The National Co-ordinating Centre for Public Engagement [NCCPE] was established in 2008 as part of the £9.2m Beacons for Public Engagement initiative. Based at the Watershed Centre in Bristol, the NCCPE is a partnership between the University of Bristol and University of the West of England. We are a small core team of eight, headed by Director Paul Manners.
Our vision is of a higher education sector making a vital, strategic and valued contribution to 21st-century society through its public engagement activity. We are working to help support universities to improve, value and increase the quantity and quality of their public engagement activity, and embed it into their core practice.
We work with the Beacons to synthesise learning from their work, and disseminate it. In addition we work with Universities across the Higher Education sector to learn from them, and develop resources, research and events that capture the huge value of public engagement, and equip people to get involved.
We are keen to ensure that we support university staff and students across all roles and subjects to get involved in appropriate public engagement activity.
Our website is a rapidly growing resource for the sector – with information about funding, examples of good practice, upcoming events, news and other resources.
We are developing a manifesto for universities to sign to declare their support and intentions around public engagement and will encourage University senior managers to sign up to develop their institution’s work in this area.
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The NCCPE has partnered the BBC on an exciting...
The NCCPE has partnered the BBC on an exciting interactive website to accompany the BBC hands-on science TV series, Bang Goes the Theory. The website features a science Q&A fronted by one of the shows presenters, Dr Yan Wong. Here questions from members of the public are answered by Yan and researchers from the Beacons for Public Engagement initiative and the Open University.
The programme launched on 27 July, 7.30pm on BBC One and a second series is currently being planned.
This unique partnership with the BBC has been established by the NCCPE who have created an interactive space where academics from the beacons can come together to view the questions that have been asked, and to contribute their answers. Questions can be answered in text, film or text and image. As this online community works together university researchers will develop skills and experience, making their answers more accessible to a wide range of people.
A series of workshops to help academics and students gain the skills to get involved are also offered by the NCCPE.
There is lots of impressive public engagement work...
There is lots of impressive public engagement work happening across the UK, as well as universities that are trying to embed public engagement within their own institution. You can read about some of this work here.
If you have your own example that could inspire others get in touch via our website.
In November 2009 we hosted an OPEN HOUSE event in...
In November 2009 we hosted an OPEN HOUSE event in Bristol. The event provided a perfect opportunity for those involved in University public engagement to come together and discuss all the issues around the subject, as well as hear stories from the Beacons and other stakeholders about how public engagement is being embedded in institutions across the country. Check the website to find out more. Here's a taster from Professor Steve West of the University of West England.
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