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The 12 winners of the inaugural Vice-Chancellor’s Awards for Public Engagement with Research were announced today by the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Louise Richardson, in a ceremony at Merton College.

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The Awards recognise excellence in Public Engagement with Research across three categories: Projects (either for Collaboration, Consultation or Communication purposes); Early Career Researchers; and Building Capacity.

 

We want to create a climate in which we can embed public engagement even more deeply into our research practices…Our aim is to ensure that Oxford acquires a reputation for engaging the public that equals our reputation for research. I encourage you to take inspiration from the inaugural winners of the University’s Public Engagement Awards and reflect on opportunities to engage the public with your own research. - Vice-Chancellor

The winners from the Medical Sciences Division were as follows:

Professor Trisha Greenhalgh, Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, for her project Using co-design principles to inform the design of assisted living technologies for older people with complex needs

Professor Hannah Smithson, Department of Experimental Psychology for her project The Ordered Universe: Engaging with Medieval and Modern Science through the Radical Interdisciplinarity

Dr Matthew Snape, Oxford Vaccine Group, Department of Paediatrics for his project ‘Pikin to Pikin Tok': communicating with children in Sierra Leone about Ebola vaccines

In the Early Career Researcher Category the winners were Dr Chrystalina Antoniades, Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences, and Dr Elizabeth Tunbridge, Department of Psychiatry.

 

Professor Alastair Buchan, Dean of Medicine and Head of the Medical Sciences Division commented: “I am delighted that five of our researchers has been recognised in the inaugural Vice-Chancellor’s Awards for Public Engagement with Research. They’ve all shown creative ways to engage with new audiences across a board range of research topics. It is truly inspiring and I’m sure will encourage others to seek out innovative and exciting ways to co-create value for our society and economy outside of academia – something we all have a responsibility to do.”

Further details on each of the winners is available in a short booklet (pdf).

The Awards form a fitting finale to a busy year of Public Engagement with Research activities across the University, which have seen the appointment of the University’s Academic Champion for Public Engagement, Professor Sarah Whatmore, the first Senior Facilitator and Co-ordinator for Public Engagement, Dr Lesley Paterson, and Medical Sciences Division first Public Engagement Co-ordinator, Naomi Gibson. In addition, the University’s Research Committee last month signed-off a Public Engagement with Research Plan.