The Public Engagement Lab: Researcher and GLAM collaborations
The Public Engagement Lab was a professional development course designed to take participants through a collaborative process to design and pitch public engagement projects that challenge their usual ways of working. The programme covered the entire lifecycle of project ideation, development, delivery and evaluation, providing support and funding for four projects. Find out what they did and how they did it, along with the benefits researchers and the Gardens, Libraries and Museums (GLAM) experienced through their collaborations.
Ken Amor and Sarah Lloyd (Museum of Natural History) were awarded £5,000 with the aim of working with year 11 and 12 teenagers to explore the science of the IPCC reports and reinterpret them, with the support of researchers and museum collections and staff, by creating their own ‘report’ (written, video, art or performance), and sharing this report with policy and decision-makers.
Jacob Ward (formerly Mathematical Institute) worked with the Bodleian Library on the project that aimed to diversify the voices writing the future by inviting young people to collaborate with science and humanities researchers and a ‘writer in residence’.
Shamit Shrivastava (formerly Engineering Science), Kelly Richards and Carly Smith-Huggins (Museum of Natural History) were provided with £13,000 to use the topic of ‘bubbles in action’ (how they can act as a model for cellular mechanics, and be used by biomedical engineering applications) to highlight how science can work beyond disciplinary boundaries, so people see science differently. The project created a pop-up experience in communities in Oxford, targeting young people (10-13) and their families. A free kit of ‘do-at-home’ experiments and investigations was given out, providing a way to connect with researchers, and to visit the Museum of Natural History to share what they’ve learned and discovered.
Julien Carponcy (MRC Brain Network Dynamics Unit), Joy Todd (GLAM Division) and Jozie Kettle (Pitt Rivers Museum) were awarded £12,000 to support people with motor-related neurological conditions (such as Parkinson’s, and their families and carers) to work with researchers, engineers, and artists/fashion designers to create their own aesthetically pleasing mobility solutions, and to empower them to manage their day to day lives, inspired and provoked by collections from the Pitt Rivers Museum.