Adapting global engagement during the pandemic
2 December 2020
During these unprecedented times, UCL academics are rethinking and reshaping how they conduct their research with global partners
When the COVID-19 pandemic began earlier this year, it was quickly followed by new limitations and restrictions that impacted how academics could conduct their research and continue engaging with colleagues overseas.
UCL academics who were in the middle of collaborating with global partners on research projects rose to the challenge and have swiftly adapted to new ways of working.
For example, Professor Andrea Révész (UCL Institute of Education), a recipient of 2019-20 Global Engagement Funds, had to introduce new ways of carrying out her research with partners in Italy and the USA. In their work to resurrect historic locations as virtual models to help students learn English, the researchers introduced strict hygiene standards and social distancing measures when testing the models.
Dr Nathaniel Morris (UCL History), also a recipient of last year’s round of Global Engagement Funds, used the funds to kick-start a collaboration with colleagues in Mexico, France and the USA exploring the production of illicit opium. To keep the collaboration going throught the pandemic, Nathaniel has been using digital tools to continue discussions online, as well as carrying out research remotely with the help of on-the-ground contacts in Mexico.
Recipients of 2020-21 global engagement funding, including UCL Strategic Partner Funds, Cities Partnerships Programme Funds and Global Engagement Funds, are strongly encouraged to explore remote methods of collaboration when carrying out their projects in the new year.
The Global Engagement Office has put together a list of further reading on how UCL academcis can adapt research to the “new normal.”
The Global Engagement Funds and Cities Partnerships Programme Funds are currently accepting applications until 13 December 2020. These funding schemes help support UCL academics to collaborate with global partners and in the city-regions of Rome, Paris and/or Stockholm. Please note the UCL Strategic Partner Funds 2020-21 are now closed.
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