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The aim of this course is to interactively explore several methods which promote creativity and generate ideas. It will also use techniques to evaluate the ideas generated for their potential for research directions and/or commercial exploitation.


Generating ideas is key to being a researcher: whether those ideas are what to research next, how to tackle a tricky research question or thinking about the impact of your discoveries. Knowing how to evaluate these ideas is the obvious next important step. These skills are also part of the entrepreneurs toolkit. We will use creativity and evaluation tools from a variety of sources to get beyond the “blank page” and find the gems in the ideas generated. The course will be interactive and use your research project as a staring point.

This course will cover:

  • Tools for idea generation and creativity
  • Tools for evaluation, thinking in both research and commercial terms
  • Demand pull ideas
  • Technology push products
  • The potential impact of ideas
  • The next step for ideas (funding, spin-outs etc.)


 By the end of this session students will have:

  • Explored several idea generation tools with their peers
  • Used methods for evaluating generated ideas
  • Looked at processes that are demand pulled and technology pushed
  • Thought about the wider impact of their research


PGR and Research Staff 

number of places



Dr Emma Williams


Information about the next scheduled course, and how to apply for a place, are in our course programme.


A2, A3

The Researcher Development Framework (RDF) provides a framework for planning and supporting the personal, professional and career development of graduate students and research staff.