Presentation on theme: "Funded by the UK Funding Councils, Research Councils UK and the Wellcome Trust BEACONS FOR PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT 2008-2011 The Beacons are Community University."— Presentation transcript:
Funded by the UK Funding Councils, Research Councils UK and the Wellcome Trust BEACONS FOR PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT The Beacons are Community University Engagement East (CUE East), Manchester, Newcastle, UCL, Cardiff and Edinburgh and there is a National Coordinating Centre at Bristol. Our task is to, create a culture within HEIs and research institutes and centres where public engagement is formalised and embedded as a valued and recognised activity for staff at all levels and for students (HEFCE 2006). Our focus is on the culture change and not on delivering more public and community engagement, though we are doing that too. CUE EAST EVALUATION Evaluation as an iterative process with continuous feedback loops City College Norwich Beacons Researcher
Funded by the UK Funding Councils, Research Councils UK and the Wellcome Trust Measuring institutional culture change in regard to public engagement Describing culture - a definition: A pattern of shared basic assumptions that the group learned as it solved its problems of external adaptation and internal integration, that has worked well enough to be considered valid and, therefore, to be taught to new members as the correct way you perceive, think, and feel in relation to those problems. (Schein, 2004: pp ) Culture change – implies an existing culture or view of academics and HEIs: Ivory tower Lonely scholar Research, research, research Measuring institutional culture – a mixed method approach Face to face interviews and online survey Challenges
Funded by the UK Funding Councils, Research Councils UK and the Wellcome Trust What we did 55 semi-structured interviews with academic staff, mostly face to face Sample 1 - targeted individuals (n=24) Heads of Schools Associate Deans for Enterprise & Engagement Associate Deans for Research Pro Vice Chancellor Sample 2 – randomly selected academic staff by faculty and grade (n=31) Four faculties – Science, Social Science, Health, Arts & Humanities Four grade levels – Snr Academic, Academic, Snr Researcher, Researcher
Funded by the UK Funding Councils, Research Councils UK and the Wellcome Trust Key research question areas The meaning of public engagement Drivers of involvement Barriers to involvement Perceived importance Levels of involvement Institutional recognition, support and reward for public engagement Participants were also asked a series of questions about CUE East in order to help shape future implementation of the programme.
Funded by the UK Funding Councils, Research Councils UK and the Wellcome Trust Key findings Lack of a shared understanding of the term public engagement 84% of academic interviewed involved in public engagement Public engagement considered not as important as research and teaching A number of barriers to public engagement identified: Time Career progression Peer approval Research-led culture Lack of strategic support: Support is personal rather than organisational Very little recording took place Public engagement was not rewarded in any formal way