STFC launches Interact 2017 Evaluation Report in partnership with UoB

University of Birmingham, together with STFC, Institute of Physics and SEPnet are proud to launch the evaluation report from Interact 2017. Interact 2017 was a symposium whose aim was to cultivate a community of engagement practitioners within the physical sciences who develop high quality STEM engagement and encourage a culture of strategic and reflective practice.

The symposium was a success with over 120 physical scientists from across the UK attending and sharing best practice. The symposium is also measuring its impact on these scientists through a yearlong evaluation process, the baseline of which can be found in the report.

In addition to this, the report showcases the rich landscape for Outreach and Public Engagement that currently exists in the physical sciences across the UK and sets good measures for its continued development.

The symposium also featured plenary speakers Prof Alice Roberts (University of Birmingham), and SEPnet’s Prof Jim Al Khalili (University of Surrey) talking about their careers as engaged researchers and science communicators.

30 parallel sessions were on offer at Interact 2017 and most of these were delivered by physicists. This shows how the Interact partnership is promoting best practice across physics departments in the UK.

If you missed the day and would like to get a feel for it, check out his video from the Institute of Physics which features SEPnet’s Director of Outreach and Public Engagement, Dr Dominic Galliano.

For more information, feel free to contact the UoB Interact team members: Dr Caroline Gillett & Professor Cristina Lazzeroni by dropping us an email:



Social Media Toolkit for Healthcare

More and more people are using the internet to discover and share information about their health. In fact, more than 40% said information found via social media affects how they deal with their health.

58% of the UK adult population use social networking sites and more and more are using them for information and advice in all areas of their life – including their health. It is therefore vital that healthcare organisations find their place on social media.

Skills For Health have developed a new social media toolkit for healthcare which may be of interest to those of you working in a health related field.

Check it out here: skillsforhealth – socialtoolkit

Sense About Science – Public Engagement: A practical guide

Sense about Science have launched Public Engagement: a practical guidefunded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). It is aimed at researchers to help and encourage them to involve the public in working out how to communicate findings — from the earliest stages of projects, and on the most challenging of subjects.

 Sense about Science, have worked with researchers on many of the most sensitive subjects – some fraught with misunderstanding – to improve the communication of their research findings. They only undertake such partnerships where there are high stakes for the public and communication is difficult. Communicating the survival statistics of children’s heart surgery at different treatment centres in 2016 was among the toughest of these, with potentially major consequences for all involved. 

 The guide uses this experience as a case study throughout. Their public engagement team worked with NIHR-funded health researchers to present research information in a way that is shaped from the outset by people who will use it. 

We hope you find the guide useful and if so please consider sharing it with your networks. You can also follow the conversation on Twitter via their hashtag #PublicLed  

Call For Participants – a new recruitment platform for research

Call For Participants is a simple advertising platform focused on bringing opportunities for taking part in academic research to the general public. Today researchers from over 300 universities have used Call For Participants to advertise their surveys, interviews and other research studies. We also provide support and guidance on how to advertise research and communicate to the public.

The University of Birmingham now has its own dedicated notice board on Call For Participants so staff, students and the public can visit a single webpage to discover the research happening today:

To find out more about Call For Participants please contact Matt: or visit one of the links below:

Advertise a research study:

Researcher support:

Digital Storytelling: Filmmaking for the Web (Free MOOC course)

This course may be useful for those who would like to utilize film-making in their public engagement? Find out more HERE

The University of Birmingham, the BBC Academy and Creative Skillset have joined forces to create this four-week, free online course.

INVOLVE publish a social media guide and jargon buster

INVOLVE has published new guidance on the use of social media to actively involve people in research. Visit:

They have also developed a jargon buster or glossary of words containing the definitions of some of the terms commonly used in public involvement in research.  These definitions were developed by working in consultation with a panel of researchers and a panel of people who use services.  You can access the jargon buster at