In my previous post, I wrote that we were ready to ask the questions but I was worried no one would want to answer.
Well, I needn’t have been concerned. We’ve completed 14 semi-structured interviews and have two more to do. We have written up the interviews we’ve done as draft case studies and I am just sorting out the process of getting the interviews transcribed.
We have reached Phase 2 of our seed funded impact project; on time and budget. (Have a look at my previous post for an overview of Phase 1.) This progress is very pleasing for all the obvious reasons but also because it has been fairly straightforward so far. In our mini-team, we identified appropriate sites and site managers to target with our first phase of requests for interviews. We also had a good round of emails working out which questions to ask and in what order. We got ethical approval from the university and set out the email that we would send to interviewees to explain the background to the project. And we have now invited our first phase of interviewees.
The Floodplain Meadows Partnership is a research project based on key academic work carried out at the Open University by Professor David Gowing and others on the response of species-rich floodplain meadows to changes in management, particularly hydrological changes. The partnership recently received an Evidencing Engaged Research seed funding award to look at the impact that advice from the project has had on site managers and sites across the UK.
An award-winning, externally-facing partnership with research at the core
I don’t think of myself as an academic. Before I took on my current role as an Outreach Coordinator within the award-winning Floodplain Meadows research team at the Open University I’d worked for 12 years for the Environment Agency, delivering policy, legislation and proactive conservation projects ‘on the ground’ in Dorset, Wiltshire and a little bit of Hampshire. I’d worked with a wide range of conservation and community partners, occasionally getting cross with flood defence engineers. In short, I came to this job for a change!