Independent research strategist Dr Thomas Barlow presented at the recent UOW Research and Innovation Forum, which also saw the official launch of UOW Scholars.

Dr Barlow is the author of the Barlow Report ‘The State of Research in Australian Universities’, which has been published since 2007, and remains a key resource to inform strategic decision-making about research in Australian universities.

He spoke to the audience about how, over the last decade, UOW has doubled its scale of research activity.

“This is a significant period of sustained growth and yet UOW remains a friendly and welcoming environment.

“The data shows that UOW is one of the most effective educational institutions in terms of turning its R&D investment dollars (1.8% of national total in 2012) into outputs (2.7% of all universities), and that is impressive.”

In terms of finding other sources of funding in an environment of constrained external resources, Dr Barlow said, “You must become more research intensive, which means increasing investment of your own resources into research, including from consolidated revenues.”

The Research and Innovation Forum was hosted by Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation), Professor Judy Raper. She presented on recent and upcoming research initiatives, including the launch of UOW Scholars – an online platform for academic profiles.

“Scholars is a powerful tool for our academics and will be critical in helping them build their profiles and provide data for reporting, among other things.

“All profiles in UOW Scholars are drawn from the University’s enterprise information systems. The profiles contain pre-populated data that has been carefully curated by the Research Services Office, the University Library and the Information Management Unit within IMTS,” Professor Raper said.

UOW Scholars automatically integrates research publication, grant and HDR supervision data, as well as providing online details on research interests, external networks, teaching experience, outreach activities and a career biography.

An academic’s profile within UOW Scholars provides a summary of activities which can be viewed at any time by anyone. The intuitive interface allows academics to maintain a public web profile and provides a series of powerful visualisations into authorship, outcomes and collaboration activity.

Academic researchers will benefit by being able to showcase their research and expertise, highlight their partnerships and collaborations, raise the visibility of their work through social media platforms, and attract potential HDR students.

Associate Professor Peter Innis from the Intelligent Polymer Research Institute presented his UOW Scholars profile at the forum to show the type of information he chose to include and highlight.

“UOW Scholars provides a uniform way to publicise my research profile. The ability to seamlessly pull together publications, funded research grants and other research based activities with minimal effort is highly attractive.

“Significantly, the ability to see how my research activities relates to co-authors and collaborators in the form of a visual network is a compelling feature. This unique capability helps to identify other avenues for potential collaboration that otherwise may be overlooked,” Associate Professor Innis said.

“This will also be an excellent resource for the media to find our experts in particular fields of research,” Professor Raper said.