What is REAlab?

REALAB with strapline

REALab provides a platform for interdisciplinary teams of PhD and Early Career (2 years from PhD award) researchers and cultural partners to collaborate in producing projects that contribute to social wealth and the distribution of knowledge beyond academia. We do this by i) offering researchers funded opportunities for high-quality professional skill training in project design and management, research consultancy and stakeholder engagement ii) providing partner organisations with access to multidisciplinary research expertise tailored to their aims iii) offering researchers the opportunity to team up to work on a project or a partner of their own choice.

Partners are invited to identify specific challenges or desired outcomes to which a dedicated Researcher Team will respond by ideating solutions. REALab offers Partners the opportunity for bespoke researcher interventions to strategically enhance their existing programming or develop new areas of interest (e.g. accessibility/engagement for particular groups of audience, tailored research, digital development and so on). We are particularly keen to support multidisciplinary projects that call for interventions across different disciplines and fields of expertise and that include elements of co-production, creativity and collaboration.

Researchers receive rigorous training to professionally manage research consultancy projects and to boost their post-PhD employability. The programme will suit both those who are looking to move to the industry after the PhD and want to develop transferable skills through practice, and those who want to stay in academia and develop a profile attuned to a current agenda in which knowledge exchange, impact and engagement have explicitly become attributes of what it means to produce excellent research today. REAlab offers a comprehensive scheme through which researchers can receive high-quality professional training, develop research into ideas and establish productive partnerships and professional synergies both with academic colleagues and industry partners in the North West and beyond.

In 2018 REAlab is supported by the North West Consortium DTP, offering two main streams of funded opportunities:

  1. engagement projects in response to our partners’ challenges
  2. researcher-led projects.

In addition to the £1000 team award, successful applicants will have access to tailored professional training in project design and consultancy skills over four sessions within a friendly, cross-disciplinary and trans-institutional environment and benefit from tailored mentoring until project completion. 

Follow the links above for specific information on each strand. For any other query you can write to realab@manchester.ac.uk. We will be happy to hear from you!

Please note that REAlab 2018 is a programme funded by the NWCDTP but open to all doctoral and post-doctoral researchers based at/graduated from the institutions that are part of the consortium (Manchester, MMU, RNCM, Salford, Keele, Liverpool, Lancaster).