Beltane Public Engagement Network

Opportunities Calendar

Early Career Physics Communicator Award 2017
Oct 2 all-day

The IOP Physics Communicators Group invites applications from people at the start of their careers in physics who have undertaken activities that support and encourage excellent communication of physics.

The deadline for applications is 2 October 2017.

Shortlisted applicants will give a presentation demonstrating their physics communication methods at a special event on 24 November 2017. The winner will receive £250 and a certificate from our guest judge and speaker at the event, Helen Czerski.

For more details on how to apply and to download an application form please visit the prize website linked above.


Beltane Public Engagement Fellowships | Call for Applications 2017/18
Oct 30 all-day



The Beltane Public Engagement Network (Beltane) is a network for people interested in making academic research accessible to a wide variety of audiences. We work with the four Edinburgh universities: the University of Edinburgh, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh Napier University and Queen Margaret University.

To date we have appointed 34 Beltane Public Engagement Fellows and two honorary Beltane Fellows, including five Parliament Fellowships. Beltane Fellowships undertaken between 2008 and 2015.

This year’s Fellowships are funded by the Institute for Academic Development at the University of Edinburgh and are only open to the University of Edinburgh staff at this time.  We are expecting to put out separate calls for Edinburgh Napier and Heriot Watt University staff shortly.

Now that public engagement and impact activities are recognised as essential to a researchers’ role these Fellowships do not buy out a researchers time, but instead provide funds (up to £1k) for training, travel and/or activities.  In addition, Fellows will have access to mentoring, advice and practical assistance to develop a portfolio of public engagement activities.

Purpose, scope and themes

Beltane Fellowships in are for academic and research staff. The Fellowships provide funding, mentoring, training, advice and practical support for staff to develop their portfolio of public engagement activities.

It is not essential, but it is desirable that you are able to show that your engagement activity is relevant to one of the six RCUK cross cutting themes in a Scottish context. The themes are:

  • Digital economy
  • Energy
  • Global Food Security
  • Global uncertainties; security for all in a changing world
  • Living with environmental change
  • Lifelong health and wellbeing

In addition the Beltane has a close partnership with Scotland’s Futures Forum based at the Scottish Parliament and there is an opportunity for the Fellowship to be hosted by SFF if the topic chosen is relevant to Scottish Parliament future business.

All Fellowship applications must show how the proposed work is relevant in the Scottish context.


Eligibility and funding

To be eligible for a Beltane Fellowship in 2017-18 you must be a member of academic or research staff at the University of Edinburgh; support staff are not eligible to apply. You must be employed at grade 6 level or above. If you are employed on a fixed-term contract, your termination date must be beyond December 2018.

Funding for University of Edinburgh applicants is provided by the Institute for Academic Development. We are expecting to put out separate calls for Edinburgh Napier, Heriot Watt and Queen Margaret University staff shortly.

All applicants must provide written support from their supervisor, line manager, Head of School or other equivalent as part of their initial application.

All applicants must be provisionally available to attend for interview on the 15 November 2017.


Application process

The application process consists of a short form and an interview. Key dates are:

  • Deadline for form submission: 11 am, Monday  30 October 2017
  • Interview for shortlisted candidates: Wednesday 15 November 2017
  • Deadline for notification of interview outcomes: Early December 2017
  • Fellowship start date: 1st January 2018
  • Latest date for Fellowship completion: 30 June 2018

Beltane Fellowship application form (Word)

Beltane Fellowship application form (PDF)

Expected outcomes

Examples of suitable activities for consideration would include but are not limited to:

  • Developing and managing a cross-discipline or cross-institution public event in an area relevant to public policy.
  • Working closely with government, charitable or public-interest agencies to foster links between academia, policy makers and the public.
  • Developing training programmes for staff development in the skills required for good public engagement.  This could include transferring existing models of best practice in training to or from the Fellow’s own institution.
  • Stimulate, support, and facilitate public engagement activity across an institution, School, Faculty or department by developing a network of PE practitioners, creating a web presence about PE activity and/or Co-ordinating and recording engagement activities across the institution.
  • Working with media partners to develop materials (print, film or podcast) for a media campaign about research in an area relevant to public policy.

We expect to see reflective evaluation by the Fellow of their experience and activities. We also hope that Fellows will share their learning with the members of the Beltane and beyond; this could be achieved through the maintenance of a reflective blog, or by publishing a detailed case study.

On completion of the Fellowship, the Fellow is expected to act as a key contact and ambassador for public engagement within their institution. The Fellow is also required to disseminate the outcomes of the Fellowship to colleagues at their employing institution.


