2019 Winners of the Stephen Fry Awards

A photograph of the 2019 Stephen Fry Award winners for Excellence in Public Engagement with Research (Left to right)Prof Niamh Nic Daeid, Prof Annie Anderson and Prof Bob Steele.

Congratulations to Professor Niamh Nic Daeid (Engaged Researcher of the Year) and Professors Annie Anderson and Bob Steele (Engagement Project of the Year) for their well-deserved awards. They were presented with their awards by the Principal at Discovery Days 2019.

2019 Commendations

Commendations were awarded in both categories in the 2019 Stephen Fry Awards. The work described in these applications excelled at engaging audiences with the University's research.

Project of the Year

  • Argumentation technology and the BBC - Prof Chris Reed and colleagues
  • Dundee Parkinson's Research Group - Dr Esther Sammler and colleagues

Engaged Researcher of the Year

  • Dr Husam alWaer
  • Dr Rolf Black
  • Dr Carolina Kuepper-Tetzel

Selection Panel in 2019

Panel members represent the University, our cultural partners and our local community.

Janice Aitken - School of Art and Design, University of Dundee;

Avon Bartlett - Community Representative;

Simon Reynolds - Science Learning Manager, Dundee Science Centre;

Prof John Rowan - University of Dundee;

Dr Jon Urch (Chair) - External Relations, University of Dundee.

Contact Us

If you have any questions or comments about the Stephen Fry Awards please contact Dr Jon Urch at engage@dundee.ac.uk or phone 01382 386669.

 

2018 Winners of the Stephen Fry Awards

The 2018 Public Engagement Project of the Year was won by Hands of X, a collaboration that designs made-to-order prosthetic hands in a range of materials and colours according to the wearers’ preference. The team included Dr Graham Pullin, Dr Andrew Cook and Eddie Small from the University, as well as colleagues from other organisations.

Dr Daniel Cook, of the University’s English department, has been named Engaged Researcher of the Year. The award recognises the role he has played in bringing the works of Mary Shelley, H.G.Wells and Jonathan Swift to life for new audiences in Dundee as part of the national Being Human Festival.

Professor Sir Pete Downes (Left), Principal and Vice-Chancellor, presents the 2018 Stephen Fry Engagement Project of the Year award to Hands of X team members Andrew Cook (centre) and Dr Graham Pullin (right).

Stephen Fry, the comedian, actor, writer, broadcaster and activist who served two terms as Rector of the University, congratulated the winners in an audio recording that was played when they received their awards.

‌Hands of X explores radical material choices in prosthetic hands. The project is anchored by two important values. Firstly, that any activity relating to disabled people must involve them as participants, on equal terms. And secondly that it should challenge simplistic and polarised ideas around prosthetics. The prototype hands designed by the team are on display in the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Museum in New York until September 2018, with a touring exhibition planned to follow.

Prof Sir Pete Downes, Principal and Vice-Chancellor presents the 2018 Stephen Fry Award for Engaged Researcher of the Year to Dr Daniel Cook (right).

Dr Cook has helped established Dundee as a successful model of creative and critical interaction with the Humanities. His work led to Dundee becoming Scotland’s first hub for Being Human in 2016 and 2017. This was largely achieved as a result of Dr Cook’s eagerness to forge partnerships across different disciplines and with external partners to bring fresh perspectives to the study of literature.

2018 Commendations

Commendations were awarded in both categories in the 2018 Stephen Fry Awards. The work described in these applications excelled at engaging audiences with the University's research.

Project of the Year

  • Ardler Inventors project - Dr Nick Taylor and colleagues
  • Argumentation technology and the BBC - Prof Chris Reed and colleagues
  • Atopic Art - Prof Sara Brown and colleagues
  • Centenary of Growth and Form - Matthew Jarron and colleagues
  • Smoke Alarms - Prof Niamh Nic Daeid and colleagues

Engaged Researcher of the Year

  • Prof Sara Brown
  • Prof Calum Colvin
  • Prof Nicola Stanley-Wall

Selection Panel in 2018

Members of the 2018 Stephen Fry Awards selection panel are leaders in local cultural, learning and engagement organisations.

Prof Jan Clarkson - School of Dentistry, University of Dundee;

Billy Gartley - Head of Cultural Services, Leisure and Culture Dundee;

Chloe Goodall - Children's University Manager - Dundee and Fife;

Rebecca Erskine - Exhibition and Community Engagement Manager, Dundee Science Centre

Prof John Rowan - University of Dundee;

Dr Jon Urch (Chair) - External Relations, University of Dundee.

 

2017 Stephen Fry Awards

Winners of the Public Engagement Project of the Year - Growing Up On the Streets

Prof Sir Pete Downes awards the 2017 Stephen Fry Awards for Public Engagement Project of the Year to Prof Lorraine van Blerk and Janine Hunter from the Growing Up on the Streets projectGrowing up on the Streets a participatory research project that seeks to improve the lives of vulnerable and marginalised street children and youth. The team worked with hundreds of street children and youth in three African cities, Accra, Bukavu and Harare. The research at the heart of the project aims to understand youth’s capabilities on the street in their daily lives, to improve policies and practices that transform the lives of street children. Led by Prof Lorraine van Blerk, the team members are Dr Wayne Shand, Janine Hunter and three project managers in Ghana, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Zimbabwe.

A key success has been the engagement of street children and youth in the consultation for the United Nations General Comment on Children in Street Situations. Supported by the project street children and youth shared their own findings from the research with confidence, in order that the General Comment would be founded on their experiences and needs. This new UN law will have a profound impact on how street children are perceived and treated worldwide.

Projects commended for their work. Being Human led by Dr Daniel Cook and Outer Space, Inner Space a collaboration between Computing, the School of Life Sciences and the Mills Observatory.

