Postgraduate research has faced some significant hurdles during these unprecedented times. But has the global pandemic brought opportunities to research that would not otherwise have presented themselves? Has the challenge of Covid-19 opened doors and triggered novel ways of working?
KESS 2 has launched an initiative to capture and share participants’ experiences during the Covid-19 pandemic from across Wales. These stories aim to shine a light on what disruptions may have been caused, how participants have overcome the challenges and if new opportunities have surfaced as a result. In his recent case study with KESS 2, Bangor University student Andrew Rogers says,
“[I have been] using the Wellbeing of Future Generations Act as a visioning tool and framework for development [during the research], and an exciting project has developed which was already promising to provide a new blueprint for wellbeing services. However, since Covid 19 has provided such a challenge to the way most services are delivered, it is now already becoming an inspiring vision of the changes that will need to be made across existing health, social care and wider public services.
The Covid 19 pandemic from my perspective hasn’t got in the way of this, it has just made it even more important.”
Prof Paul Brocklehurst, Professor in Health Services Research at Bangor and KESS 2 academic supervisor for Andrew’s project adds,
“Developing an understanding of how different community development programmes work is key to a public health approach that empowers the people of North Wales. Andrew’s realist evaluation will seek to describe ‘what works, for whom, how, why and in what circumstances. Given the advent of COVID-19, it will also explore the impact of the pandemic and how different programmes have adapted to this challenge, drawing out the key elements that facilitate community development, to help strengthen future initiatives to improve health across Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board”
A collection of stories will be published online over time as the pandemic continues and will take the format of written, audio and video responses from KESS 2 participants. To stay up to date, keep an eye on the Covid Chronicles category on the KESS 2 website and follow @KESS_Central on Twitter.
KESS 2 are keen to collect many more stories relating to postgraduate research during the pandemic. If you are a KESS 2 participant and would like to contribute your story, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on how to take part.