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Newsletter 7: Options choices, our next event and more on the costing tool

16 May 2018

We look at the results of your feedback from May’s event, introduce our next open house event on Wednesday 13 June, and invite you to attend Research Costing Tool product demonstrations.


Thought Exchange

The Thought Exchange survey generated some feedback from the research community which were not specifically related to research. We’ll report on these in Newsletter 8.


Options choices

In Newsletter 6, we reported that the engagement with the wider community has drawn to a close. Work on options analysis is underway. This work is being carried by various stakeholders, the workstreams project boards, the RLP programme board, and consultation with the University’s Senior Leadership Team.

Attendees of our open house event on Thursday 3 May were involved in weighing in on the options for investment as we go ahead. The attendees had the chance to ‘spend’ £15m on various baskets of options, by spending virtual money in the shape of plastic coins each representing £1m! Here you can see the team counting the virtual money to indicate where they’d prioritise investment:

Below, you can see the various investment options and the distribution of priorities of those investments, from our open house event attendees:

As can be seen, one option was very high on our participants’ priority list – to define and build Manchester’s Research Support Professions. Although this is one of the least expensive options, it will require a change in culture and University processes.

In addition to spending ‘virtual money’, participants were asked to volunteer to work with the RLP team as we develop the business cases for the individual work packages in the new year, funding approval pending.

Again, the option of building the Research Support Profession garnered the most suggestions and volunteers.

We encourage you to look at the presentation materials from the RLP open Forum on the 3rd May, and to get in touch with us if you’d like to engage with the programme as we go forward, in any of the areas above.


Open house event – Wednesday 13 June

As we near end of the scoping phase of the programme, we’ve gathered a great deal of information from surveys, workshops and other events with our research community.

Find out more about our proposals for the direction of the programme at our next open house event between 12.30pm and 1.30pm on Wednesday 13 June in room 1.34, Simon Building.

As before, anyone involved in research at the University is welcome to attend:


Research Costing Tool – Product demonstrations

The Research Costing Tool project is sponsored by the Directorate of Finance and reports into the RLP to ensure the University’s requirements for research costing can be considered as part of the broader strategies for the programme.

In the Research Lifecycle Newsletter on 2 May, we explained the project team are in the process of gathering requirements to replace our current research costing tool pFACT.

The team are inviting suppliers to demonstrate their research costing tool products in order to help understand and prioritise what the University may want out of a costing tool. Demonstrations are being scheduled and will be listed on the Events Page of the RLP website as and when confirmed, so please do check back. We are expecting to arrange around five demonstrations.

If you’d like to attend a demonstration, please email your name, role and the demonstration name(s) to ResearchCostingTool@manchester.ac.uk .

Please note the demonstrations are a scoping exercise only. They do not form part of a procurement process.