Posts tagged: research

UPRISE, ELS and SHUSU Exploring Local & Regional Approaches to Ecology & Flooding

Irwell Flooding

Photo of a flooded Irwell by Dr Luke Blazejewski

Researchers from UPRISE are collaborating with colleagues from the School of Environment and Life Sciences, Research and Innovation and SHUSU (Sustainable Housing & Urban Studies Unit) on a HEIF-funded project to explore local and regional approaches to ecology and flooding.  This project will involve engaging with organisations, agencies and communities in the Salford and wider Manchester region to understand how ecological principles can be applied to the issues surrounding floods, and the wider functioning of a city.  This diverse partnership draws from a pool of expertise, and demonstrates precisely the interdisciplinary approach required to look at 21st century urban issues – keeping in spirit with the ICZ strategy of the University of Salford.

Led by the Dean of School, Prof. Hisham Elkadi, the project will run until the end of July.  By strengthening partnerships with UPRISE across the university and beyond, this important area of study will provide a basis for a larger and longer term body of work which will evolve our thinking on cities and how they function, Dean of School, Prof. Hisham Elkadi says “Climate change results in more severe and more frequent adversial weather conditions.  Flood-control infrastructures in our contemporary cities are not reliable mitigation defenses in the face of climate change uncertainties. The aim of the project is to build-in ecological resilience measures to mitigate against flooding”

A series of workshops and interviews are being organised by UPRISE as part of the project.  UPRISE Research Fellow, Dr. Nick Davies, described the co-creation approach of the project: ‘The workshops will provide a platform for organisations involved in various sectors concerned with flood resilience to interact, and be involved in designing and sharpening the key research focus of this project.’


New easy-to-use Ethics website launches

Ethics website front pageThe Research Centres Support Team in the Research & Enterprise Division are pleased to announced the launch of the new University Ethics Website.

Over the last few months, the team have been working to develop a new, centralised website and to update all the application forms, so that the whole process of getting ethics approval is much more user-friendly.

Designed with feedback from Ethics Panel members and Professional Services and Academic colleagues across the University, the new University Ethics website provides an easy-to-use single source for all Ethics-related forms, processes and procedures.

On the new site you will be able to find:

  • Application Forms for Staff, Postgraduate Research and Taught Students
  • Guidance on applying for ethics approval
  • Codes of Ethics for all research disciplines
  • FAQs
  • Contact details for the Ethics Research Centres staff and Panel Chairs

Links from all the Research Centre websites have been updated to redirect to the new website, making the transition a seamless process.

To share your thoughts and let us have any suggestions to make the site even better, contact Nathalie Audren Howarth in the Research Centres Support Team on ext. 55278


University launches construction research centre at industry summit

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Professor Arif taking part in a panel discussion, chaired by Prof McDermot

Research and innovation may play an even greater role in supporting industry post Brexit, a leading professor has told the Construction Summit North.

Launching the Centre for Built Environment, Sustainability and Transformation (BEST) at Emirates Old Trafford, Professor Mohammed Arif told 300 industry delegates that the need for research and information was “potentially more fertile” because of the uncertainty over the EU exit.

And the Centre Director invited delegates from the architecture, housing and construction sectors to engage with researchers who were “experienced and industry focused”.

Construction Summit North, organised by the Greater Manchester Chambers of Commerce,  is the largest event of its kind outside London and sponsored by the University of Salford, which chaired a series of sessions.

Read more…..


UPRISE Research Fellow discusses urban poverty reduction in Uganda

In the first of a series of blogs about our research on urban poverty in Uganda, Sophie King talks about the project’s inclusive research process and methodology:river

In January 2016,  a group of us came together to begin a process of co-producing knowledge on how governments can better support the improvement of living standards in Uganda’s informal settlements.  Specifically, we are looking at the ways in which national and local government, usually in partnership with transnational actors, have gone about the delivery of water and sanitation projects in two divisions of Kampala and in two secondary towns. In the secondary towns, we are considering the outcomes achieved through the Transforming Settlements of the Urban Poor in Uganda (TSUPU) programme.

In an attempt to combine expertise in research methodology, urban planning, and social movement practice, our research partnership brings together a Western female academic, a Ugandan male academic, a team of NGO professionals from ACTogether Uganda, and leaders from the National Slum Dwellers Federation of Uganda (NSDFU). Building on existing ESID research in India, our overarching research question has been:‘What shapes state vision, commitment, and capacity to reduce urban poverty in Ugandan towns and cities?’

Through a co-productive process, we hope to produce a richer understanding of ESID’s core research questions than a more extractive research strategy might have generated. In a sometimes
clumsy, necessarily adaptive, and occasionally systematic way, we are trying to move forward in a research team that reflects the composition of our overall partnership. Mistakes … we’ve
made a few. But we’re also excited and energised at the power of research to be transformative when it works this way. It is not easy, and with so many constraints on getting these kinds of projects financed and off the ground, we are lucky to have this opportunity.

