First PRISM network in person conference

Wednesday 29 November 2023 10:00-16:00 GMT, Henry Royce Institute, Oxford Road Manchester M13 9PL

Come and join your fellow PRISMs in person for the first time, for a day of focused professional development, exchange of best practice, consensus-building and reading the tea leaves to find out how the role is developing.

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Morning session: PRISM core skills and career progression

Donna Swann and colleagues from UCL will present the PRISM job descriptions they developed at UCL, including: core skills at each grade, training and certifications, the institutional process for approval, how these JDs have worked so far in practice, next steps. As a group, we will brainstorm the selection of core skills, how to get funding for training, financial implications of job description details, how to get involved in promoting the development of PRISM job descriptions at your organisation, how to find allies in senior/central management for your role or for PRISMs as a group, what has worked and what hasn’t.

Afternoon session: The evolving role of PRISMs in the UK’s RD&I system

A speaker from one of the UK’s 4 research funders (TBC) on how they see the continuing evolution of how PRISM roles are funded, recognised and supported. As a group, we will explore: funding modes and their implications; formal and informal outputs and recognition; career progression and support; how PRISM conditions differ between employers, funders, councils and disciplines; what different stakeholders value in a PRISM; what permeability means for PRISMs; working towards REF2028.

If you can get support from your grant or employer to attend, please pursue these funding options. If these are unavailable, we hope to have a small number of hardship bursaries available, please indicate in your registration that you’ll need one. We’ll be in touch.

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Past events

How should the contribution of PRISMs be assessed in REF2028?

23 August 2023

REF2028 is beginning to take shape. In some promising steps, the 4 UK funding bodies have decided to move further away from the assessment of individuals, and increase the weighting for “people, culture and environment”, which will be assessed via a questionnaire. They are asking for feedback on their initial decisions via a consultation. We met to assess the impact of the decisions they have taken so far on PRISMs.

The Technician Commitment: What can PRISMs learn from this?

21 June 2023

Dr Simon Breeden was instrumental in developing the Technician Commitment, which ensures visibility, recognition, career development and sustainability for technical skills and roles in higher education. Simon joined us to share the story of the Technician's Commitment and the Institute, including how it came about, what were the breakthrough moments, lessons learnt and how funding was secured. 

Academic Communication Problems: Helping PRISMs communicate research

24 May 2023

Communicating research can be a thorny issue, as you often have different stakeholders with different levels of interest, knowledge and motivation. Getting these groups to all communicate well is tricky. This workshop looked at some of the major issues that cause things to go wrong and provides thoughts and techniques to help keep everything on track.
Led by Duncan Yellowlees 

Impact & Engagement for PRISMs

29 March 2023
Measuring impact is a way to show that something is being achieved. Measuring research impact is quantifying the change or benefit in the real world due to such activities. This session will look at how we measure and assess research impact and how PRISMs can contribute to this process through activities such as identifying relevant quantifiable impact, providing advice on materials to strengthen impact, helping to develop impact case studies, sharing good practice and materials relating to impact & engagement.
Led by Dr Eve Cosgrave, Deputy Head of Faculty Research, University of Newcastle.

CDT knowledge exchange workshops

January/February 2023

A 3-session series of knowledge exchange meetings dedicated to best practice sharing among (aspiring) managers of EPSRC Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs).

  1. Training / cohort building (23 January 2023)
  2. Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity / CDT culture (6 February 2023)
  3. Responsible Innovation / industry engagement & PGR career development (27 February 2023)
FAQ page on PRISMs in the CDT call

Writing a Business Case

23 January 2023
PRISM members have expressed an interest to learn more about constructing business cases. This session covered structure and language used in these documents, as well as tips and tricks for pitching your ideas. We invited people who want to learn about business case writing, and also people with experience in this area to join and share their experiences and best practice.
Led by Dr Rachel Sparks, PRISM committee member and Strategic Project Manager at Newcastle University.

PRISMs & the EPSRC CDT call 2022/23 - Knowledge exchange among (aspiring) Doctoral Training Centre Managers 

23rd November 2022
We hosted a session dedicated to best practice sharing and bid development discussions among CDT managers (and those who aim to become one) for the imminent CDT call. 
Led by Dr Anja Roeding (University of Exeter) and Dr Susie Douglas (University of Bath), PRISM committee members

Showcase of PRISM champion work

5 October 2022
How to go from 0 to effective senior management engagement and be a trailblazer for the PRISM initiative at your home institution.
Speakers: Debra Fearnshaw (Nottingham), Fleur Hughes (York), and Chloe Turner (Bath).

PRISMs & event management

May/June 2022
A PRISM's day job will likely include 'event management' in some form or other - from consortium meetings to conference organisation and effective networking events for our key stakeholders. In this workshop series, we facilitated best practice exchange from an overarching snapshot of the community experience on event management, to more in-depth knowledge sharing on selected event types. 


Last edited: 16 Aug 2023