One month, three reports

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November was an unusually busy month for Research Consulting, with three reports from recent projects publicly available, coverage in social media and a face to face launch event:

  • current practices and barriers in the area of research reproducibility, with a focus on the publication and dissemination stage;
  • how the Research Excellence Framework and affects interdisciplinary research; and
  • the under-recognised role that technical staff play in the delivery of knowledge exchange in universities.

You can find out more details about each of these reports below.

The Art of Publishing Reproducible Research Outputs: Supporting emerging practices through cultural and technological innovation for Knowledge Exchange

Knowledge Exchange (KE) commissioned this report to explore current practices and barriers in the area of research reproducibility, with a focus on the publication and dissemination stage. The findings seek to compare and inspire strategies, policies, and operational practice and share lessons learned from a wide range of stakeholder groups.

In this report, views of research funding organisations, research performing organisations, learned societies, researchers, academic publishers and infrastructure and service providers from around the world were captured. The Knowledge Exchange Open Scholarship Framework – a model to address specific aspects within open science – was applied to investigate reproducible publication practices. This informed the design and delivery of all components of the research, including a comprehensive literature review and a series of interviews and focus groups with a total of 51 contributors. Interview and focus group findings were transcribed and qualitative coded for thematic analysis.

Find out more here: https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.5521077

The Future of Interdisciplinary Research beyond REF 2021 for The Physiological Society

This report was commissioned by The Physiological Society to provide greater understanding of how the Research Excellence Framework (REF) and its associated processes affect interdisciplinary research (IDR). It recognises a research landscape where the ability to work effectively in IDR teams is a growing requirement for many research funders, including industry.

The position and assessment of IDR within research assessment and evaluation is an area of longstanding focus and is manifest in all aspects of the research ecosystem, including access to grant funding, publications, and researcher career development.

This report identifies current views and builds on a growing body of evidence relating to interdisciplinary research focused on the approach to national research assessment. This report provides a contributing input to the ‘Future Research Assessment Programme’ which will investigate approaches to the evaluation of UK higher education research.

Find out more here: https://www.physoc.org/policy/research-landscape-and-funding/interdisciplinary-research/

The role of technicians in KE for Midlands Innovation TALENT

This report was commissioned by the Midlands Innovation TALENT project to look at the role technical staff play in the delivery of knowledge exchange (KE) in universities. Technical staff are a group whose expertise, knowledge and capability makes the delivery of world leading research and teaching possible in universities, and their contribution is significant.

The report brings together views from a range of stakeholders, including technicians and Directors of Technical Services, who participated in this work.

The report is set in the context of two national policy developments, firstly the launch and uptake of the Technician Commitment has catalysed substantial work focused on the development and recognition of technical staff contributions in higher education. More recently, the KE Concordat which aims to support reflection and development of practices in KE addressing capacity building, reward and recognition and continuous improvement.

Find out more here: https://www.mitalent.ac.uk/Knowledge-Exchange

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