Blog posts

Monthly update from the Institute of Global Health Innovation

News

Could bird songs help boost engagement with hearing tests?

A new venture will explore the use of bird songs to encourage engagement with hearing tests. The idea was born out of a two-day workshop led by the NIHR Imperial Patient Safety Translational Research Centre, developed to stimulate innovative ideas that could help improve communication for adults with hearing loss.

Find out more – http://www.imperial.ac.uk/news/190086/could-bird-songs-help-boost-engagement/

Could a smartphone app make hospitals safer?

In a new study, Institute of Global Health Innovation (IGHI) scientists will begin evaluating whether the Streams app can help both patients and healthcare staff by making important medical information more readily available.

Find out more – http://www.imperial.ac.uk/news/190069/could-smartphone-make-hospitals-safer/

Running a hospital in a warzone (more…)

Monthly update from the Institute of Global Health Innovation

A roundup of news, events and blog posts

My one WISH this Christmas – ending the stigma around mental health

Institute of Global Health Innovation (IGHI) spoke to one of our scientific advisors, Mr Hutan Ashrafian, who shared his thoughts and expertise on mental health.

Professor Stephen Matlin reflects on the importance of addressing the health needs of the migrant and refugee community

Digital data: a double-edged sword for safer healthcare

Technology and digital security were key features of discussions at Sixth Annual Patient Translational Research Centre Symposium.

A new study from the Patient Safety Translational Research Centre highlights the most common types of fatal drug administration errors in hospitals.
 

Upcoming opportunities

 
IGHI’s Student Challenges Competition is open for applications. We’re looking for UK university students to submit their with novel ideas in global health for a chance to win up to £5000.

Postgraduate opportunity: student representative for Research Ethics Committee

Calling all postgrads!

Imperial College London would like to recruit a postgraduate student representative for the NEW Science, Engineering and Technology Research Ethics Committee (SETREC). SETREC will focus on non-health related projects and will run alongside the ICREC which previously had oversight for all health and non-health studies.

A key aim of the Committee is to enable Imperial to maintain the highest ethical standards in all research relating to human participants.

SETREC will convene monthly on the third Tuesday of each month at South Kensington Campus. If you are interested in joining the Committee, please send a short letter outlining relevant experience and suitability. Please include an up to date copy of your CV.

No experience necessary. Applications must be sent to Nooreen Shaikh at the Joint Research Compliance Office. Information on ICREC can be found on the website.

Closing Date: 28 February 2019

‘How to engage with policymakers’ support for Imperial researchers

How to engage with policymakers for Imperial researchers
The Public Affairs team is currently working on a new programme to support Imperial researchers connect with policymakers, including workshops with policymakers on specific themes, training, information and support to individual academics.

Seminars for Imperial researchers were introduced at the end of 2018 and will continue this year. These seminars aim to equip researchers with everything they need to initiate or continue their engagement with policy. The seminar will provide an introduction to policy-making and influencing as well as a practical guide on how to engage policymakers with research to achieve increased impact. It is suitable for all levels of experience and no preparation will be necessary.

The next dates are:

  • Thursday, 21 February: 13:45 – 16:00
  • Wednesday, 27 March: 9:45 – 12:00
  • Friday, 26 April: 13:45 – 16:00
  • Friday, 31 May: 13:45 – 16:00
  • Friday 28 June: 13:45 – 16:00

All seminars will take place in the Boardroom, Faculty Building, South Kensington Campus.

To register or if you have any questions, please email The Forum team: the.forum@imperial.ac.uk

We look forward to seeing you soon. 

Lisa Bungeroth
Public Affairs Manager

Need to work over the Christmas closure period?

The College closes at your usual finishing time on Friday 21 December and reopens on Wednesday 2 January. If you need to undertake any essential work between these times when the College is closed, the College Access to College Buildings Out of Hours Policy applies. Please see the policy for more information on what is considered to be essential work.

The policy requires you to obtain written permission from your Head of Department (or, for the Department of Medicine only, your Head of Division). There is a link within the Policy to the form that you need in order to obtain such permission.

Heads of Department/Division must be satisfied that appropriate lone working arrangements are made in line with the College’s Safe Management of Lone Working Code of Practice, and that wellbeing implications are considered prior to out of hours access being granted.

Security staff are likely to check whether such permission has been granted if you are working at these times.

