The latest thinking on international development from leading academics will be shared online via podcasts and videos as part of a new initiative.
Access to medicine, education, food and clean water are some of the areas to be showcased as part of the 15-month Jisc project, called the Bloomsbury Media Cloud.
Interviews and lectures will be produced and made publicly available online to raise awareness of major challenges in developing countries, including animal health, climate change and education. The resources will be of particular interest to international development researchers and students worldwide.
The initiative is led by the Bloomsbury Colleges – a consortium of six internationally-renowned institutions within the University of London.
Alex Hawker, programme manager at Jisc, said, “I am especially enthusiastic about this project and the opportunities it will bring for universities to learn from each other, particularly in the areas of negotiating licences for shared resources, and joint leadership. By making this important work openly accessible online, Jisc is allowing researchers to benefit from academic thought outside the walls of their own universities and subject areas.”
Professor Quintin McKellar, principal of the Royal Veterinary College which is participating, said, “International development issues increasingly impact on all of our lives, from climate change to the threat of diseases like swine flu. Online resources are an effective and appealing way of engaging new audiences and informing them about these matters in a clear and concise way. We are delighted to have secured funding for this project from Jisc.”
Innovative internet-based approaches are central to the Bloomsbury Media Cloud project including the storage of digital resources in 'the cloud' (a virtual space online).
The project is being undertaken in collaboration with the London International Development Centre, which promotes interdisciplinary research and training to tackle complex problems by bringing together different scientists from across the consortium.
The initiative is supported by Jisc's new programme to help colleges and universities make efficiency savings by integrating and sharing their information systems effectively.