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Research Culture Seed Fund Projects

Eight projects were funded following the first call of the Research Culture Seed Fund.

In November 2021, we launched the first call for a new Research Culture Seed Fund. The Fund aims to pump-prime innovative approaches to enhancing the environment in which research takes place at the University, and act as a ‘test bed’ for new ideas which could serve as best practice models to be rolled out in other parts of the University.

It turned out to be a very competitive call, with 50 applications submitted from across the three faculties, from both individuals and groups, and applicants included research fellows, readers, senior lecturers, and non-academic staff.

While all of the applications proposed worthwhile activities, eight were successful, based on the overall budget available, the extent to which they aligned with the priorities set out in the Research Culture Action Plan, the extent to which the proposed activities would address the research culture issues identified, and whether it was likely the proposed activities could be adapted for other parts of the University.

The successful projects include:

  • A Team drawn together from staff in the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, Graduate School, Postdoctoral Development Centre, and Fellowship Academy will put together #ECRday2022, an inclusive and accessible online programme of talks exploring opportunities after PhDs, for those in the arts, humanities and social sciences, capturing the diversity of academia, and benefiting graduate students looking to secure roles in a competitive marketplace
  • A number of staff, involved in the African Scholars Association of Ireland (AfSAI), will lead a research retreat to enable African researchers, from different disciplines and academic stages across the University, to work on research projects, engage with counterparts from other HEIs, share knowledge, engage socially, and create a sustainable supportive culture within the institution
  • School of Psychology Open Science Workgroup will work with Research Policy, Open Research Team, and Research Governance around the creation and launch of Open Access Guidelines, to promote Open Science practices that emphasise transparency and integrity, initially within the school but with potential to rollout across the University
  • Students and Staff from the School of Nursing and Midwifery are developing ‘PhDs Always Write’ (‘PAW!’), an innovative PGR student-led and co-designed programme which aims to strengthen peer support and understanding among international and home doctoral students, enhance academic writing skills, and build confidence in undertaking research in a collaborative environment
  • The New Methods for New Media network, including staff from AHSS and Information Services, will work together to create a Digital Scholarship Hub (DSH), a website and a community of scholars from different disciplines and career stages, who are working with digital data and/or methods, with the aim of sharing resources, research methods, ethical practices and contacts, and developing a culture of digital scholarship
  • Animal Welfare and Ethical Review Body (AWERB) Culture of Care Subgroup will pilot an annual workshop and develop animal technician training, aimed at improving communication and greater transparency in the Queen’s animal research community, to ultimately enhance the Culture of Care
  • We are also supporting a number of projects, focused around improving the research culture for those in pedagogical research:
    • Lecturers in Education in the School of Biological Sciences will hold a Pedagogical Research Methods “Swap Shop”, an event aimed at providing short, accessible, peer-led training and knowledge sharing in pedagogical research methods to Lecturers in Education across the University
    • Lecturers in Education in the School of Natural and Built Environment will launch a new Scholarship of Teaching and Learning cluster within the School, and host an interdisciplinary conference and workshop day event, to support a collegiate community of staff involved in pedagogical scholarship and publication

These projects will work to deliver their plans over the coming months and will share their experiences via a range of mediums, including blogs, videos and events, in order to share best practice across the institution and wider sector.