 

GRANTfinder 4 Education – new provider for research funding information

The College no longer subscribes to Research Professional and has moved to a new provider for research funding information, called Idox GRANTfinder 4 Education, offering a searchable database of funding opportunities and the option to subscribe to alerts.

GRANTfinder 4 Education allows academic institutions in the UK to service all their funding search requirements in one place: GRANTfinder for wider projects such as capital investment and spin-offs, RESEARCHconnect for research projects and POLICYfinder to keep track of relevant policy to support funding applications. This resource offers the ability to search for up-to-date funding opportunities and share information across defined groups and the wider communities at Imperial College and to deliver these in a cost-effective manner.

How to use GRANTfinder 4 Education

Information regarding how you can access and effectively use GRANTfinder 4 Education can be found in the Research Office bulletin (12 Nov 2018) and the quick start guide for RESEARCHconnect.

There will be a training session will be on 12 December. Antony McKay from Idox will deliver the training and there will be 3 sessions, all in room SKEM 315. Registration is via Eventbrite. The second session of the day will be tailored for research managers and the other two sessions are open to all College staff. Please register for the session you would like to attend. If you are unable to attend these sessions there will be more scheduled for the early part of 2019. (more…)

Monthly update from the Institute of Global Health Innovation

IGHI Annual Lecture 2018
IGHI Annual Lecture 2018

A roundup of news, events and blog posts

Global Health Forum: Viral hepatitis

IGHI’s November Global Health Forum brought together experts to discuss the current challenges in tackling viral hepatitis.

Imperial College London’s Dr David Nabarro took to the floor at the Institute of Global Health Innovation’s (IGHI) annual lecture to address the pressing subject of sustainable development.

The World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH) 2018 united some 2,000 healthcare innovators, researchers and policy-makers to address the most pressing global healthcare challenges of today.
IGHI speaks to Professor Graham Cooke to discuss how viral hepatitis is affecting populations around the world and what’s being done to treat it.

 

ICT Customer Services Restructure – What does it mean for FoM?

ICT Customer Services is currently undergoing a restructure led by the Head of Customer Services, Leigh Davenport. The new model is designed to allow us to focus more on the operational relationships with the faculties by giving the faculties a dedicated resource who will be their day-to-day interface. Whilst we are focusing on the customer relationship we are also going to improve the efficiency of service delivery, making better use of the staff we have by pooling our resources and continue our trend of improving resolution times whilst driving down Service Level Agreement breaches. The changes are due to take place in a structured and phased way, over the next 6 to 8 weeks.

New roles and changes to teams

  • A new function has been created called the Customer Services Management team, headed by Dawn Beaumont. Customer Services Managers will own the operational relationship with customer departments and manage customer satisfaction within ICT. As well as leading the new team, Dawn will also be the Customer Service Manager with responsibility for Medicine.  Dawn has spent her entire career at Imperial providing IT support to Medicine, worked at all of the Medicine campuses and has for the last 15 years been the Faculty Support Manager responsible for the teams providing IT Support at the Medicine sites.
  • The ICT Digital Partners will still own the strategic relationships with the departments, initiating and guiding new projects and will work with the Customer Services Managers to champion the “voice of the customer” within ICT.
  • The Faculty Support team will report into a single Faculty Support Manager, Jamey Khan, who will oversee the services of resource teams providing deskside support in departments and via the ICT Service Desk in Central Library for South Kensington-based staff and existing local offices on remote campuses. This move should allow improved responsiveness of engineers to adapt to changing demands across the organisation.
  • Elmy Thompson, the current Site Manager for Hammersmith, Charing Cross and White City will be moving to take up the role of Departmental Operations Manager taking charge of the ICT’s Admin function. Dominic Spencer who currently covers St Mary’s, Chelsea and Brompton will have responsibility for managing deskside support teams across all the College’s remote campuses.

In terms of how things will work, for support requests and faults, please continue to submit as usual. Full details can be found via the ICT pages

Staff on clinical campuses will continue to have access to their local teams.

If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact Leigh Davenport, Head of Customer Services.

Opportunities from the Clinical Academic Training Office (CATO)

Researcher Development Course

This course, taught in two modules, provides an excellent grounding of the critical underpinning skills required to perform high-quality research.

  • Course dates: Module 1: 11 – 12 March 2019 / Module 2: 13 – 14 June 2019 at Imperial College London, South Kensington Campus
  • Target audience: designed specifically for healthcare professionals outside of medicine

Further Course information

There are a limited number of FREE bursary places available for Imperial College London staff in healthcare professions outside of medicine to cover the course fee. Contact the CATO Team for further bursary details.

