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Welcome to the Support Services Conference 2007. We would appreciate your comments regarding the conference and any ideas for suture events so please help.

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Presentation on theme: "Welcome to the Support Services Conference 2007. We would appreciate your comments regarding the conference and any ideas for suture events so please help."— Presentation transcript:

1 Welcome to the Support Services Conference 2007. We would appreciate your comments regarding the conference and any ideas for suture events so please help us by returning the feedback forms.

2 Dr David Langley, Director of RED Key Trends in Research and Development Support Services Conference, 26 th June 2007

3 3 Context Research and Enterprise (along with teaching) is at the heart of what the University of Bristol does It contributes to the University's international reputation, it informs and stimulates teaching and it contributes to the economy of the South West, the UK and globally We are recognised as one of the most research intensive Universities in the UK, even though we are one of the smallest in size We are also a global player undertaking research that is world-leading or internationally excellent

4 4 But, what do we mean by Research ?

5 5 What is research ? – the Fracsati definition Research is original investigation undertaken in order to gain knowledge and understanding; It includes scholarship, invention and generation of new ideas, images, performances, artefacts and design and the use of existing knowledge to produce new materials, devices, products and processes… It excludes routine testing or analysis

6 6 What Research do we do and how good are we at doing it? We have an extremely diverse portfolio across many disciplines, Faculties and Depts and have approx 2000 funded research projects. In the last independent assessment of research quality (RAE 2001), 78 per cent of Bristol University's departments were judged to be world class or internationally excellent The next RAE is scheduled for 2008…

7 7 Research Funding Almost all research done at the University is funded by external organisations such as Govts, Research Councils, Charities, Industry, NGO, EU, philanthropists and through peer reviewed competition Various factors affect the success of a research proposal e.g. quality and deliverability, scope, experience of the researcher, political climate, external priorities and drivers, strategies set by funding organisations

8 8 Research Funding In recent years the Government has substantially increased spending on research, and science budget has than doubled since 1997, rising to £3.4 billion The strength of the economy impacts on the ability of charities and industry to fund research The expectation is that research will continue to do well under a Gordon Brown premiership

9 9 So, what does the research portfolio at the University look like?

10 10 Research Income 2005/06 - University of Bristol, £76m

11 11 What are the big issues that we need to be aware of ?

12 12 Big issues: analysis and intelligence, influence Planning and prioritisation of research activities can be informed by intelligence –Horizon scanning – knowing about opportunities and understanding the thinking of policy makers, increased networking –Anticipating the grand challenges –Being involved in setting agenda nationally & internationally (rather than responding to it!) –Understanding what is going on in key policy areas (e.g. China & India) –Knowing what our competitors are doing

13 13 Big issues - Collaboration Encouraging collaboration across disciplines and with other Universities, industry and other countries (e.g. Worldwide Universities Network) Being prepared to lead bigger, bolder programmes of research with clearly articulated deliverables e.g. Gates, EU Being slick at relationship management with research funders in key sectors; awareness that funders are now starting to work together and want to be involved throughout a project

14 14 But…. Collaboration and size adds complexity and researchers need good pre-award and post-award advice, support and management This increasingly requires specialist skills such as bid support, research governance & ethics, project management, EU, relationship management, contracting, enterprise Efficient systems are essential Ideally, we work in partnership – we are more than a clerical function but must demonstrate our professionalism…

15 15 Big issues – Research themes Focus on and support known areas of strength and international excellence; identify what Bristol uniquely has to offer Research themes are a tool aimed at encouraging research development, particularly multidisciplinary, and communicating this externally They can assist Deans in allocation of resources Compare our research themes with external horizon scans – be proactive and dynamic

16 16 Examples of University Research Themes Cardiovascular Science Neuroscience Nanoscience and Quantum Information Animal Welfare and Behaviour Cell Biology Vision Human Rights Global Change Advanced Composites Dynamics Engineering Medieval Cultures Colonialism Performativity, Place, Space Security and Governance Gender

17 17 Big issues – Impact of Research Measurement of impact as a key indicator increasingly popular (economic, political, social, etc.) –Publications, citations –Novel compounds, devices, patents, licences, spin-outs –Consultancy, policy development, press coverage, conferences, training, outreach to communities, benefits to society These will become increasingly important

18 18 Other issues Research requires investment in –Big, expensive buildings (e.g. Science) –Expensive equipment (e.g. High Performance Computing –Information resources (e.g. Libraries, etc) –World class academics –Developing academics What support and where/how provided ?

19 19 And I havent even mentioned –Enterprise and Knowledge Exchange –Support for early stage researchers –Success rates and how we improve them –Full economic costs and sustainability issues –Cultural change –And the numerous roles RED undertakes….. www.bristol.ac.uk/research/

20 20 And now some actual researchers… Professor Nishan Canagarajah (Dept of Electrical and Electronic Engineering) Dr Michael Naughton (School of Law) Dr Mark Horton (Dept of Archaeology and Anthropology)

21 Welcome to the Support Services Conference 2007. We would appreciate your comments regarding the conference and any ideas for suture events so please help us by returning the feedback forms.


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