Transformative place-based research theme grows network

A growing network of social sciences, arts and humanities researchers within Midlands Innovation are developing novel place-based ideas to find solutions to issues many communities are currently facing.

The range of interdisciplinary research projects address a wide range of topics including ways in which local authorities can better support people through the energy poverty crisis, creating more green jobs and developing arts-led cognitive interventions to improve people’s health and wellbeing.

More early and mid-career researchers will be exploring new ideas as the Inclusive Transformation research theme continues to develop with a new expression of interest for funding being launched, upcoming webinars and workshops in 2023.

The group now has two new co-chairs who will be helping to progress place-based research collaborations within the partnership.

Sue Clayton, Deputy Director for Midlands Innovation said: “I want to thank Professor Simon Green from Aston University for acting as chair for the Inclusive Transformation research theme and helping to establish this transformative research agenda.

“I’m confident Anicée and David, our new co-chairs will further build on the work that’s been done and grow our network of researchers who are interested in collaborating on place-based, interdisciplinary research ideas.”

Professor Anicée Van Engeland, Co-Chair from Cranfield University said there were a lot of exciting opportunities to develop research bids that could make a tangible difference to communities.

She explained: “The Inclusive Transformation research theme is now looking to expand its network with more interdisciplinary, cross-institutional project ideas. The benefit of this emerging research area is the opportunities that social sciences expertise brings to delivering place-based research.

“Connecting social scientists with broader research disciplines creates valuable insight to inform the design process, help understand behaviours and, in turn, facilitate innovative research.”

Professor David Amigoni, Co-Chair from Keele University also commented: “Combining the collective expertise of academics from social sciences, arts and humanities can help to influence research in a way that can shape impact and outcomes. I’m excited to see how the research ideas develop as cohort three launches.”

Midlands Innovation has successfully launched two calls for academic colleagues to develop projects under the Inclusive Transformation research theme. The group of interdisciplinary researchers have been granted seedcorn funding to further develop ideas and apply for larger funding bids to carry forward their research.

The third funding call is now open and expressions of interest for 2023-24 have been invited. The deadline for submission is 2 February 2023. Contact Sue Clayton for further details sue.clayton@midlandsinnovation.org.uk 

A webinar is taking place for researchers in the Midlands Innovation partnership on Monday 14 November 2022, between 1pm – 2pm. If you wish to attend this event, please register via this Eventbrite link.

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