 

CATO Masterclass

Revolutions in public health research and how to access UK Biobank data: An update for all Clinical Academics

  • Course date: The next Imperial CATO masterclass is on January 24 2019, 18:00hrs, at the Royal Marsden Hospital (Julian Bloom Lecture Theatre).
  • Course content: The focus will be on how clinical academics might use the increasing wealth of population and NHS data (including UK Biobank) in research studies, or work with epidemiologists and others in exploring research questions using their data and skills.
  • Target audience: This will be particular interest to those of you who are not public health researchers to learn about how you could potentially work with such academics, and learn what they are currently doing, and how to access data such as UK Biobank.
  • Speakers: this will include Dr Ioanna Tzoulaki, Reader in Epidemiology, who uses UK Biobank data to explore genetic associations of inflammatory biomarkers (amongst others).

Please complete the online form to book your place.

Update from the MRC London Institute of Medical Sciences (LMS)

Visualisation of new building. Image credit: Hawkins\Brown
Visualisation of new building. Image credit: Hawkins\Brown

New home for the LMS

In 2017 the Medical Research Council and Imperial College London announced a joint project to build a new home for the MRC London Institute of Medical Sciences (LMS) on the former Cyclotron site. The location of the LMS at the Hammersmith Hospital campus has supported the delivery of multidisciplinary research at the interface of medicine and basic science. The new building will bring the Institute together in a state-of-the-art collaborative research environment with specialist research facilities.

This month the project reached a major milestone with the submission of planning permission to the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham. The application will be live on the Council portal in a week’s time, with a planning decision expected in March 2019.

Alongside the development of the planning application, the procurement of the contractor for the project has begun. While the team await the planning decision the project has now moved into RIBA stage 4, the technical design stage. Our design team of Hawkins\BrownBuro Happold and Abell Nepp are continuing to work with the LMS and our project team to develop these plans over the coming months. (more…)

Faculty of Medicine’s new Attributes and Aspirations Module – what is it?

Dallas Alexandrou, project manager for the Attributes and Aspirations module explains this new module:

In parallel to the ongoing curriculum review, the Faculty of Medicine postgraduate team has identified the need to develop high-quality tools and activities to help our Master’s students take ownership of their professional futures and develop their graduate attributes beyond the mastery of their chosen discipline.

As a result, the proposed Attributes and Aspirations (AA) module has been approved by the College Pedagogy Transformation Committee and is currently being developed. It will use interactive pedagogical activities based on a blended, inclusive, innovative and active approach to supporting our students.

Critical to the development of the AA module is that it meets both students’ and employers’ needs. Research has been undertaken to identify the relevant topics and skills our students are keen to develop, together with the skills and attributes identified by employers as being critical graduate skills for current and future employment. Areas including effective career guidance, practice of selection processes and skills such as adaptability, communication, critical thinking, problem solving and effective team work have been identified as priorities.

Subject to the College’s standard approval mechanisms, a pilot delivery of the AA module will commence from Autumn Term 2019-20 in selected Faculty of Medicine MSc/MRes programmes. AA will be non-credit bearing and elective, with much of the delivery online to avoid interfering with students’ timetabled teaching and lab sessions.  Following evaluation of the pilot, there is an ambition to offer the module to students from all FoM postgraduate programmes and to students from Faculties across the College. (more…)

From the Vice Dean (Education): Supporting education in our Faculty

Martin Lupton
My appointment as Vice Dean (Education) was announced last month, and it is a great privilege to be asked to lead our community of creative and inspiring students and education staff. Since the Dean asked me to take on this role, I have been thinking about how I can best support those in the Faculty of Medicine involved in education.

We are in a time of great change and opportunity. As you know, we are currently involved in a comprehensive undergraduate and postgraduate curriculum review. We are also about to make a significant investment in our pedagogy and digital education capacity (initially funded through the Learning and Teaching Strategy). Furthermore, for the first time, there is a clear path to academic promotion based on a person’s scholarly and educational activity.

It is obvious that I cannot manage all this change alone. I propose two things: (more…)

Monthly update from the Institute of Global Health Innovation

Joe Biden at Imperial, October 2018

A roundup of news, events and blog posts

Joe Biden delivers inaugural cancer research lecture at Imperial

IGHI was honoured to welcome the 47th Vice President of the United States Joe Biden, who delivered the inaugural lecture of the Imperial Cancer Research UK (CRUK) Centre.

