UK Digital Economy Crucible

What is the UK Digital Economy Crucible?

UK Digital Economy Crucible is one of the integral project outputs of CHERISH-DE. As the project enables facilitation of innovative interdisciplinary projects within Swansea, UK Digital Economy Crucible reaches out to outstanding Early Career Researchers (ECRs) from across all UK universities. Over the life of the project, UK Digital Economy Crucible seeks to build and provide leadership to a vibrant UK network of at least 100 ECRs who will bring their diverse expertise in addressing common human challenges, and become change agents in shaping future products, services and policies. UK Digital Economy Crucible is a UK-wide, multi-disciplinary leadership programme developed by the Centre at Swansea University for ECRs to develop career-altering skills surrounding digital economy research, network and collaborate to achieve societal impact and economic gain. Crucible, in general, provides an exclusive development opportunity for aspiring young academics to understand the wider context in which they work and to develop a broader perspective of themselves, how they might progress within their longer-term career and, in particular, build a strengthened network for work-related collaboration and peer support. Participants are challenged to become collaborative ‘outward-facing’ researchers who seek opportunities to engage and have greater impact (NESTA, 2014). The leadership programme offers a series of residential-based skills labs, held across four cities in the UK to provide exclusive opportunity to interact with crucial actors of digital economy such as industry, media, research councils and parliament. There are 25 places available for 2018.

Dates and locations for UK Digital Economy Crucible 2018 are as below:
  • 17-18 May in Swansea
  • 14-15 June in Edinburgh
  • 26-27 July in London
  • 1-2 November in Cardiff (Alumni Event)
The participants can look forward to the following exciting programme at the skills labs and gathering:

Swansea skills lab will focus on Insight. It will provide an in-depth understanding of digital economy and leadership, and offer an exclusive platform to interact with media (BBC, Channel 4, The Conversation, and the Wired (tbc)), and funding bodies (EPSRC, ESRC, AHRC, Wellcome Trust and Home Office).
Edinburgh skills lab will emphasise on Collaboration where the participants will start to work together and interact with household industry names (Microsoft, NHS, Amazon, DVLA, BBC R&D, Facebook, and Google & Twitter (tbc) to address industry challenges, engage in an intensive proposal writing workshop and hear about how to put together a winning proposal through teamwork. The last skills lab in London will work on achieving Impact. The participants will interact with digital entrepreneur and social digital activist, learn how to feed into policy making at Parliament level through POST, get practical insight into achieving real impact through proven inter-disciplinary work from highly successful senior academics, build resilience as an ECR, and finally participate in a Dragon’s Den-style pitching for an exclusive research seedcorn funding. At the Alumni gathering, which is a crucial part of the leadership programme, we’ll have a catch-up in a much more relaxed environment. We’ll discuss what the participants have been up to since the last skills lab – their achievements and challenges, discuss emerging opportunities for collaborations, undertake a team bonding outing and foster a sense of common goal within the Digital Economy Researcher community. We also provide additional seedcorn research funding at the gathering.

So, how will UK Digital Economy Crucible benefit you?

UK Digital Economy Crucible will enable you to:
  • explore the advantage of working with researchers in other disciplines
  • understand how your research can have greater impact
  • develop a network of peers within the research community
  • introduce you to creative and innovative thinking and improve your effectiveness both within and beyond your organisation
  • develop skills in engagement with public, media, and parliament
  • discover how you can interact more effectively with industry
  • strengthen knowledge on how you can build international research careers
Application Form & Eligibility Information