Research Lifecycle Project Q: Innovation Clubs

Innovation Clubs help to build communities of practice around key digital research technologies and provide a forum for researchers to share their knowledge, experience and practical skills in these areas.

Club activity aligns closely with Digital Futures theme communities, particularly in the six capability themes of Data Science & AIDigital Trust & SecurityHuman centred DesignSocial Media & Networks and Internet of Things, which will also be of interest to club members.

This activity is also part of wider IT club activity Computation and Data in research (CaDiR).

How do I participate?

What are the clubs?

There are currently six active club communities:

  • VR@Manchester (Lead: Dr Tony Payton)
  • Robotics (Leads: Prof. Angelo Cangelosi & Prof. Barry Lennox)
  • Mapping & GIS (Lead: Dr Jonny Huck)
  • Additive Manufacturing (Lead: Dr Wajira Mirihanage)
  • Imaging (Lead: Prof. Tim Cootes)
  • Data Science (Leads: Dr David Wong, Dr Tingting Mu, Dr Matthew Thorpe)

How will it benefit me?

  • Access to a mechanism to foster collaborative ideas and projects
  • Opportunities to pool research technology resources, share equipment and the opportunity to collaborate with others in different fields and apply for technology-focused funding/grants together
  • Opportunity to meet researchers across different disciplines with similar technology interest, but differing research questions
  • Access to a robust community of Early Career Researchers to collaborate with
  • Collaboration links with the Digital Futures research themes

What do clubs do?

Most clubs meet monthly to:

  • Present their research and discuss sticking points that the community may be able to help them with
  • Find new collaboration partners from across the University
  • Ask questions within the community so that members can share experience/ideas to save time
  • Share ideas on funding calls that are relevant to the community
  • Share equipment (if free) and resources
  • Discuss technology/methodology advances and provide advice on what to/not to buy
  • Advertise talks that may be of interest to the community & widen participation across campus.
  • Occasionally we are able to schedule a speaker in the research area.

Each club has a dedicated Microsoft Teams space to network, share research updates, ask for advice or input from other club members, and receive information about upcoming club meetings. Clubs will meet for coffee from early 2022, in addition to some meetings continuing virtually, and we will run a larger face-to-face showcase next spring.

Innovation Clubs: