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Watch: Public Engagement Fund showcase

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Research Data Scotland

11 Mar 2024

In 2023, Research Data Scotland (RDS) awarded over £56,000 to promote public engagement and involvement in data research in Scotland. In a recent showcase, the projects reflected on their work to date.

Hosted by RDS Public Engagement Manager, Katie Oldfield, the online showcase saw representatives from the eight projects present a summary of their work and their reflections on involving members of the public in discussions around data and research. The presentations were followed by a series of break-out sessions, giving attendees the opportunity to speak with the project teams directly and ask questions.

In the showcase, the project representatives considered the aims and methods of their work, the benefits and challenges of engaging people who may not usually have a voice in data science, and the future of the projects beyond the initial funding period.

Writing in a blog post in 2023, Katie Oldfield said: "When we launched our Public Engagement Fund in January 2023, we knew that we had a responsibility to encourage applications from a broad range of organisations that reach people from a wide range of backgrounds."

"Before we can start tackling the issues preventing marginalised communities from having a voice in data and research, we first need to understand these barriers."

Learn more about how the Public Engagement Fund supported diverse voices in this blog post: Diverse Voices, Better Outcomes.

Watch the showcase presentations:

About the Public Engagement Fund:

Launched in 2023, the RDS Public Engagement Fund was launched as a pilot to test interest and evaluate proposed projects. Originally capped at £40,000, RDS increased the total amount of funding available to support a wider range of top-quality projects, which reached various audiences across Scotland.

A total of £56,856 was awarded to projects that help widen participation in data science.

The aims of the Public Engagement Fund were to: 

  • Promote the public understanding of data research in Scotland
  • Provide balanced information on data research
  • Widen participation by involving and engaging members of the public who may not usually interact with science to take an interest and have a voice in data science
  • Achieve clear and measurable impact. 

Applications were received from organisations across Scotland, reaching a wide range of audiences. The funded projects are:

My Data (University of Dundee)

Data Linkage (University of Glasgow Schools Health and Wellbeing Improvement Research Network – SHINE)

How Fair is North-East Scotland? (Grampian Regional Equality Council)

Mental Health – Imagining Beyond (University of Edinburgh)

Digital Citizen Research Project (People Know How)

Data in Biological Research (University of Edinburgh)

Perinatal Mental Health (University of Glasgow)

Generation Scotland (University of Edinburgh)

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