Global Health Forum: Cancer technologies 

IGHI’s Global Health Forum returned on 11 October for the new academic year tackling cancer technologies.

IGHI Podcast: The Progress of Cancer Technologies

Ahead of October’s Global Health Forum, IGHI spoke to Abellona U to discuss how far we’ve come in cancer technologies, their translatability to lower and middle income countries and her research on hepatocellular carcinoma.

A Marginal Call in Breast Cancer

Mr Daniel Leff looks at the major challenge in margin problems when it comes to breast-conserving surgery for Breast Cancer Awareness month. (more…)

Opportunities from the Clinical Academic Training Office (CATO)

Wellcome Trust/NIHR Imperial BRC/ICCIS clinical research fellowships 2019

‘4i’ programme, Immunity, Inflammation, Infection and Informatics

  • Applications are invited from exceptional medical graduates who demonstrate a commitment to a research career and aspire to become the next generation of clinical academic leaders to join our prestigious PhD Fellowship Programmes.  Successful candidates will be selected on the basis of academic potential to reach the highest standards of scientific research, regardless of clinical specialty.
  • The Fellowships will be full-time and fixed term for three years. The funding covers clinical salary, PhD registration fees at the UK/EU rate, College fees, associated project costs and general training costs.

(more…)

Focus on fundraising

The Faculty of Medicine fundraising team has seen change and success since its inception but our mission remains the same, to raise as much philanthropic funding for Medicine as possible. We have recently grown to a team of four: Angela Bowen (Director of Development), Amy Propsting (Head of Development), Emily Pratt (Development Officer) and Ellen Becker (Executive Assistant to the Director of Development). As time has gone on, it has become clear that the more people we have going out and speaking to alumni and friends of the College, the more donations we have secured and our totals have increased year upon year. (more…)

The Active Classroom: Do less work, have more fun

The MBBS curriculum review coincides with a college-wide review of all taught programmes – MBBS, BSc, MSc, MRes. The college is dedicating resources to a learning and teaching strategy, with buy-out of academics’ time to plan their reviews, grants for new teaching initiatives, a promise to reward good teachers in promotion rounds, a seminar series on approaches to teaching, curriculum review workshops, and a heightened status for the Education Development Unit as a centre for research into teaching and learning. There are ambitious plans to encourage the diffusion of learning technologies throughout our programmes.  For a research-based university, there is a surprising level of chatter about teaching, together with chances to influence (and be influenced by) the renewed emphasis on education.  If you don’t know what I’m talking about, see the Learning and Teaching Strategy. (more…)

Data Protection (GDPR) in the Faculty of Medicine – practical information and Q and A sessions

From October to December 2018, the Faculty of Medicine will be running information and Q&A sessions for staff to accompany the launch of the Faculty’s new Codes of Practice for information governance and for handling health and social care research data.

These new codes of practice will provide practical guidance, processes and advice on how to comply with current key data legislation (GDPR) and to implement the College’s associated policies within the Faculty of Medicine setting.

Dates of drop-in sessions

Drop in between 10:00 – 16:00

Thursday, 22 November 2018 – St Mary’s Campus,  Medical School, Hynds Computer room

Friday, 30 November 2018 – South Kensington, SAF G28

Monday, 3 December 2018 – Hammersmith Campus, Hammersmith Library computer training room

Friday, 7 December 2018 – South Kensington, SAF G28

Monday, 10 December 2018 – South Kensington, SAF G28

Please see further information on the Information Governance SharePoint site.  (more…)

Medicine and open access

It is international Open Access Week during 22-28 October and to mark this occasion the Open Access team have a number of news items for the Faculty.

Deposit Statistics for Spiral

During the 2017-18 academic year the Open Access team in the Library ensured 9,604 journal articles, 869 conference papers and 900 theses were deposited in our repository Spiral, as open access.

Medicine and open access

The Open Science Monitor (OSM) of the European Commission has released some analysis on the percentage of open access publications (gold and green) by Fields of Study. This data was gathered through the analysis of Scopus data. Some STM lead in open access (Agriculture, Biology, Medicine, Health) while other SSH/STM are the last (Art, Law, Religion, History, but also some engineering and Chemistry) and the percentage of gold/green varies across subjects due to researchers’ publishing habits.

Interested in open access publishing?

