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Public Engagement at Manchester

Being Human festival is now inviting applications for 2019!

Being Human festival is now inviting applications for 2019!

See: https://beinghumanfestival.org/apply/

The sixth annual Being Human festival will run 14-23 November 2019. Led by the School of Advanced Study, University of London in partnership with the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the British Academy, Being Human Is the UK’s only national festival of the humanities, and is one of the largest national platforms for public engagement with humanities research.

This year our festival theme is ‘Discoveries & Secrets’. This could involve anything from art historians uncovering painted-over masterpieces, archaeologists excavating ancient burial sites, historians making discoveries in archives, literary scholars discovering lost texts. More broadly it could include uncovering secret histories, or making new discoveries about seemingly familiar people, places, communities – the possibilities are endless. As ever the overarching aim of the festival is to take research in the humanities and share it in creative, fun and engaging ways with non-specialist audiences. We are really excited to see what you come up with this year!

There are three main pathways to getting involved:

  1. ‘Small Awards’: apply to Being Human for funding of up to £1,500 to enable activities.
  2. ‘Hub Awards’: apply for a larger grant of £2,000- £4,000 to coordinate multiple activities as a Festival Hub. (Only a small number of these awards are made every year)
  3. ‘Open Call’: organise an activity that does not require funding.

Further details, and answers to some Frequently Asked Questions are available on our website: https://beinghumanfestival.org/apply/

The deadline for applications for funding is 5pm Monday 8 April.

Many of you have been involved in the Being Human festival before and have helped the festival to grow. I hope that you’ll consider getting involved/taking part again in 2019.

Posted on behald of Dr Michael Eades, Manager and Curator – Being Human festival of the humanities
Twitter: #BeingHuman19

Could you host a Nuffield placement student?

Every year, The University of Manchester hosts sixth formers participating in the Nuffield Research Placement scheme. Last year we were proud, once again, to have hosted more students than any other institution in the UK. In 2017, many of these opportunities were offered to students who meet their widening participation criteria.

Offering a Nuffield Research Placement is a fantastic way of working with talented young people from local schools and sixth form colleges, who are interested in academic research in the future. (See more information about the scheme below).

We are now looking for Academic Staff or Early Career Researchers in any area of STEM or quantitative social sciences who would be willing to host a Nuffield Research Placement student this summer (July or August 2018).

If you are interested or would like more information please email – roz.webster@manchester.ac.uk

More information the scheme:

The Nuffield Research Placement scheme is a national scheme which provides sixth formers with the opportunity to work alongside professional scientists, technologists, engineers, mathematicians or quantitative social scientists. The students who take part carry out 4-week research placements over the summer, gaining independence, skills and experience and a much-valued insight into research as a career.

What do Nuffield Research Placement students 2017 say:

  • The placement given to me was relevant to what I want to study at university and so helped me make some decisions about my future. It was an amazing experience and I have come away after learning so many things.
  • It was an amazing and life changing experience that helped me grow as a student and as a person. It made me realise that this is what I want to do”.

For Project Providers, the scheme is a ready-made outreach activity supported locally throughout by the regional coordinator. It is a chance to inspire the next generation of researchers, while also making progress on your own research.

What do Nuffield Research Placement Project Providers 2017 say:

  • The Nuffield students are invariably bright and they make a positive hands-on contribution to our research and data analysis”.
  • It will encourage young people to pursue research careers, and will create greater understanding of the usefulness of this type of research.

We are now looking for Academic Staff or Early Career Researchers who can offer a 4-week placement to a local sixth former this summer (July / August 2018). Could you help? Do you have an ongoing project or a pilot project that a competent sixth former could help you with? Do you have a PhD student, post-doc or technician who would appreciate an extra pair of hands or benefit from the experience of supervising a student? Lab-based, field-based or computer-based projects are all suitable.

For further information please visit the Nuffield website:
General website: www.nuffieldfoundation.org/nuffield-research-placements
Student case studies: www.nuffieldfoundation.org/student-case-studies
Information for potential Project Providers: www.nuffieldfoundation.org/project-providers

Nuffield Research Placements are run by the Nuffield Foundation in partnership with the Wellcome Trust and Research Councils UK.

Bradford Science Festival – Finding the Surprising Science in the City!

The National Science and Media Museum and partners, invites visitors to come out and play, create and experiment with science at the Bradford Science Festival 2017.

An exciting new science festival designed to WOW families and young adults with exciting events, experiences and experiments. It’s all taking place in Bradford’s stunning City Park, in the Science and Media Museum plus other accessible but familiar venues.

The Bradford Science Festival is all about engaging families and young people with the science that is everywhere in exciting and inspiring ways and using the City of Bradford and Bradford people as inspiration for Finding the Surprising Science in the City! We will be turning familiar venues and attractions into an Interactive Science wonderland.

This year’s festival is a launch weekend which will grow over the coming years to become a major annual feature in the city’s cultural and events calendar. Launching with a provocative evening of STEM events aimed at our young adult audience and followed by 2 incredible days of playful and immersive experimentation and discovery, focussed at a family audience. The Festival will develop a unique alliance of partners and supporters, create and support new and innovative projects and engage families and young people who may have low science capital to be excited by the science that is everywhere in their city.

