Volunteers sought to help guide researchers

Volunteers sought to help guide researchers

Volunteers are being sought to join a new panel which it’s hoped will help guide aspects of research at the University of Aberdeen.

The University’s College of Life Sciences and Medicine (CLSM) is recruiting members of the public onto the panel which also aims to bolster activities undertaken by the University Public Engagement with Research team.

Dr Margaret Watson, Senior Research Fellow and CLSM Public Engagement Co-ordinator, said: “This is a new initiative for the College of Life Sciences and one that we hope could be really helpful to our scientists, as well as giving our panellists an insight into the wide range of research we carry out at Aberdeen.

“When researchers apply to funding bodies for money to carry out their work they need to complete summaries about what they are proposing to do, and sometimes this can be tricky for scientists to explain in layman’s terms. Our panellists could help provide advice on funding applications and research reports using layman’s terms.

“Panellists would also be asked their opinions about research being planned or already underway and they could also get the opportunity to tell us about the kind of research they think we should be carrying out.

“As well as helping review documents, further down the line they could help with the public dissemination of results from studies, which we do via activities such as our popular Café Scientifique series.”

Panellists should be 18 and over and don’t need any specialist knowledge of research. Contact with panellists would mainly be via email or ‘phone although face-to-face meetings would take place at the University, maybe three or four times a year.

Dr Watson added: “The University is very good at engaging externally with the public but we want to improve how we engage the public internally with us. I hope this new panel will achieve this as well as help strengthen our research.”