Putting somatosensation in context: exploring the cortical encoding of active touch


  • Dr James Kolasinski

    Cardiff University, United Kingdom

Project summary

Gwyddoniaeth wrth y tân (Fireside Science) aims to promote open dialogue and mutual understanding between non-clinical NHS staff and academic scientists in Wales. Welsh NHS staff are a vital link between the kind of projects funded by Wellcome and translational outcomes in the clinic. However, the 37,000 non-clinical Welsh NHS staff are not directly involved in research and may question any investment therein when the NHS is under-resourced.

This project draws on the traditional Welsh culture of storytelling, using it as a means to facilitate conversations between non-clinical NHS staff and scientists about their working lives. A 2-day workshop for 20 scientists and NHS staff will teach transferable communication and storytelling skills. The workshop will culminate with 20 short 10-minute conversational recordings between, a scientist and a member of NHS staff.

Audio content will be disseminated via three routes: for time-poor NHS staff, podcasts will be available to the general public on standard podcast platforms, promoted via NHS newsletters and targeted social media. Audio recordings will also be released to the Welsh Community Radio Network. Finally, audio recordings will be used in a travelling installation hosted in hospital atria and National Museum sites across Wales. The installation will be themed around a traditional Welsh miner?s front room, with two armchairs using speakers in the headrests to deliver audio, alongside a fireplace and a lamp. The concept will engage NHS staff with human stories about science and healthcare in Wales in a comfortable and welcoming environment.