Colleagues within the Institute for Informatics and Digital Innovation at the School of Computing of Edinburgh Napier University kicked off the new year at a one-day event on Friday 8th January at which they shared their latest research news.
The format of the day allowed for short presentations on work of the School’s five research centres (which together for the Institute for Informatics and Digital Innovation) by each director:
- Centre for Algorithms, Visualisation and Evolving Systems led by Professor Emma Hart
- Centre for Computing Education and Research led by Sally Smith
- Centre for Distributed Computing, Networks, and Security led by Professor Bill Buchanan
- Centre for Interaction Design led by Professor David Benyon
- Centre for Social Informatics led by Professor Hazel Hall
The slides that I prepared for my slot provide an update on activity within the Centre for Social Informatics since the start of the academic year 2015/16. These include:
- The appointment of three new members of academic staff
- Dr Louise Rasmussen’s departure following completion of her PhD
- The arrival of new ESRC-funded research student Lyndsey Jenkins
- A number of project completions, including the CILIP/ARA Workforce Mapping Project, DigiCC, and DREaM Again
- On-going projects and new work, such as InGSoc (funded by the AHRC) and dot.rural Portrait KE (funded by the EPSRC), and training for the UK Electronic Information Group (UKeiG)
- Project bids in preparation and currently at review
- Recent publication news (with an eye on REF2020)
- Recent research student successes including progress to PhD, journal and conference paper acceptances, and prizes
The contents of the slides also make reference to our plans for the remainder of the academic year 2015/16. As well as progressing on-going projects, we’ll be hosting visits from an number of international researchers, submitting further project proposals and papers, and participating in a range of events related to our research interests and expertise.
Following the presentations on each of the research centres Professor Ben Paechter and Jamie Brogan shared news from the University’s Research and Innovation (RIO) office. Their updates encompassed all types of research that we undertake within the School, including contract and commercial research projects such as continuing professional development activities.
The highlight of the day for many, however, was the 75 minute slot allocated for one minute madness presentations. In total 68 staff each submitted a single slide for this session. The presenters spoke to their slides in quick succession, drawing attention to their main research activities, while the audience members listened and watched the 60 second timers run down to zero. I managed to squeeze the following 186 scripted words into my minute, using the tag cloud from this web site as illustration:
I’m Hazel Hall, Director of the Centre for Social Informatics. To introduce you to my research interests I am giving you a guided tour of my blog tag cloud. My main research domain is Information Science, with a focus on knowledge management.
Much of my recent research has been concerned with the practices of librarians and information scientists, such as Developing Research Excellence and Methods or DREaM project. DREaM was supported by the Library and Information Science Research Coalition, which I led between 2009 and 2012. The main grant, however, came from the AHRC.
I also hold grants – and work with – two other research councils.I’m heavily involved with ESRC funded doctorates. This is through the doctoral training centre of the Scottish Graduate School of Social Science. I am also chair of the EPSRC Digital Economy Programme Advisory Board. Through this work I serve on a number of other committees. For example, I am on the steering group for the Digital Catapult Researcher in Residence Programme.
I blog about my research at hazelhall.org. I encourage you to find out more about my work there.
The one minute madness session was very entertaining, and particularly suited to an audience that has such as wide range of research interests. The timing of the session allowed for conversations about the research presented to be initiated and continued at a deeper level amongst those who had identified common and shared interests over lunch. The full set of one minute madness slides available from the IIDI web site gives a good overview of the wide range of research undertaken by colleagues within the School of Computing at Edinburgh Napier University.
The rest of the day was spent in small group activities during which we engaged in research speed dating and discussed how to develop our research activities further within the School. (Conversations also continued early evening amongst those who opted for an ‘off-campus meeting’ in one of the nearby bars.)
All in all this was a great way to start the new year. Thanks are due to all participants, and especially to Professor Emma Hart, Professor Ben Paechter and research student Andreas Steyven who planned all the activities and chaired the sessions on the day itself.