Peninsula Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care supports high-quality applied health research focused on the needs of patients.

Exeter to become catalyst for engaging research

The University of Exeter has been awarded £300,000 to become a centre of excellence for public engagement in research.

The grant from Research Councils UK (RCUK) will ensure Exeter’s research addresses the most pressing issues facing people today: from patients to business leaders.

By becoming one of eight University Catalysts for Public Engagement, Exeter will build on a series of excellent initiatives already underway and ensure public engagement becomes an embedded part of its research culture.

The grant will support a three-year programme to establish new structures and processes across the University and develop the ‘Exeter Catalyst’.

University of Exeter Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Nick Talbot said: “The Exeter Catalyst will enable us to become a leading UK institution for public engagement. We are committed to carrying out world-class research that addresses some of the most important issues facing people today: from understanding the impacts of climate change to researching new treatments for diabetes and improving literacy in schools. This new funding will enable us to strengthen our links with a whole range of people, from patients to local business leaders, to ensure our research continues to benefit them.”

Professor John Womersley, RCUK Champion for Public Engagement with Research said: “RCUK believe that engaging with the public should be something all researchers do. This funding will help HEIs build on their current activities and create a culture where public engagement with research is fully embedded within that institution. I congratulate those researchers awarded funding and look forward to their successes serving as a model for other HEIs to adopt in future.” 

Examples of public engagement work at Exeter:

  • Peninsula Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care, one of nine CLAHRCs across England, is a partnership  between the University of Exeter, Plymouth University and the NHS in the South West. It supports high-quality applied health research focused on the needs of patients, and the translation of research evidence into practice in the NHS.
  • The Environment and Sustainability Institute on the University’s Cornwall Campus, which is working with businesses in Cornwall, the Isles of Scilly and beyond to translate research and expertise into innovative business practices, products and services in order to respond to the challenges of environmental change
  • Research from the Centre for Medical History and Classics, which has led to the development of new sex education teaching practices, being trialled at 40 secondary schools in Devon and Cornwall.

Date: 5 April 2012