Public Engagement Masterclass

20–22 July 2016

Wellcome Genome Campus, Hinxton, UK


Public engagement is increasingly important for researchers, and
understanding its relevance and being able to develop a plan of
activities to engage the public with your research and evidence its
impact are key skills to acquire. This course aimed at newly independent
and other mid-career researchers and will provide the opportunity to
explore the role of engagement and how you and your group can engage with
non-specialist publics outside academia in an effective and rewarding

The programme will address the wider societal context of public
engagement with research and how best to engage relevant public groups
(e.g. community members, patients, school children, curious adults) with
research. Participants will improve their own communication skills,
explore the dynamics of partnering with different communities, and be
introduced to a range of tools to better measure the impact of their
public engagement activities. The course will incorporate a mixture of
workshop-style sessions, individual reflections, panel discussions and
short talks from prominent researchers who have successfully embedded
public engagement within their work. The aim is to provide inspiration
and support to enable newly independent researchers to develop a
personalised and proactive plan for public engagement that has impact.

Applicants must hold a research-related position at a research institute
(or equivalent) or higher education institution. Priority will be given
to newly independent researchers (PIs) and intermediate level researchers
who are keen to embed public engagement within their research activities.
The workshop is open to researchers from all disciplines, with a limited
number of bursaries offered those funded by the Wellcome Trust and The
Royal Society. Please note that most case studies/examples of public
engagement discussed will be within the UK context. To optimize
discussions and interactions between tutors and participants, numbers are
limited; therefore early application is advised.

Learning outcomes
Following attendance of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Comprehend the breadth of activities incorporated within ‘public engagement’, and be able to identify specific aspects of relevance to them and their own research.
  • Explain why researchers should engage with the public, reflected at individual, research group, discipline, institutional and funder (e.g. the Wellcome Trust, RCUK) levels.
  • Identify the most relevant audience(s) for their research and understand how to engage with them effectively
  • Evaluate their public engagement activity, and demonstrate research impact.
  • Develop a strategic approach for public engagement with research for their research including their research team.


The course will start at approximately 10.00 on Wednesday 20 July and
close at approximately 15.00 on Friday 22 July 2016.

Topics will include:

  • The context for public engagement
  • Purposes and audiences
  • How to engage
  • Strategic evaluation
  • Making the most of partnerships
  • Community partners and patient groups
  • Cultural organisations
  • Evidencing Impact: how does public engagement help?
  • Turning your plans into action
  • Making a case for public engagement

This is a residential course. All students are requested to stay onsite
for the full duration to benefit fully from discussions and interactions
with the faculty and other students.

Instructors and speakers

Programme committee
Karen Bultitude
University College London, UK
Sophie Duncan
National Coordinating Centre for Public
Engagement, UK
Steve Scott Wellcome Genome Campus, UK
Chloe Sheppard Wellcome Trust, UK

Confirmed tutors
Kim Aumann
Boing Boing Community Interest Company, UK
Jonathan Copley
University of Southampton, UK
Becky Gilmore Wellcome Genome Campus, UK
Anna Middleton Wellcome Genome Campus, UK
Catherine Rhodes University of Cambridge, UK

Event organiser
Laura Hubbard Wellcome Genome Campus, UK

How to apply


Registration with Single Accommodation £553.00

The fees include accommodation, meals and lectures for the duration of
the course. The fee will be requested once acceptance is confirmed.

This is a residential course. All participants will stay at The Wellcome
Genome Campus Conference Centre, Hinxton, Cambridge, for the nights of 20
and 21 July 2016.

If you wish to book onsite accommodation either side of the summer
school/course dates, please contact the Conference

Application deadline: Closed

Places on this course are limited to 25 participants.
Travel visas
Please contact the event organiser if you require a letter to support a
travel visa application. Note that letters will be provided to confirmed

Non-European Economic Area or Swiss nationals may be required to have a
visa to enter the UK.
Early application is strongly advised, as this process can take 6-8 weeks
or longer.

Please visit the following websites for further information:
UK Border Agency website: www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/visas-immigration/
Information for general visitors and business visitors: www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/visas-immigration/visiting/business/business-activities/


Registration bursaries are only
available for applicants funded by the Wellcome Trust and The Royal Society.

The following will need to be provided:

  • Covering letter
  • Evidence of funding

To apply, please contact the event organiser.


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