Special Award For Pandemic Response Text and Trophy

Nottingham Institute for Policy & Engagement Pandemic Award

With all the amazing work colleagues at all three University of Nottingham international campuses have been involved in during the Covid-19 pandemic, it was an honour to have been short-listed for the Nottingham Institute for Policy and Engagement Pandemic Award.

This was a one-off award for 2020 which recognises any member of staff who has made an outstanding contribution to ensuring that UoN research plays a central part in supporting the public response, in any country or internationally, to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The winners of the award were the Pandemic Response Team led by Jamie Thompson for their work to build the  University of Nottingham Covid-19 Testing Service and Professor Ali Cheshmehzangi for his work on the city of Ningbo’s resilience plan.

The other shortlisted nominee in this category was Professor Hywel Williams (School of Medicine), for his work to galvanise a coordinated research response to the pandemic.

I was nominated for my  work as part of the Research Data Alliance (RDA) Covid-19 working group. I was co-moderator of the community participation working group creating recommendations and guidelines on Covid-19 open data sharing and a Covid-19 resource database.

Diagram of RDA COVID-19 sub-groups, research areas and cross-cutting themes

To enhance the impact of the guidelines to inform policy on Covid-19 data sharing, I contributed as co-author and editor of an additional open access publication currently in press: Austin CC, Bernier A, Bezuidenhout L et al. Fostering global data sharing: highlighting the recommendations of the Research Data Alliance COVID-19 working group Wellcome Open Res 2020, 5:267 (doi.org/10.12688/wellcomeopenres.16378.1)

To further increase global dissemination of the guidelines, I presented the Community Participation working group recommendations as part of the COVID-19 Panel at RDA Adoption Session, during the virtual RDA Plenary 16 (9-12th November 2020). At the plenary, I also gave a presentation to the Citizen Science and Community Participation session on ‘Patient and Public Involvement in Research: Considerations for Citizen Science’ discussing the potential involvement of different communities in data collection and management.

Costa Rican Landscape with test promoting RDA 16th Plenary session 2020

As well as congratulating the winners and and fellow nominees I must thank everyone who has joined me in breakfast, lunch and evening meetings to undertake these activities. 

Thanks to all the members of the Research Data Alliance who collaborated in our Covid-19 guidelines and recommendation production. With special thanks to Kate Frost members of the Nottingham University Hospital Covid-19 PPI Task Force for their input into the RDA recommendations and Nottingham BRC Musculoskeletal theme for funding my RDA conference attendance to present and discuss the Covid research recommendations along with the importance of PPI in citizen science.


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