Friday, 15 June 2012
Sparking new initiatives
I had assumed that as most of the Relu research projects have finished things might quieten down a bit at the Relu Director's Office. Although this is the case from an administrative point of view, communications seem as busy as ever. This is gratifying as we did make an argument for extending my role until March next year on the basis that there was more value to be extracted from the programme. But as I have been starting to put together our next newsletter I have been particularly struck by the amount of activity now being sparked off by Relu, with plenty of news still to tell. Researchers who dipped their toes into interdisciplinarity, often for the first time, via a Relu project, are moving on to new ventures. These often build on Relu research. We are also seeing real impacts coming through as ideas from the research emerge as mainstream thinking. It's a subtle process and one that we have tried to pin down during the recent evaluation work carried out for ESRC. It certainly feels as though Relu lives on and has had effects both in academia and the wider world. A recent meeting with the heads of the research councils was very encouraging, if probing at times, and once again I felt that this is an initiative I'm glad to be part of.