Professor James Wilsdon - After Brexit, UKRI if you want to: a social scientist's field guide to the new research landscape
Wednesday 7th March 2018 6.00 - 7.00pm
Keele Hall - The Salvin Room
Refreshments will be available from 5.30pm onwards.
The latest in a series of 'Grand Challenges' lectures from the Institute of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
We’re about to embark on the biggest shake-up in the organisation of UK research for a generation. On 1 April 2018, implementation of the Higher Education and Research Bill will see the seven Research Councils, Innovate UK and the research arm of HEFCE drawn into the warm embrace of Sir Mark Walport's new mega-funder, UKRI (UK Research and Innovation). Multi-billion pound strategic funds - for global challenges and industrial strategy - are the main source of extra investment in the funding system, forcing universities to think creatively about the projects and cross-disciplinary teams they can assemble. The Research Excellence Framework has been revamped. And all of these reforms are taking place against the backdrop of the compound uncertainties of Brexit.
The external drivers are pressing, the research system is changing, but the need for robust social science, novel methodologies and interdisciplinary analysis of complex problems has never been greater. How can the social sciences prepare for the road that lies ahead? And what opportunities - as well as bumps - may lie around the corner? Drawing on his experience at the heart of UK research policy, James Wilsdon will offer a field guide to the shifting contours of the UK research landscape.
James Wilsdon is Professor of Research Policy and Director of Impact and Engagement in the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Sheffield. From 2013-2017, he was Chair of the UK's Campaign for Social Science. He also chaired the independent review of the role of metrics in the management of the UK’s research system, which published its final report 'The Metric Tide' in 2015. Previously, James worked as Professor of Science and Democracy at University of Sussex and Director of Science Policy at the Royal Society. He is an editor of the Guardian's 'Political Science' blog on science and research policy. In 2015, he was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences.
This lecture is free and all are welcome to attend.