Engaged Researcher of the Year - Prof Jennifer Woof, School of Life Sciences

Prof Jenny Woof delivers a presentation describing her award-winning Public Engagement work.Jenny’s outstanding work with schools and the public have inspired new audiences and raised awareness of immunology, her area of expertise. Her leadership and boundless energy helps to share the latest scientific studies from her own research and the research of others at the University. The selection panel were impressed by the planning and development processes that Jenny uses to continuously improve and enhance the University’s science engagement activities.

Jenny is breaking new ground in public engagement; by developing activities, effectively evaluating, and sharing her methods and successes widely.

Commended for their commitment to public engagement: Valerie Bentivegna, Dr David Foley and Prof Murdo Macdonald.

 

Selection Panel in 2017

Dr Jon Urch, Public Engagement Co-ordinator, University of Dundee - Chair

Prof Newman, former Vice-Principal (Research, Knowledge Exchange and Wider Impact), University of Dundee

Jennifer Smith, Outreach and Public Engagement Network Co-ordinator, Abertay University

Michael Marra, Leverhulme Research Centre for Forensic Science and Deputy Director Design in Action

2016 - Great War Dundee project - Winners of the Stephen Fry Award

The Great War Dundee project was awarded the 2016 Stephen Fry Award at Discovery Day 2016. University of Dundee historians Dr Billy Kenefick and Dr Derek Patrick co-founded the Great War Dundee project and, alongside partner groups, are coordinating the city-wide approach to commemorate the conflict. Their research has led to startling discoveries about Dundee’s contribution to the war effort as well as a greater understanding of the conflict’s impact and legacy in the city.

Dr Billy Kenefick, Dr Derek Patrick and their colleagues Caroline Brown from Matthew Jarron from Museum and Archive Services, worked tirelessly to share the research results to a wide audience across Scotland.

Listen to Stephen Fry introduced the award-winners with his witty and thoughtful address. You can also watch the Great War Dundee's presentation after receiving the award.

2015 - Two winners of the Stephen Fry Award

In 2015 the University of Dundee decided to bestow two Stephen Fry Award for Excellence in Public Engagement with Research. The winners were the Five Million Questions project, which brought leading politicians to account in front of large audiences in Scotland and across the World though a huge media presence. And FIRST (Fatality Investigation and Review Studies), a project that organises multi-agency case reviews of child deaths and takes measures to reduce future incidents.

2014 - Neuroscientist and bee researcher wins Stephen Fry Award

The University of Dundee's Stephen Fry Award for Excellence in Public Engagement with Research 2014 has been won by a neuroscientist who has significantly enhanced Dr Chris Connolly and Prof Sir Pete Downes, from left to right.
our knowledge of the threats faced by the world's bee populations.

Dr Christopher Connolly, a Reader in the Division of Neuroscience at the School of Medicine, has received his award during the University's annual Discovery Days event on Friday 10th January 2014. The accolade recognises his role in working with external stakeholders during the course of his research as well as the enthusiasm he has displayed in disseminating the results to the public.

Chris investigates the chemistry behind nerve activity and the ability of the brain to adapt to our different physical and social environments. This has led to work exploring how alterations in nerve cells can relate to chronic neurological conditions, in both humans and insects. His recent research has focussed on bees and other pollinators that make an estimated contribution of 216 billion dollars to worldwide economies every year. They are essential for the production of much of the World's food.

Stephen Fry sent his own personal message to Chris,

“Many, many congratulations to all those whose work came under consideration for the 2014 Stephen Fry Award.

I am particularly delighted that Christopher Connolly’s work is, firstly on an urgent subject that affects the entire food chain. Indeed there are articles in several a papers on the subject as I write this today. But secondly that he is the kind of scientist prepared to go out and discuss his findings, able to explain the qualities of proper scientific research that underpin his work and connect with all interested parties. This is the kind of work that advances human outcomes in the real world,

Many, many congratulations, Chris. Dundee is very proud if you. Jute, Jam, HONEY and Journalism...

Signed S Fry”

2013 - The In Memoriam team are winners of the 2nd Annual Stephen Fry Award

The University of Dundee’s Stephen Fry Award for Excellence in Public Engagement with Research 2013 has been won by the team behind an anthology celebrating the people who donate their bodies to science when they die.‌‌Prof Calum Colvin and Eddie Small, University of Dundee (from left to right).

‘In Memoriam’ celebrates the “silent teachers” whose remarkable gesture helps to train the next generation of doctors, scientists, dentists and surgeons. The book features work from renowned artists and writers, who collaborated with staff and students at the University to create the publication.

The project was driven by Calum Colvin, Eddie Small, Anna Day and Kirsty Gunn. The team received the award, named after the former University Rector who retains strong links with Dundee, during the annual Discovery Day event on Friday 11th January.

The project drew on the research and expertise of Professor Sue Black and her team at the Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification (CAHID). They are creating new mortuary facilities to accommodate Thiel embalming and are set to become the first University in the UK to exclusively adopt this method.

2012 - Two winners of the first Stephen Fry Award

On Friday 13th January 2012 the University of Dundee was delighted to announce the winners of the first Stephen Fry Award ‌ for Excellence in Public Engagement with Research.

This annual award recognises the work of our outstanding communicators in improving understanding of the research and practice of the University to a wider audience. The winners received a trophy and £1500 prize money to use towards their future communication activities.

The Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification were awarded the 2012 Stephen Fry Award for Excellence in Public Engagement with Research.

Prof. Charles McKean, from the School of Humanities was awarded an Honorary Stephen Fry Award for his life time achievements in engaging the public with his research in Scottish architectural history.

Dr Karen Petrie from the School of Computing was also awarded a certificate in recognition of her highly commended public engagement work.