it explores ‘the beauty of images and unpredictability of reality’, through ‘the infinite palette of cinema’.

Pavel’s supervisor and co-director of postgraduate research in the School of Arts and Media, Dr Joanne Scott, commented: “It’s great that Pavel has taken full advantage of the opportunities for placement offered by the North West Consortium, through forging this link with FACT. It also demonstrates that the innovative, creative research that he and other postgraduate researchers are doing in the school is of interest to our leading cultural venues.”

Ten of Pavel’s short films will be presented at the venue, as part of an experimental video installation:

For more info click here

Still from one of Pavel’s films

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