One of our major programmes of work currently ongoing is designed to support the University’s research activity. We call this work the ‘Research Digital Developments Roadmap’ and it aims to improve the digital presence of all staff, centres, groups and departments involved in research.
There are six key projects covered by our roadmap – each one is based on activity that will deliver university-wide benefits, ensuring academics across the campus gain from our work.
Here’s what we’ve got planned:
1. Departmental research pages
We’re redesigning departmental research pages to include a vibrant landing page and new case studies which highlight the impact of our research on people and places across the world. This project will ensure department strengths and specialisms are clearly signposted with navigation for those who want to delve deeper into particular areas of interest.
Read more about our progress so far
2. Web page templates for research centres and groups
We’re developing templates for research entity web pages which will ensure content is optimised for viewing on desktops and mobile devices. Guidance will be provided on how to use the templates.
3. A new template for academic staff profiles
We’re in the early development stages of this project working with academics and the PURE team to find out what our academic staff want from a profile page – and what they currently use the pages for. We’re also looking at staff profile pages at other universities to see what we can learn. The aim is to have a prototype page ready in the next few weeks.
4. Centralised news listings
The fourth destination on our roadmap is a project to develop a centralised list of all our news stories and press releases.
We think this will have two significant benefits:
- While it’s currently a manual process to copy a story over from the central news pages to a departmental news section, the new setup would help us to automatically push a central news article (rather than a duplicate page) straight to a department’s news listing and any other appropriate sections of the website.
- Departmental news stories could reach a wider audience by also being selected to appear on the central news pages, helping us to present a much fuller picture of all the exciting activity happening on campus.
5. PhD opportunities
We’re also working with departments to highlight their PhD opportunities via the popular FindaPhD website. Our FindAPhD package includes:
- an Institutional profile page
- research programme pages for arts and humanities, and social science subjects, for example Music
- single defined project credits with the functionality to embed these on departmental web pages, for example Biology.
6. Centralised event listings
Our final roadmap project aims to develop a centralised events listing which will work in a similar way to the centralised news listing (see project 4, above) by enabling details about forthcoming events to be stored centrally but published in multiple locations.
Approved by the University Research Committee, our roadmap projects mark a clear new direction and commitment to research communications at York. Over the next few months, we’ll keep you updated on progress via this blog.