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Solent University’s four research hubs work on a wide range of research projects and academic collaborations. This research is used to inform teaching, enhance the student experience and improve academic understanding around the world.

Sport, health and wellbeing research

The sport, health and wellbeing research and innovation hub specialises in producing actionable research within areas including football, sport sciences, fitness, exercise, psychology and social care.

Confident Carers

Confident Carers is one of the current projects undertaken by researchers in the hub. It is funded by the Innovation and Wealth Creation Accelerator Fund. This is a scoping project in collaboration with Southampton University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (UHSFT) which works to develop a local training hub providing information and peer-support interventions to carers which is accessible and taking into account their responsibilities and needs.

The Confident Carers project gathered information for quantitative analysis through structured interviews on site at the UHSFT focusing on the Acute Medical Unit and Medicine for Older People. The interviews sought to ascertain the level of support carers felt were needed and which topics would be most beneficial in a carers’ educational programme.

The project also held semi-structured interviews with health professionals to garner ideas and suggestions in response to carers identified needs. The study’s partners intend to develop mechanisms to support the growth of confidence in carers and thereby promote the health and wellbeing of both carers and those being cared for as a long-term community impact.

Maritime, technology and environment research

The maritime, technology and environment research and innovation hub specialises in producing actionable research within the areas of shipping, boat building, environmental sciences, international maritime trade, electronic engineering, architecture, and architectural technology.

Mentoring Seafarers Project

The Mentoring Seafarers Project will explore current mentoring initiatives employed by shipping companies internationally. It will also raise awareness of sustainable mentoring initiatives and encourage best practice to ensure long-term benefits for the education and wellbeing of seafarers.

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Ports Energy and Carbon Savings (PECS) Project

The PECS project is an Interreg 2 Seas project under the programme priority "Low carbon technologies". The project will investigate tools and technologies to reduce the carbon footprint of small- and medium-sized entrepreneurial ports and marinas with a view to enabling them to function in a more energy-efficient and cost-effective way.

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Project Sea Traffic Management

The project is aiming to connect the maritime world in real time, enabling seafarers and those working ashore to make decisions based on real-time information, creating a more efficient and environmentally friendly maritime sector. Warsash Maritime Academy/Solent University is the only UK participant.

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The Effective Crew Project

The Effective Crew Project is a two-year research project led by Solent University in partnership with NJC Associates and Impact Crew. The research aims to examine the perceived benefits associated with the implementation of either a stable or fluid crewing strategy to Merchant Navy vessels. The project will utilise findings collected as part of a pilot study into this research area conducted by the three organisations in 2016. The Effective Crew Project commenced in April 2017.

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Seafarers' Welfare in Chinese Ports (SWiC) Project

The SWiC Project will explore and examine the the availability and adequacy of welfare provisions for ocean-going seafarers when their ships call at Chinese ports. Particular attention will be paid to the seafarers' perspectives.

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Project IMAGINE: innovation in marine engineering diagnostics and feedback

Project IMAGINE badgeSolent University and Rolls-Royce have launched a collaborative research and development project to support the unmanned and partially autonomous operation of marine vessels. Running from Autumn 2016 to Spring 2018, the focus will be on applying immersive technologies to enable the engineering crew to perform typical duties required for continuous vessel operation at a remote location rather than in situ. Rolls-Royce are eager to take advantage of the breadth of expertise the the University offers, including marine engineering, high-fidelity simulation, human factors and virtual reality. IMAGINE has links with Rolls-Royce in the UK, Singapore and the Nordics.

IMAGINE is supported by a strong team of staff from across the University, as well as the future technologies group from the Rolls-Royce Derby office. The project team is led by Solent University senior lecturer, Gordon Meadow as principal investigator, and co-investigator, Professor Chris Barlow. Project research assistants include Dr Tychonas Michailidis, Dr Sara Braganca, Louis Arrigoni and Emma Broadhurst. Senior lecturers in marine engineering, John Gouch, Sam Samuels and Paul Jackson also bring their vast range of expertise to the project. Finally, the project is supported by a number of in-house consultants, as well as two technical members of staff, Dave Kemp and Charlie Stoodley.

Project MAXCMAS: MAchine eXecutable Collision regulations for Marine Autonomous Systems

MAXCMAS is an Innovate UK £1.27 million-funded multi-partner project. The consortium for the project includes Rolls Royce as lead co-ordinator; Atlas Electronic UK, a defence company; Lloyds Register, a leading safety assurance organisation; Queens University, Belfast; and Solent University's Warsash Maritime Academy as academic partners. The project commenced in August 2015 and will conclude in the autumn of 2017.

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The three-year MARTHA research project into seafarer fatigue concluded in 2016, and the final report was presented to delegates at the IMO's human element, training and watchkeeping committee on 30 January 2017. The study found that fatigue can result in long-term physical and mental health issues and individual motivation decreases over the length of the voyage. It also highlighted that night watchkeepers get significantly less total sleep than others onboard, and that Masters suffer more stress and fatigue than their crews.

Data was collected from the results of questionnaires and interviews of 1,000 international seafarers, and 100 volunteer crew members operating on vessels worldwide during their tours of duty. 

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The GEM project

This research project, led by Solent in collaboration with the University of Greenwich and the China Maritime Centre, aims to examine seafarers’ welfare. It focuses on gender issues that arise from multi-cultural crews and isolation, and looks to develop appropriate tools that can help support women within the maritime industry.

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Business and society research

The business and society research and innovation hub specialises in providing actionable research within the areas of management, law and order, cyber crime, drug use, marketing and trade. 

Perceptions of gang culture

A research investigation into children’s and young people’s perceptions and experiences of peer group or ‘gang’ activities in the City of Southampton, commissioned by Hampshire Police and Southampton City Council (2014)

Creative and digital industries research

The creative and digital industries research and innovation hub specialises in providing actionable research within the areas of fine art, fashion, illustration, photography, media production, broadcasting and beauty.

Read on to find out more about recent research projects that the hub has been involved with:

The Trans National Creative Exchange

The Trans National Creative Exchange (TNCE) is funded by Creative Europe Cooperation project and led by members of the creative and digital industries research and innovation hub. It brings together international partners including Solent Showcase Gallery, Cork Institute of Technology, Wandesford Quay Gallery, The Hague University of Applied Science, Rencontre Audiovisuelles and the China Academy of Art/Shanghai Institute of Design/Sino British Design Centre.

The exchange provides an international platform for emerging creative talent from Europe and China - encouraging partnerships, experimentation and growth. It fosters both professional practitioners and students in the development and internationalisation of their careers.

The TNCE project is working to produce 6 interdisciplinary outputs, including touring exhibits, conferences on internationalisation of careers and creating a virtual exhibit product.

The TNCE places strong emphasis on innovation in digital products to both share the work of members and reach new audiences. Over the course of the project these innovative ideas will be tested and evaluative research will be undertaken to monitor success and identify policy development.

Arts and Humanities Research Council: Research in Film Awards

The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Research in Film Awards are designed to showcase, reward and recognise the best of the large and increasing number of high-quality short films produced as outputs or by-products of arts and humanities research. Senior lecturer Julian Konczak's film 'A Polish Journey' has been shortlisted for an 'Innovation in Film' Award.

The awards recognise the creative and innovative work being undertaken at the interface between research and film by world-leading researchers and practitioners and filmmakers in the UK arts and humanities research community.

Watch A Polish Journey

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