UCM Research Festival 2020 Showcases Academic Exploration

University College Isle of Man's (UCM) second annual Festival of Research saw a tremendous turnout, with a mixture of students, and members of the public, coming together to listen to some insightful and engaging applied academic discussions. 

The unifying concept of this year’s festival, was ‘sustainable’, meaning to ‘focus on meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of the future’. This theme aimed to reflect an emerging outcome of the disruptive impact of covid-19 – that individuals, organisations and governments are reconsidering how we live best. Best in the sense of our natural resource, our health, how our economies work, equality of opportunity etc.

The event saw a variety of both experienced, and new, researchers providing insightful and eclectic range presentations on their areas of expertise.

UCM Honorary Fellow Dr. Rachel Glover delivered a fascinating presentation on The Isle of Man and covid-19: the evolution of a pandemic. Sarah Mercer from Culture Vannin discussed Island Utopias, and people’s hopes and fears for the future.

Dr. Amy Monroe, then spoke about Contagious Altruism, a theory which demonstrates the evolutionary basis for and benefits of ‘kindness’. Research newcomer and UCM BSc Hons Public Health graduate, Lonan Challis, then discussed her study, the Listening Project, on how the Hospice Isle of Man strategy to improve palliative and end of life care was made in partnership with the Island community.

Finally, UCM lecturer Dr. Christa McCartney, presented her research on developing business leaders in sustainable practices -Business for good is good for business.

Jo Pretty, Principal of UCM, said, “We are extremely pleased to return for our second Festival of Research, and to have such a broad variety of experienced researchers spare their time to share such unique academic projects.”

“Research is a valuable component of today’s society, as a primary source of innovation across all academic disciplines.  This year’s festival has given us a flavour of how researchers are utilising different methodologies for their work, and how our understanding of research outcomes, are shaping future directions, not only for our Island’s economy but also for sustainable local and global futures”.

The day also saw two 2020 UCM graduates, Myfanwy Gelder and Callum Staley, winners of the Dissertation Showcase, presenting their dissertation findings, and how they achieved their research. This was followed by workshops for those planning to undertake their first research projects. 

UCM is committed to being at the forefront of education and innovation on the Isle of Man and the annual Research Festival is organised by Research Vannin, UCM’s collaborative information and resource hub, committed to supporting and developing the research community across the Isle of Man.