The Researcher-Led Initiative Fund

Do you have an idea for a project or event that could support your development as well as the development of others? The University recognises the importance of researchers having a choice in how they develop their transferable skills and the Researcher-Led Initiative Fund supports this.imagesgggg

So what is it?

The Researcher-Led Initiative Fund is available for specific projects/activities/events initiated by University of Edinburgh research students or research staff, for the benefit of groups of researchers at a School, research unit or research group level. The aim of the fund is to allow researchers themselves to have a greater input into the ways in which they are supported and developed, giving them the opportunity to think more creatively and proactively. The maximum total amount available to any one submission is £3,000 though many of the funded projects will be for amounts much lower than this.

The fund has many benefits, it can create the opportunity for interdisciplinary work; allow the development of ideas and projects, with the potential for wider public engagement; promote and encourage student and staff interaction; help build and engage research communities and networks; and allow potential research collaborations, that wouldn’t necessarily happen otherwise. Feedback from previous applications highlighted the positive impact of being able to develop something from start to finish and how the skills acquired could be applied in their current and future work.

The initiatives must be in keeping with the researcher development agenda of professional and career development however this can take many forms. Previous funded initiatives include: writing groups/retreats; the establishment and/or promotion of postgrad and research staff societies; public communication events; conferences; seminar series; and much more. A short overview of previous successful projects is available from our website.

The fund has 2 rounds each year (June / December) with the next round closing at 5pm on 1st December 2015.

For further information visit:

Presenting Made Easy Workshops

Due to high demand, we have added additional dates for the ‘Presenting Made Easy’ Workshops, details below:

Presenting Made Easy – Presentation Techniques

The course is designed to equip participants with skills and techniques to develop and improve presentations for a variety of audiences. The content of the course addresses specific needs identified by the participants through their completed pre-questionnaires.

Topics covered includes:

  • Confident and engaging deliveryimagesll
  • Dealing with stage-fright (controlling nerves)
  • Body language
  • Structure
  • Coping with Q and A
  • Enjoy Presenting

We aim to dispel the fear many people feel when being faced with speaking in public.

Tuesday 12th January 2016

Wednesday 13th January 2016

Monday 14th March 2016

Tuesday 15th March 2016

Presenting Made Easy – Delivering Presentations

This course is an optional follow on from the Presentations Made Easy – Presentations Techniques course. This half day course gives participants the opportunity to deliver a presentation.  Participants will present a prepared 5 min(max) talk on subject of their own choice or give an overview of their subject preferably using visual aids. They will then receive positive and encouraging feedback.

Monday 18th January 2016

Monday 21st March 2016

More information and booking can be found here

Research, Researchers and Media – A Hands On Approach to Communicating Your Research

Are you interested in finding out how to effectively communicate your research to the media?

We are running a workshop on the 18th – 20th February 2016 entitled ‘Research, Researchers and Media – A Hands On Approach to Communicating Your Research’

Course description:

The red light comes on and you’re live on air to millions of listeners. That’s the experience we replicate on this immersive three-day course in broadcast production. For that added touch of reality, we install you in one of the state of the art studios at the BBC’s Pacific Quay Glasgow headquarters.

You also explore the newsgathering process, producing video and radio reports for the evening news. There will be nowhere to hide as you work in groups filming, scripting and editing to tight deadlines.

And, from fairy tales to Star Wars, what makes a great story? In a workshop on narrative, we will uncover the essence of compelling storytelling and how to apply it to your own research.k6789970

Whether in the humanities, the arts or sciences, communicating your research matters. In this workshop we explore how to formulate your messages in ways that are relevant, fresh and engaging for diverse non-specialist audiences. This is not a straight media training course. We aim to go deeper than that by critiquing the processes by which ideas pass from academia to the living room. We cast you as the journalists, programme-makers and exhibition designers, bringing you face to face with the practises and pitfalls of the mass media.

There is a strong emphasis on group work, requiring an open mind and a willingness to get stuck in. There is a significant distance-learning element to the course three weeks before you arrive. Think carefully before signing up to this workshop. You will be required to complete around five hours worth of pre-planning online. This will be in a group structure meaning that it will not be possible to opt out of the course once the pre-workshop tuition is underway in February.

The course leader is Gareth Mitchell of Imperial College London and BBC Radio.

 More information and booking here