The University of Southampton welcomes this opportunity to work with the NCCPE and to build shared understanding across our institution about public engagement with research (PER).
Southampton has a long tradition of engagement, and some of our best projects were represented at the 2014 Engage competition with one category winner and two category finalists.
Our Catalyst Seed Fund (CSF) project is led by our Pro-VC (Research and Enterprise) Professor Judith Petts and supported by staff in the Public Engagement with Research unit (PERu). Professor Petts chairs our Engaged University Steering Group and this group will work with the PERu and the wider Public Engagement Network to accelerate culture change related to PER activity.
The Public Engagement Network has been open to all staff and students since 2011 and provides a diverse base of knowledge and expertise.
As part of the CSF project we will expanding hte PERu to bring in expertise to develop additional high-quality platforms for engagement. A particular opportunity is currently afforded by the major infrastructure development of new cultural spaces in the City which will come to timely completion this academic year. The University is a lead partner in this work; our CSF project seeks to build on these relationships in order to maximise the potential for research engagement in these new locations.
You can visit our public engagement with research website here.