Interdisciplinary research consortia aimed at realising societal impact

Increasing interdisciplinarity and real world impact

In 2018 Ghent University reinforced its wish for sustainable investment in interdisciplinary collaboration and societal impact of research by introducing specific research consortia (IDCs) as a sequel to a previous initiative called the Alpha Consortia.

Stage one of this strategy has led to four of these IDCs in the research disciplines of social sciences and humanities (SSH). Stage two will be rolled out early 2019 allowing university-wide applications for a remainder of 6 new IDCs.

The IDCs are funded through the university's own Special Research Fund and have been designated a dedicated research co-ordinator who acts as a knowledge broker and who works in close collaboration with the central Research Department (esp. on impact policy and European public affairs).

SSH Consortia

Henri Pirenne Institute for Medieval Studies (HPIMS)

Henri Pirenne Institute (2018)HPIMS is a cross-disciplinary research & impact consortium that brings together all medievalists at Ghent University. It draws its 100+ members from 4 faculties and 10 departments. The Institute facilitates cross-disciplinary research into the medieval period and advances knowledge exchange both between the different fields of study. Research on original medieval heritage (texts, images, maps, artefacts and sites) is the core business, including the development and integration of Digital Humanities methods. However, HPIMS also houses expertise in collaboration with archives, libraries, museums, and other cultural heritage institutions, as well as with several societal sectors such as education, policy and tourism.

Research co-ordinator: Dr Stefan Meysman

Twitter: @MedievalUGent

Ghent Centre for Global Studies

Logo Global StudiesThis interdisciplinary research platform unites scholars from Social and Economic Geography; International, EU and Conflict & Development Studies; Economics, Sociology, Global History and Ethics; Human Rights Law and Intercultural Pedagogy – a total of 11 research groups from 6 different faculties – around the critical study of globalisation, with special attention to the interaction of global and local processes. With its interdisciplinary research (on inter alia urbanization, rural transformations, economic governance and migration) and education, the Centre wishes to contribute to the societal debate on, and evidence-based policy-making and development cooperation for, sustainable development.

Research co-ordinator: Dr Julie Carlier

Crime, Criminology and Criminal Policy (CCCP)

Logo CCCPThe IDC ‘Crime, Criminology & Criminal Policy’ brings together 16 scholars from different disciplines in six departments working inter-disciplinary on security, crime and deviance related topics in local, national, European and international contexts. Research topics cover among others complex cross-border crimes such as cybercrime, terrorism and organized crime but also privacy, information exchange, big data, law enforcement responses, policies and laws. The consortium fosters knowledge translation and exchange, strengthening societal value creation leading to societal impact and stimulates synergies and cooperation with external academic, policy and practice partners from different SSH and STEMM disciplines.

Research co-ordinator: Dr Noel Klima

Twitter: @CCCP_UGent

PSYNC: working together for mental health

Logo PSYNCPSYNC is a consortium dedicated to improving the mental health of all citizens, running research projects in close collaboration with diverse stakeholder groups, with a clear focus on generating real world impact and providing societal innovation. PSYNC’s main goals are reaching vulnerable groups, stressing the importance of lifecycle perspective on mental health, increasing mental health literacy and health promotion, safeguarding ethical perspectives, and developing innovations in the treatment of mental health disorders.

Research co-ordinator: Dr Alexis Dewaele

Twitter: @alexisdewaele

More information

Esther De Smet - Research Department