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Research project looks at green infrastructure and its impact on ageing populations

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A collaborative research project looks into health benefits of green infrastructure

The University of Salford is partnering with the University of Manchester and Manchester Metropolitan University on a £700,000 research project that looks into the benefits and values of green infrastructure for an ageing population.

Green infrastructure (GI), a term used in reference to green and blue spaces (including areas of grass, woodland and parks, and rivers, canals and ponds) has already been shown to have direct and indirect influences on human health and wellbeing. However access to GI and the associated health and wellbeing benefits is not shared equally amongst the population. Additionally, as many people aged 65 and over become susceptible to environmental stressors (such as noise, pollution and extremes of weather), this age group in particular may also be the least likely to benefit from GI.

With that in mind, the ‘Green Infrastructure and the Health and Wellbeing Influences on an Ageing Population’ project, funded under the Valuing Nature Programme, an interdisciplinary research programme run by three research councils (ESRC, AHRC and NERC), will look into the relative benefits and stressors of GI and how GI should be valued in the context of the health and wellbeing of older people. The research will use a broad interpretation of health and wellbeing and will consider issues such as the influence of historical, heritage and wildlife value alongside the monetary value of preventing ill-health. Read more…..


Constructing the Science of Social Interaction using Virtual Reality

From 12th-13th July 2016 the second Virtual Social Interaction workshop will be held at MediaCity, Manchester.  Co-organised by University of Salford, Goldsmiths University of London and University College London, the workshop will showcase new methods and theories in social interaction, with talks from 8 international speakers and c. 20 Posters.

Attracting an audience of international researchers from the fields of Psychology, Cognitive Neuroscience Computer Science and Digital Technologies the workshop will highlight work towards a scientific understanding of how people interact.

Early Bird registration ends on 30th May and entry provides access to talks and posters, full catering on both days and an evening wine and poster reception. Register here: http://shop.salford.ac.uk/browse/extra_info.asp?compid=1&modid=1&catid=270&prodvarid=245

Read more…..


Local universities join forces to fight dementia

dementia

Photo credit: Chris Foster (University of Manchester)

Manchester, Salford and Manchester Metropolitan Universities are teaming up in a new initiative to combat dementia in the region and beyond.

To mark Dementia Awareness Week (May 15-21), leading researchers from the three institutions met at the Whitworth Gallery to open a series of collaborations around a range of dementia issues – from biology to social care.

Natalie Yates-Bolton, Director of the Dementia Institute at the University of Salford, said she believed that Manchester would be a model for the rest of the UK in dementia care. Read more…..


Salford Missing from Home Project

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Kate Parkinson

There is a recognition that any young person who is missing from home is potentially at risk of serious harm or exploitation. Young people who are in the formal care of the LA are recognised as being at particularly increased risk. This has been a significant feature of the widely reported cases of grooming and child sexual exploitation (CSE). Kate Parkinson (University of Salford) has been involved in the initial evaluation of a new approach to tackling these issues. GMP (Salford Division) officers are working closely with Salford Childrens’ Services staff to ensure that there is a clearer focus on the welfare of young people and engage with them more effectively. The pilot has helped to reduce the number of missing from home episodes and there has also been an improvement in the working and organisational relationships between GMP and partner agencies in this field.

Kate presented the initial findings from this research at the College of Policing on the 11th May 2016 to police officers on a strategic leadership course, who are on track to be the chief inspectors of the future.

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No kidding – prosthetics expert helps man live as goat

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Thomas Thwaites with the goats in the Swiss Alps

A Salford University prosthetics expert enabled a man to follow his dream of living as a goat. 

Conceptual designer Thomas Thwaites was so intrigued by the animals he devised an experiment to spend several days studying their behaviour up close by living as part of a herd on the Swiss Alps last year.

Thomas’s research, carried out thanks to an arts award from the Wellcome Trust, saw him transform himself into one the animals, and even attempt to communicate with them.

And to make his experience all the more realistic, he enlisted the help of Dr Glyn Heath from the University’s School of Health Sciences, who he asked to help make him a set of special goat-like artificial limbs enabling him to roam around on all fours and closely mimic the animals’ movements.

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‘Seeing from the South’ an exchange with South-African shelter activists

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Alinah Mofokeng

“We are poor, but we are not hopeless. We know what we are doing”. 

This is Alinah Mofokeng, one of three activists from the South African alliance of community organizations and support NGOs affiliated to Shack / Slum Dwellers International (SDI) who came to visit Manchester last month. The three came to explain their approaches and to exchange knowledge with local organisations through a combination of visits around Manchester and Salford, and a half-day workshop drawing together activists from around the country.

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