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Dr Lauren Tuckerman at the NARTI Engaged Scholarship Mini Conference, Leeds

On the 19th and 20th of January I attended the NARTI Engaged Scholarship Mini Conference at the University of Leeds as an early career researcher delegate. The conference was hosted by Dr Deema Refai, Professor Nick Williams, and the Centre for Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Studies.

by Dr Lauren Tuckerman (Innovation Caucus Co-I)

The first day featured speakers with extensive experience of engaged scholarship, giving the early career researchers and postgraduate researcher students in the delegation insight and understanding of the ethical dilemmas of this kind of research approach, designing good research questions for engaged scholarship, working with communities, advancing scholarly enquiry, practising engaged scholarship, and avoiding the pitfalls. Professor Monder Ram, who is an Innovation Caucus member, presented how he created relationships with partnering organisations to co-create research programmes for the benefit of both parties. These inspiring short talks encouraged reflection, and created food for thought for the new researchers.

Day two provided an opportunity to hear from journal editors about the opportunities to published engaged scholarship in high quality entrepreneurship journals. We heard about the common issues of finding fit in the right journal, and the need to pursue papers that challenge conventional thinking and advance theory. The editors provided great insight into their ambitions for supporting early career researchers to publish their work, for example the International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation’s  Fresh Perspectives Research Notes which are short pieces, fully peer reviewed, but which must be first authored by an early career or postgraduate student. 

I was excited to be one of seven postgraduate researchers and early career researchers to be invited to give a short pitch on my paper. I presented a work in progress paper entitled “Open Academics in the Business School:Using entrepreneurial skills and mindsets to create porous organisational boundaries”. In the paper we argue that engaged scholars breakdown institutional boundaries using entrepreneurial skill sets. I was delighted to be awarded one of two prizes for the best paper award, particularly since the quality of pitches was high, with topics from entrepreneurial ecosystems, indigenous entrepreneurship, informal entrepreneurship, refugee entrepreneurship, entrepreneurship education for young children, to entrepreneurial learning in women. All early career researchers were then matched with senior academics experienced in publishing to get direct feedback on their paper ideas.

The award for best pitches was mentorship from the International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation editorial team, and an expedited review process. I have already met with Dr Alex Kevill and I am excited about developing the next stage of the paper. Watch this space!