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Academic Champion for Public and Policy Engagement

The Medical Sciences Division (MSD) wishes to appoint an Academic Champion for Public and Policy Engagement.

The MSD is committed to ensuring that there is a strong, continuous two-way conversation between our researchers and those outside The University who could make use of our research, benefit from our research, or influence our research for the better.

Public and Community Engagement enriches our research and ensures that our work is informed by the rich and expert input of those with lived experience. PCER ensures that our work is visible to our neighbours and ensures that we are accountable to the people whose taxes help fund our research.

Policy Engagement increases opportunities for our research to make a difference. There is now wide-spread acceptance amongst policy makers that their decisions should be informed by the best available evidence and expertise. This can only happen if experts within The University are visible and available to those making these decisions. We need academic staff to reach out across a cultural divide and allow decision makers to take their expertise on board in a way that fits the policy makers’ needs.

The Academic Champion for Public and Policy Engagement will strive to make sure that our engagement has breadth and depth and that everyone in the Division is supported to be as actively engaged as possible. The champion will play a leading role across the division to ensure that our work confirms to best practice.

What’s in it for you?

  • You will play a key role in shaping the landscape and support for PCER and policy engagement within the Division and across the University.
  • This is an excellent professional development opportunity. You will build your profile, develop influence and skills in negotiation, engagement, decision-making, and strategy development and implementation.
  • You will network and influence across the wider University.
  • This role comes with a small budget to initiate activity and to buy out teaching or administrative duties where appropriate and in agreement with your Department.

Personal specification

  • A knowledge and understanding of PCER, including University and national policies.
  • An appreciation of the policy landscape and the support available through University structures such as OPEN.
  • Established researcher with first-class leadership and negotiation skills, and experience of PCER and/or policy engagement work.
  • Demonstrable passion for engaging groups outside academia with research.
  • Keen to proactively support progress embedding PCER / Policy engagement within research culture and practice.
  • Dynamic with ability to influence.

Roles and responsibilities

  • Supports the Associate Head of Division (Research) to maximise the impact the impact of research in MSD specifically through PCER and Policy engagement.
  • Provides academic leadership for PCER and policy engagement and works with the Public and Policy Engagement with Research Facilitator to develop a strategy for increasing the breadth and depth of both activities.
  • Working with Division’s Public and Policy Engagement with Research Facilitator to:
  • Identify priorities, barriers and opportunities;
  • Contribute insights to development of implementation plans;
  • Proactively seek out opportunities to liaise with senior academics to support the case for PCER and policy engagement when appropriate;
  • Act as a role model to support embedding of PCER and policy engagement within their own department and across the division.
  • Represent MSD on the University’s PCER Advisory Board and the OPEN Steering Group.
  • Provide academic mentorship to research leaders on the value of PCER and the opportunities for policy engagement; supporting their understanding of policies and practice.
  • Proactively strengthen and make more visible the Division’s commitment to PCER and policy engagement.
  • Lead or Coordinate multi-department funding bids where appropriate.
  • Act as a reviewer for bids to internal PCER or policy engagement funds.

How to apply

Please send an e-mail with your CV and outlining your interest in this role. In no more than one side of A4 please address:

  • What is your understanding of the value and purpose of PCER and /or policy engagement, and how does it interact with and differ from other engagement agendas, e.g., outreach?
  • What experience and involvement do you have of participating in strategic groups and decision making at the University, in your department, or in voluntary roles?
  • Please provide a brief summary of the PCER and/or policy engagement with research you have undertaken.

Send your email to martin.christlieb@medsci.ox.ac.uk by 28 January 2023. Informal enquiries may also be addressed to Martin.

Key dates

  • Application Deadline: 28 January 2023
  • Notification of shortlist: 30 January 2023
  • Online Interviews: Early February 2023
  • Appointment: Mid February 2023

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