By Fiona Millar – Research Funding Officer

Scottish Universities Insight Institute Knowledge Exchange Workshop

I attended the first of the revamped SUII Knowledge Exchange workshops in Glasgow on Wednesday 7th September to learn more about the next call for proposals and discuss potential projects.

suii-calls-for-proposals-2016Charlie and Nicola kicked off the workshop with an introduction to SUII and the programme.  In case you are unfamiliar, SUII promotes collaboration and engagement between researchers and the wider society, supporting programmes of knowledge exchange in which academics, policy makers, industry and wider communities are brought together to gain and share insights into issues that affect them.  Programmes of knowledge exchange typically last 6 months and must involve a lead partner from at least two of the partner institutions (University of Stirling is one) and co-design and co-creation is encouraged with the stakeholders for which the issue is aimed at.  While SUII funding doesn’t cover any staff time, costs for participant travel, facilities, equipment and other costs that support knowledge exchange are eligible, with the typical application budget being £15-20,000 (see the applicant guidance). After an introduction by SUII, we heard from Dr Matthew Smith on his project The Pinkie Resilience Project which explored well-being in young people. Dr Smith discussed the programme, its workshops and the impact that was generated as a result of the programme.
Then it was time to hear about the next call and the timeline for application. The next programme is centered on learning from other places, be that the physical place, practice or people – in essence the sharing of best practice. Expressions of interest are due 21st October (full application 18th Nov) and you are encouraged to contact Nicola Duncan to discuss your programme.

Then it was time to break into workshop groups and discuss collaboration, outputs and tracking impact. I was facilitating one of the groups and we discussed whether for knowledge exchange programmes like SUII existing networks should be used or the opportunity should be used to establish new networks. We also discussed how one would attract new networks and engage with relevant stakeholders to establish a project team. One of the group members worked for a charity and mentioned how difficult it was, in her experience, to engage with and breakdown barriers to contact universities.

If you are interested in applying for a knowledge exchange programme funded by SUII, please contact Nicola Duncan to discuss your idea. Nicola can also support in facilitating any connections you may require.