February 28, 2013, by Graham Kendall

Horizon Digital Nutrition Sandpit … and the winners are ….

Last week we reported on the Horizon Digital Nutrition Workshop. We said that we would would report the outcome of the event, as the results were not known at the time.

We are very pleased to announce that the winning team’s project is called Understanding Underutilisation. The members of the team are shown in the header picture. They are (left to right):

  • Richard Mortier (Horizon)
  • Brigitte Graf  (UNMC)
  • Vicky Shipp (Horizon)
  • Martin Flintham (Horizon)
  • Mehdi Maqbool (CFFRC)
  • Hani Behrang Parhizkar (UNMC)

Their proposal aims to survey and ethnographic study (aided by the use of sensors) shopping habits in UK and Malaysia to attempt to find out why so many crops are underutilised.

The team have been awarded the full £10,000 made available by Horizon and are utilising about half of the other funding made available by CFFRC and the Faculty of Science, UNMC. That is, about £5,000 of the £10,000 available from those sources.

This, we hope, is an initial project which aims to lead to a larger project in the future and we also hope that the team is able to leverage off this project to apply for additional external funding.

Two of the other projects (PHIT and Community Nutrition) were highly commended and they may be given access to the remaining funds to work on their ideas, possibly together but, at the time of writing I don’t have the full details to hand.

As all these ideas develop, I hope that the team(s) will keep us all informed by writing for this blog.

I attended the two days of the workshop (apart from the last couple of hours, when I had a meeting that I could not avoid). It was a very good experience and I get the impression that the participants also enjoyed the event. It has led (even in these still early stages) to many benefits and, to mention just a few:

  • Researchers from across our campuses, and from other institutions (University of Reading) and organisations (CFFRC), came together who would not have had that opportunity otherwise.
  • Some of these people will now have the opportunity to work together on a longer term basis.
  • Even if a particular person was not part of the winning team, they still had the opportunity to meet with many other people and, I hope, develop research ideas as well as meet with researchers in other disciplines.
  • We have the opportunity to develop additional research proposals based on the small project(s) that the funds is able to support.
  • It is not possible to fund all the ideas that came out of the sandpit but even ideas which were discarded early on (and never made it to the pitching stage) could lead to future research opportunities.

It would be interesting to hear the views of the sandpit from the participants (please feel free to reply to this blog post) and it would also be interesting to hear from other Schools and external organisations who might be willing to fund/participate in another event such as this.

Once again, thank you to everybody who supported, funded and participated in this event. I believe that it was very worthwhile and I hope that we see positive results over the coming months which, I hope that this blog will disseminate.





Posted in CFFRCFundingWorkshop