The OA Team of the Library has created an Open Access publications group on Yammer (part of Office 365) which is open to all and allows you to keep up to date and discuss open access with the team or other colleagues in College.

Keep up to date on OA downloads via the Open Access and Digital Scholarship Blog.

Contact: openaccess@imperial.ac.uk | +44 (0)20 7594 2608 | Twitter @OAImperial | website

Events for Open Access Week

Faculty of Medicine academics recognised with 2018 promotions

The College has recognised a total of 54 staff from across the Faculty of Medicine who have been promoted in the 2018 round.

The promotions recognise the achievements and expertise of staff across all faculties and the Business School and take effect from 1 September 2018.

The full list of 139 promoted staff from across the College for the 2018 year can be seen in the following news story.

Congratulations to the following academic staff from the Faculty of Medicine:

Institute of Clinical Sciences

Enrique Martinez-Perez, Reader in Chromosome Biology

Peter Sarkies, Senior Lecturer

Department of Medicine

Janine Bosse, Senior Research Fellow

Angela Brueggemann, Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology

Graham Cooke, Professor of Infectious Diseases

Parviz Habibi, Professor of Practice (Paediatric Medicine)

Christopher John, Reader in Pharmacology

Mark Layton, Professor of Practice (Haematology)

Isabelle Leclerc, Reader in Diabetic Medicine

Ian Maconochie, Professor of Practice (Paediatric Emergency Medicine)

Paresh Malhotra, Reader in Cognitive & Behavioural Neurology

Kikkeri Naresh, Professor of Practice (Pathology)

Eduardo Olavarria, Professor of Practice (Stem Cell Transplantation & Cellular Therapy)

Inga Prokopenko, Reader in Human Genomics

Magdalena Sastre, Reader in Molecular Neuroscience

Tricia Tan, Professor of Practice (Metabolic Medicine & Endocrinology)

Gareth Tudor-Williams, Professor of Paediatric Infectious Diseases

Jonathan Valabhji, Professor of Practice (Diabetes)

Department of Surgery & Cancer

Richard Abel, Senior Lecturer

Veronique Azuara, Reader in Stem Cell Biology

Fernando Bello, Professor of Surgical Computing and Simulation Science

Tom Bourne, Professor of Practice (Gynaecology)

Susan Clark, Professor of Practice (Colorectal Surgery)

Omar Faiz, Professor of Practice (Colorectal Surgery)

Hector Keun, Professor of Biochemistry

Shahid Khan, Professor of Practice (Haepatology)

Maria Kyrgiou, Reader in Gynaecological Oncology

Christoph Lees, Professor of Obstetrics

Daniel Leff, Reader in Breast Surgery

Maud Lemoine, Reader in Haepatology

David Nott, Professor of Practice (Surgery)

Mary O’Brien, Professor of Practice (Medical Oncology)

Brian Saunders, Professor of Practice (Endoscopy)

Rohini Sharma, Reader in Clinical Pharmacology & Medical Oncology

Tiong Ghee Teoh, Professor of Practice (Obstetrics)

Catherine Urch, Professor of Practice (Palliative Medicine)

Mary Wells, Professor of Practice (Cancer Nursing)

National Heart and Lung Institute

Piers Daubeney, Professor of Practice (Paediatric Cardiology)

Sujal Desai, Professor of Practice (Thoracic Imaging)

Gavin Donaldson, Professor of Respiratory Studies

Eric Lim, Professor of Thoracic Surgery

Michael Loebinger, Professor of Practice (Respiratory Medicine)

Andrew Menzies-Gow, Professor of Practice (Respiratory Medicine)

Susanna Price, Professor of Practice (Cardiology & Intensive Care)

Jennifer Quint, Reader in Respiratory Epidemiology

Tristan Rodriguez, Reader in Cell and Developmental Biology

Darryl Shore, Professor of Practice (Congenital Cardiac Surgery)

James Ware, Reader in Genomic Medicine

Zachary Whinnett, Reader in Cardiac Electrophysiology

Robert Wilson, Professor of Practice (Respiratory Medicine)

School of Public Health

Nimalan Arinaminpathy, Reader in Mathematical Epidemiology

Marc Chadeau-Hyam, Reader in Computational Epidemiology and Exposome Sciences

Tini Garske, Senior Lecturer

Thibaut Jombart, Senior Lecturer

 

 

 

 

 

Professor Desmond Johnston, Vice Dean (Education) – the year in review

 

The last year has been, even by our own ‘full-on’ standards, an extraordinarily packed year for the Faculty of Medicine in terms of educational development, both at home and internationally.

