School of CS newsletterPublished: Tuesday, 13 March 2018
Weekly newsletter for the School of CS
[ top ]News from Head of School
The deadline for this year's 2018 Research Fish Collection submission is Thursday 15 March. As you should be aware this is an annual exercise where our key funders (RCUK, Wellcome Trust etc) request the submission of details regarding outputs from eligible grants. As of today the School still only has 57% submission.
I emphasise the importance of 100% compliance in the exercise – PI’s who fail to submit their outputs when requested risk loss of research funding as follows:
- Research Councils have agreed a harmonised policy regarding the responsibilities of researchers to complete a Research Fish return, as part of the standard terms and conditions of holding an award.
- All Research Councils have now implemented the terms of this policy and will remove eligibility for funding from researchers that are not compliant.
- All Councils will implement the policy from 2015
There were staff meetings on the 7 February that were held to discuss the proposal that the FSE would be re-organised into two schools. At that time the location of the School of Materials and the School of Computer Science was undecided. The discussions on the locations of these two schools have now taken place and the proposal from the FLT is that the School of Computer Science will go into the School of Engineering. The heads of the engineering schools were enthusiastic to have us in the School of Engineering and I take this as a very positive point.
The proposal from the FSE that there should be two schools has to go through the Planning and Resources Committee and then Senate. This should all happen by the end of April. So we will know then whether or not it will all happen. Should it happen, which it probably will, then the changes will be made in time for 1 August 2019.
Congratulations to Uli Sattler on her election to the University Senate. Senate is the main body for governance of the academic part of the university. It is good to see that Computer Science is continuing with its excellent presence on Senate, as Caroline jay has been on senate for the past six years and now Uli will start her three year term.
The Kilburn Building Courtyard remains unlevelled. This was due to be complete by now, but issues with the roof leaking have persisted. Until the leaks have been fixed the re-instating of the Courtyard cannot be completed. The current date for the courtyard work to recommence is the end of March 2018.
The strong winds of the other week blew out some of the windows from the old walkway. When the doors were opened to the outside, the strong wind came in and the windows were not up to the job. This happened at 8 a.m. and I’m thankful that this happened at a time when there were no people around. This has been registered as a “near miss”.
[ top ]News and announcements
The University expects all travel and accommodation for University business to be booked through the Egencia system. This helps us to ensure that only reputable hotels are used and also so that the University can trace its staff and students should a major incident occur in the country concerned. Please contact ACSO for help with your Egencia bookings.
Please also be aware that the University insurance policy does not cover claims as a result of incidents in private homes, hostels and AirBnB - see http://documents.manchester.ac.uk/display.aspx?DocID=1730 for further information. Such accommodation is unlikely to have been inspected by the local authorities to ensure compliance with H&S safety standards, such as electrical safety and hygiene. Therefore the use of AirBnB and similar accommodation is strongly discouraged.
[ top ]Events
We are combining a HoS coffee morning with a 'meet the finance team' event at 10.30am on Thursday 26th April.
This is to provide School staff with an opportunity to meet informally with colleagues from the new Faculty finance hub. Please do come along to say hello and ask any questions you might have.
[ top ]Research News
The UK Government has published a document with an overview of the UK's relationship with Horizon 2020.
The document contains a Q&A, which clarifies the UK's eligibility to participate in Horizon 2020 and includes information on the impact of the provisions outlined in the recent Joint Report between the EU negotiators and the UK Government.
The UK Government encourages the UK research and innovation community to continue applying for Horizon 2020 funding and participating in projects and stresses that:
- The Joint Report envisages that existing projects will continue to receive an uninterrupted flow of EU funding for the lifetime of the project.
- The Joint Report envisages that UK participants will be eligible to bid for Horizon 2020 funding for the duration of the programme, including after the UK's withdrawal from the EU.
The Q&A also covers important issues such as questions on FP7 and FP9, eligibility for individual Horizon 2020 grants and coordination of Horizon 2020 consortia.
Further information about EU research funding and Brexit can be found on StaffNet.
The UK Government Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) published its position paper last week on the European Union's ninth Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (FP9).
The paper sets out the UK Government's view on how Horizon 2020's successor programme could provide the best economic and social benefits to European citizens as the European Commission begins to develop its formal FP9 proposal. Reiterating statements made by Theresa May in her speech at Mansion House, the paper highlights the UK's ambition for strong future collaboration with the EU in the area of research and innovation "...through a far-reaching science and innovation pact" allowing for the UK to continue to take part in EU programmes alongside its EU partners with formal options for UK participation in FP9 under consideration.
The paper reflects on the ambition and success of Horizon 2020, including its ability to flexibly respond to new challenges and technologies as evidenced by the Interim Evaluation. Taking into account the recommendations made in the Lamy Report, it suggests that this success could be further strengthened by highlighting and elaborating on nine key components:
- A continued focus on excellence;
- Being open to the world and strengthening international cooperation;
- Adopting a mission-oriented approach determined via a flexible and consultative approach;
- Further simplification and reduction of the administrative burden for participants;
- Spreading excellence and supporting the development of underrepresented groups;
- Ensuring European added value and complementing national programmes;
- Tackling Europe’s innovation gap and ensuring industrial competitiveness by exploiting research successes, understanding emerging opportunities, considering the wider industrial landscape and focusing on European added value;
- Demonstrating the impact of its benefits in enhancing growth and providing wider social benefits; and
- Rationalising the number of partnership instruments ensuring those that are effective can continue to succeed.
The paper advocates retaining Horizon 2020's three pillar structure in FP9 with excellence determining funding awards across the programme, but suggests a more ambitious approach to international cooperation allowing for fair terms for associated and third country participation that do not impose any undue financial or administrative burden.
The UK is equally supportive of a mission-oriented approach, particularly as a means to inspire and engage public interest, suggesting mission selection could be guided by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) with input from participating states in consultation with stakeholders, while ensuring European interests are reflected.
Further information from the paper and on EU research funding can be found on StaffNet.
[ top ]Tech Support News
I recently updated http://supervisors.cs.man.ac.uk with details provided by some new members of acstaff. If you are not in there and would like to be, or you would like to amend your content, please just get in touch: email@example.com.
[ top ]Sustainability and Green Impact News
The new toolkit is now live - you can visit the toolkit via this link: http://www.greenimpact.org.uk/manchester
If you are interested in joining the team then please email Ruth Maddocks know and register yourself - attach yourself to our Team: School of Computer Science.
I'll be arranging a kick-off meeting soon - so let Ruth know if you want to get involved
Please also register as a Sustainability Champion, the handbook for the Sustainability Champions programme is now available to download from our website. To register as a Sustainability Champion for this academic year, please use our online registration. We are asking for everyone to re-register this year even if you have previously signed-up.
See the Environmental Sustainability website for other ways to get involved: