University wins gold for 'Raising Research'
Press release issued: 15 April 2003
Bristol University has won a gold award for its campaign to tell the public about research being done at the University.
University's 'Raising Research' campaign came top of the Public Relations category in the annual Heist Awards, sponsored by the Guardian. The competition celebrates excellence in the marketing of universities and colleges and this year attracted 197 entries.
Bristol University's campaign was started by Bristol businessman, Arnold Denman, who felt that the University was not very good at communicating to the public the fantastic research that goes on in its many departments. In order to change all that he agreed to sponsor a Research Publicity Officer's post for two years.
Cherry Lewis, who has held the post for just over a year, said: 'So much remarkable research goes on at this University and the public are really interested to hear about it - it's just a matter of getting the two together. Winning the gold was a real boost to our campaign - rather like getting an Oscar!'
The Heist judges made it clear that they would be looking at whether goals had been set and achieved, and whether the results were measurable. They said of Bristol's entry: 'We were very impressed by this campaign. Well-organised and executed with clear objectives, it represents a strong team effort by staff working together to achieve the aim of raising the profile of Bristol's research achievements and how they impact upon the general public. With increased competition for research funding, Bristol's campaign is a model for others.'
The judges particularly liked the University's efforts to send academics into the community to talk about their research in shopping centres and local businesses.
Others whose contributions were an important factor in the campaign's success were design companies Totem and CW Design.
Bristol University's magazine 're:search' highlights research done at the University and presents it in an accessible, easy-to-read format. Copies are available online at: www.bris.ac.uk/university/publications/research