Appointment criteria

Factors which will be taken into account when choosing candidates for appointment are:

  • Timeliness.
  • How relevant the applicant’s research is to the call theme (where applicable).
  • Whether the Fellowship will include cross-disciplinary or cross-institution activities.
  • Whether the Fellowship will be supported by contributions in-kind, such as hosting at a non-academic organisation.
  • Whether the Fellowship has the support and involvement of non-academic partners.
  • Whether there are plans for evaluation and dissemination strategies.
  • Whether the proposed work has the potential to leverage further funding.
  • Whether the proposed work has potential to feed into public policymaking process.
  • Whether the applicant has plans for post-Fellowship propagation of engagement activities in their home institution.
  • How the candidate will use the resources of the Beltane Network for their development plans.

Previous experience in public engagement activities will not necessarily be an advantage and we would encourage staff new to this area to apply. 


Questions and advice

 We encourage anyone considering an application for a Beltane Fellowship to contact us before submitting their form. Beltane staff will be able to offer informal advice and answer any specific questions you may have.

BIG Awards: The Josh Award 2018
Apr 20 all-day

Deadline for applications: 5pm, 20th April 2018

This award is for an early-career STEM professional.

The Josh Award is the UK’s national Award in science communication, established to recognise and encourage talented innovation and creativity in science communication and engagement.

The award provides the opportunity to become the science communicator in residence at the Manchester Science Festival, developing and delivering a new project or event while showcasing best practice in the field of science communication.

Find out more at

NERC 2018 Impact Awards
May 21 all-day

Deadline: 21st May 2018


These awards celebrate and reward NERC-funded researchers, as individuals or teams, whose work has had substantial impact on the economy and society either in the UK or abroad.

Awards are made in three categories:

  • Economic Impact Award: Recognising research that has led to demonstrable economic benefit.
  • Societal Impact Award: Recognising research that has led to demonstrable social, cultural, public policy or service, health, environmental or quality of life benefits.
  • Early Career Impact Award: Recognising an early career researcher who has achieved demonstrable economic and/or societal impact.

The category winner judged to have had the greatest impact will be selected to receive the Overall Impact Award.




Images of Public Engagement 2018
Jul 16 all-day

Are you involved with public engagement in higher education? Do you have an inspiring image you want to share?

The NCCPE is delighted to launch a new national competition, Images of Public Engagement 2018.

We want to invite you to join in with the NCCPE’s 10th anniversary celebrations and help us capture the breadth of fantastic public engagement work taking place throughout UK universities. From collaborative research to culture change, our image competition offers the opportunity to celebrate and share what public engagement means to you.

Whether you’re an engaged academic, student, public engagement professional or someone who partners with universities, we’d love to see your images and stories of public engagement. This is a chance to share inspiring engagement activities, culture change initiatives, and the people involved in public engagement.

Submit your image by 16th July and be in with a chance of winning a ticket for the NCCPE’s Engage Conference, or new photography and art materials!

Winning entries will also be showcased as part of our 10th anniversary celebrations, featuring on our website and in a new-look Manifesto for Public Engagement.

Find out more & apply on the NCCPE website:

For any enquiries, please email

Royal Academy of Engineering Ingenious Public Engagement Awards
Oct 1 all-day

Closing date for applications: 4pm, Monday 1 October 2018

Ingenious, the Royal Academy of Engineering’s public engagement grant scheme is now open for applications.

Apply now for funding for between £3,000 and £30,000.

If you or your colleagues have an imaginative idea that could help engineers to communicate their expertise and passion for engineering to a wider audience, the Academy wants to hear from you. You could be an engineer interested in running your own project, or a science or engineering public engagement professional keen to explore ways to provide public engagement training and opportunities.

Ingenious is an grant scheme for projects that engage the public with engineers and engineering. Ingenious projects provide opportunities for engineers to take part in public engagement activities, to gain skills in communication and to bring engineering to the very centre of society.

Ingenious aims to:

  • inspire creative public engagement with engineering projects
  • motivate engineers to share their stories, passion and expertise with wider audiences and develop their communication and engagement skills
  • raise awareness of the diversity, nature and impact of engineering among people of all ages and backgrounds
  • provide opportunities for engineers to engage with members of the public from groups currently underrepresented in engineering

The Royal Academy of Engineering prioritises projects that reach diverse and underrepresented audiences including communities in the top 25% most deprived neighbourhoods in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and that engage with engineers and people of different genders, ages and ethnic backgrounds.

The Academy welcome proposals from engineers, universities, science and engineering communicators and engagement professionals, colleges and schools.

Funding will be awarded in April 2019 with projects running from May 2019 to July 2020.


Contact Us

The Beltane Public Engagement Network
The Institute for Academic Development
1 Morgan Lane, Edinburgh, EH8 8FP

Phone: 0131 650 4874/4875

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