For a proposal form and further information, please contact Robin Dark (Partnerships and Learning Project Manager) robin.dark@scienceandmediamuseum.org.uk by 14th April 2017.

Funding opportunity – Being Human festival 2017

I am delighted to announce that Being Human, the UK’s only national festival of the humanities, will be returning for a fourth year between 17-25 November 2017.

Many of you will know already that Being Human is run by the School of Advanced Study, University of London, in partnership with the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the British Academy. It provides as a national platform to share research in the humanities in fun and engaging ways with non-academic audiences. Our festival theme this year is ‘Lost and Found’.

As always, we are offering a number of grants to support public engagement activities across the UK. You can apply for a ‘Small Award’, a ‘Hub Award’, or apply to take part with an event that does not require funding from the festival. Please take a look at our full call for applications for details: www.beinghumanfestival.org/apply.

Last year’s programme was an incredible display of humanities fun (also featuring lots of events in collaboration with scientists, artists, social scientists). You can take a look at the programme here. There are also now a number of case-studies on the website which should be useful if you are thinking of applying.

Need further inspiration? Take a look through our gallery from 2016 events here: https://beinghumanfestival.org/image-gallery/

The deadline for funded applications is 5pm 10 April.

Posted on behalf of Dr Michael Eades, Curator – Being Human festival of the humanities

BBC Primary Science Campaign – an opportunity for researchers to get involved

BBC Learning is launching a major campaign aimed at engaging upper Key Stage 2/Second level pupils (ages 9-11) with investigative science.

The exciting and innovative campaign will revolve around scientific enquiry and helping children associate science with the world around them. Schools will take part in a series of investigations over the course of the academic year 2016/2017 which will result in a mass data collection from classes across the UK. Results and data will be sent to science researchers at a number of UK universities and also uploaded to the BBC campaign website to enable children to explore a larger data set and compare their findings with those in different areas of the country.

The BBC Primary Science Campaign team are now in the process of developing the investigations for Phase 2 of the campaign and want to hear from researchers with an interest in simple but large-scale data collection from potentially huge numbers of the 9-11 age-group and their daily lives.

The investigations should focus on one of the following 6 areas:

  • Animals including Humans
  • Living Things and their Habitats
  • Electricity
  • Light
  • Evolution and inheritance
  • Properties and changes of Materials

All investigations should encourage scientific enquiry and where ever possible encourage child centred learning.

Full details including timetable for submissions can be found in the attached brief – BBC LEARNING PRIMARY SCIENCE PHASE 2 BRIEF (pdf)

If you have any questions about opportunity – get in touch with Jo Inglis at the BBC (jo.inglis@bbc.co.uk).

Any questions from those interested in the brief itself should be directed to the contact details in the attached brief – BBC LEARNING PRIMARY SCIENCE PHASE 2 BRIEF (pdf)

The Big Bang Fair 2017 – Call for applications

The Big Bang UK Young Scientists & Engineers Fair (the UK’s largest celebration of STEM for young people) is looking for activity providers, science communicators, companies, education institutions and show organisers to play their part in next year’s Fair at the NEC in Birmingham, 15-18 March 2017.

See: http://www.thebigbangfair.co.uk/

Submit your application before Tuesday 6 September to benefit from the launch marketing.

There are many ways to get involved, from interactive stands and workshops to theatre shows and busking. We have options and packages to suit all forms of science and engineering communication, including funding for sole traders.

  • 75% of activity providers and 80% of sponsors stated that The Big Bang Fair is better than most or better than all other events in the skills space, with 22% stating it was similar to others.
  • 98% of activity providers at The Big Bang Fair 2016 stated they would like to return in 2017.

Please go to www.thebigbangfair.co.uk/activities to apply or contact activities@thebigbangfair.co.uk for more information.

Recruitment Open for Widening Participation fellows for 2016/17 (Paid Opportunity)

Are you passionate about your subject area? Would you like the opportunity to work with local school children? Then the Widening Participation Fellow programme might be for you!

The Student Recruitment and Widening Participation Team is currently recruiting 1st & 2nd year PhD students for the position of Widening Participation Fellows. These positions support the University’s widening participation activities with a range of learners from primary through to sixth formers. There are a number of posts available in each Faculty.

Hours and Pay: The period of employment is usually from October – July (10 months). Fellows are paid at a rate of £12.56 per hour. Payment is monthly: e.g. £125.60 / month for 10 months when working 100 hours in total. Potential applicants interested in fewer hours should speak with the contact person for their area given in the attached roles and responsibilities document.

How to apply: Further details of the positions, and reasons to get involved and how to apply can be found in the WPF Role & Responsibilities 2016 (pdf) . Interested applicants need to send a completed WP Award Holder Application Form (doc) to the relevant Faculty Officer by Friday 26 August 2016.

For more information about the University’s widening participation work please visit:

Emma Lewis, UG Recruitment and Widening Participation Officer (Academic Enrichment STEM)