The year started with the Faculty welcoming its inaugural student cohort for the newly launched BSc in Medical Biosciences. Harnessing new technologies to deliver a blended syllabus of online and in-class learning,  the new interdisciplinary course also taps into the wide-ranging research programmes underway across the Faculty.  I congratulate everyone involved in creating and delivering this successful first year of the course.

Whilst innovative delivery has been an important cornerstone in the development of the brand new programme, the Medical Biosciences BSc has by no means had the monopoly on educational invention. Course and module leads from right across the Faculty have been hugely active this year in ensuring innovation and scientific opportunity underpins educational development throughout our existing course portfolio.

Innovation and progress

The College’s Learning and Teaching strategy has set a clear path for Imperial educational delivery, and we have seen the start of developments towards providing innovative teaching spaces which will support the utilisation of new pedagogical methods. Over the last several months, work has progressed on the establishment of major review programmes for the curricula of both our undergraduate MBBS/BSc and the postgraduate taught portfolio.  This is a really key and exciting time for educational opportunity in this Faculty, and it is one which holds important possibilities for engagement and skills development for all staff.

You can read more about the work underway for the undergraduate medicine curriculum review, and how you can be part of this key process, on Jo Harris’s recent FoM Staff blog piece.  We want to keep all Faculty staff updated on this important evolving process for both undergraduate and postgraduate provision right through next year so please watch out for further updates and do get in touch for further info.

Alongside our review processes, I’ve also been excited to watch opportunity grow for widening the reach of our education and expertise beyond our London campuses with the exploration and initiation of global online learning opportunities. Developments such as work within the School of Public Health to develop a ‘Global Master of Public Health’ create both exciting new formats for our educational provision and outstanding routes to achieving academic impact and spreading the benefits of our work.

Celebrating achievement

I would not want to let this review go by without noting the extraordinary hard work and many individual achievements that have contributed to the developments outlined above, as well as the quality and dedication that shows itself day-to-day in delivering our courses.  I would like to congratulate those who are recognised through the President’s awards for Excellence in Education and through our own School of Medicine Teaching awards.

Lastly, as I sign-off from writing this review, I cannot fail to mention that I am writing this not from my office, but sitting in Singapore awaiting the start of an event which truly demonstrates how much the innovation, dedication and talent to be found in our Faculty can achieve – the first graduation ceremony for our inaugural student cohort at LKCMedicine. A truly exceptional effort from two partner universities, from LKCMedicine school staff and, it goes without saying, from the students themselves has brought us to this very proud moment.

My thanks to all who have been part of this extraordinary year of opportunity for medicine education at Imperial.

Professor Martin Wilkins, Vice Dean (Research) – the year in review

Professor Martin WilkinsIn my first year as Vice Dean (Research) it has been a pleasure to discover the full breadth and quality of our research.  We continue to build on our strong convergent science, so well demonstrated by our success with initiatives such as the UK Dementia Research Institute (UK DRI) Centre at Imperial, the newly established Health Data Research (HDR) UK, and the Future Vaccine Manufacturing Hub.

The UK DRI at Imperial is led by Professor Paul Matthews and is actively recruiting the best scientists to Imperial to contribute to a UK network to carry out research relevant to all dementias. The HDR has come together to address challenging healthcare issues through use of data science, with Imperial’s participation lead by Professor Paul Elliott in his role as an HDR Associate Director. The Future Vaccine Manufacturing Hub, which involves multiple research partners, is led by Professor Robin Shattock from Imperial’s Department of Medicine, includes scientists from across the Departments of Chemical Engineering and Life Sciences. The aim of the Hub is to improve the response to outbreaks, by distributing vaccines quickly and more cost-effectively.

Addressing major scientific questions requires building a critical mass of multidisciplinary researchers, and Imperial is well placed to do this. So we have been working across faculties to develop multidisciplinary networks of excellence with three new networks established this year in the areas of vaccines, diabetes and vascular science.

Celebrating success

Our translational research received another boost this year with our largest ever award from the MRC’s Confidence in Concept scheme.  As well as £1m received from the MRC, additional funds were provided by our Biomedical Research Centre, Royal Marsden Hospital, Wellcome Trust, EPSRC and AstraZeneca, resulting in total funding of £1.7m. This has been awarded to 26 exciting new research projects, across a broad range of areas and collaborators. The aim of the scheme is to strengthen the College’s early translational research portfolio, providing funding to help with the translation of novel therapeutics, devices and diagnostics towards clinical testing and/or a marketable product. This approach epitomises the research ethos in the Faculty, striving to achieve excellence in research with impact.

