X-Net is a training network which connects researchers in biomedicine, mathematics and computational science to improve interdisciplinary research. The network is particularly trying to uncover and overcome barriers to effective interdisciplinary medical research.
As part of this work they wanted to hear from members of the public so that they could gather different persepctives and understand why this work is important. Participants were recruited from existing PPI (patient and public involvement) groups at the University of Dundee and the University of Edinburgh.
The participants were invited to draw on their own life experiences to suggest ways over overcoming barriers to collaboration. After introductions and an icebreaker activity, the workshop was structured to allow participants to discuss the topics openly in breakout rooms and contribute anonymously. Contributions were gathered via the online noticeboard Padlet.
My role was to plan the workshop with Cristina, create the Powerpoint slides and activities, then host and facilitate on the day, and finally to analyse the submissions and produce a report afterwards.
Reflecting on the workshop Cristina said “Sarah’s role as the facilitator of the PPI workshop organised by X-Net was flawless. Sarah was responsible for planning and setting up activities, running the workshop, analysing the results and writing a comprehensive report summarising the main findings. Her communication skills, together with the engaging activities she designed, enabled the contributors (a very diverse group of people) to establish discussions, building on their own knowledge from their personal background and professional experiences. This was the main goal of the event, which was impeccably achieved.”