There isn’t enough room in this brief piece from me to name all of our investigators, from ECRs to senior researchers, who have been winning prestigious awards. However, congratulations to you all and keep up the good work.

Preparation makes perfect

To help ensure that our researchers remain world-leading, the Faculty Research Committee has taken a proactive approach to a drop in successful MRC awards by implementing ‘MRC Shadow Panels’. These have been established to facilitate systematic review of project grants and NIRG applications to both MRC Infection & Immunity and Population System Medicine Boards.

The Panels comprise senior leaders from across the College who have exceptional MRC success rates. Many work closely with the MRC, and they have considerable experience of peer review and assessment. The strategic feedback offered is invaluable, and participants who have been through Shadow Panel Reviews have found the process extremely helpful.

Our research in the media

I am very proud of the regularity with which our work gains positive media attention and engages the wider public with the importance of research. Again there are far too many to list everything, but a few of my favourites are the wonderful press about our research into using ‘magic mushrooms’ to help with severe depression; a better way of dealing with ‘cyberchondria’ (abnormal health anxiety, made worse by people researching their symptoms online); the negative impacts of London air pollution on the health of unborn babies and older adults; and increasing resistance to antifungal treatments that could lead to global increased disease outbreaks and threats to food security.

Finally I’d just like to wish those taking a break over summer a wonderful holiday, and I’m looking forward to an even more successful year when all hands are back on deck.

Professor Clare Lloyd, Vice Dean (Institutional Affairs) – the year in review

Professor Clare LloydThe past academic year has seen much progress and development across many areas, as we strive to make our Faculty a productive, enjoyable and supportive environment in which to work and learn.

As part of our mission to increase support for career development across the Faculty, a Professional Development Consultant specifically for Fellows has been recruited; Leanne Lillepuu.  Leanne works across the College and has put in place a number of initiatives to provide support for fellows.  As part of this she has been doing a lot of specific work for clinical fellows – joining up the Postdoc and Fellows Development Centre with the CATO (Clinical Academic Training Office). Her remit is to develop an inclusive programme of support and cohort building activities, with the aim of increasing the number of applications, and ultimately the number of fellowships awarded.

Equality, diversity and inclusion

We have established a Faculty Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Committee that will be chaired by Professor Sara Rankin. With a broad remit, this new committee will cover all areas of equality, diversity, inclusion and culture, working closely with the already operational Faculty of Medicine Athena SWAN Committee. We look forward to the Committee’s first meeting this coming September.

Last October our Institute of Clinical Sciences received a Silver Award from Athena SWAN, adding to those held by the Department of Medicine, NHLI and School of Public Health, and the Department of Surgery and Cancer’s Bronze Award. This is part of our ongoing commitment to equality in science and success for all.  The coming six months will see Athena renewal applications being submitted for NHLI,SPH and Surgery and Cancer, with the outcome of the Department of Medicine’s application currently awaited.

Staff Survey Action Plan

Another major action for the coming year is development and improvement of the frameworks we have in place for effective communication within this Faculty.  This response forms part of our Action Plan following the 2017 Staff Survey, from which Faculty staff responses showed that, while there are areas of good practice and strength within the Faculty in terms of communication, there are significant areas where the Faculty can do better in communicating well about issues affecting Faculty life and our strategic direction.

Work on this has already started with the completion of the first round of Dean’s campus roadshows during the Winter/Spring of this year and planning is already underway for the next round this Autumn. Faculty staff from different professional roles and locations are also contributing to discussion about opportunities for improvement: this has helped us to begin to draw out opportunities for investigation and progress.  We will continue to work over the remainder of 2018 to consult, develop, better define and share the Faculty’s approach in this important area.

MBBS Curriculum Review – why and how you should get involved

In response to an ever-changing landscape for medical education, Imperial College School of Medicine is undertaking a major curriculum review covering all aspects of our undergraduate medical programme.

If you’d be interested in being involved in delivering the new curriculum in any capacity or any of the below descriptions applies to you, or if you’d be interested in providing a research experience for the Clinical Research and Innovation module, please get in touch with the Curriculum Review team on curriculumreview@imperial.ac.uk. (more…)