NTDC Technician Development Fund 2023 - Winners Announced!

16 March 2023

Congratulations to the 2023 NTDC Technician Development Fund Winners.

The NTDC Technician Development Fund (TDF) is one of many member benefits for Partner Affiliates (PAs). The Technician Development Fund provides technical staff with an opportunity to access funding to support innovative technical initiatives. The National Technician Development Centre is pleased to announce the winners of the 2023 round of funding!

Promoting technical careers to the next generation

This funding called out for outreach/public engagement activity, which support the promotion of technical careers to the next generation, with a particular emphasis on recruiting individuals from underrepresented groups to technical careers. 

Winning applicants

Lizzy James, Northumbria University

“We’re really thrilled that the National Technician Development Centre has supported our proposal. Northumbria University has a team of talented and inspirational technical staff working across science, engineering and the creative industries and we can’t wait to work with local schools to inspire the next generation. We are so proud of the role we play in our local region demonstrated through our clear social mobility mission as an institution. We want to show that you can have an interesting and exciting technical career working for a university, and we think a set of making activities is the perfect tool to use to demonstrate this to future technicians.”

Neil Guthrie, Edinburgh Napier University 

“I am absolutely delighted to receive this funding and believe this will be a fantastic opportunity to showcase the work that technicians do. Projects like this were really affected by the pandemic and I don’t think we have really got back to where we were pre Covid. I am looking forward to collaborating with my colleagues at Edinburgh Napier University to provide an engaging and enjoyable experience to hopefully inspire some future technicians!”

Technicians improving the reproducibility in research

What else can be done, and specifically, what can we do as a technical community to assist in making research more reproducible? Technicians and technologists are uniquely placed being hands-on with the materials under investigation, the technology, the methodology, the infrastructure and of course the training of other colleagues.

The NTDC have partnered with the United Kingdom Reproducibility Network (UKRN) to explore this question further. We are funding a technician-led project that aspires to make a positive impact on reproducibility. 

Winning applicant

Cecil Cherian Lukose, Northumbria University 

“I am so excited to know that my proposal for improving research reproducibility has won the latest round of funding application organised by National Technician Development Centre (NTDC) together with UK Reproducibility Network (UKRN). This is a great opportunity for me to lead my own project and gain the funding application experience, which was so far outside the remit of this role.

“Research reproducibility is a serious issue, keenly observed by researchers and publication houses around the world. My project aims to understand the aspect of outlier handling, feeding the crisis of research reproducibility. By comparing mechanical characterization of biomedical thin films performed by blinded vs. unblinded research assistants, this project aims to develop training material to help technical team better understand the outliers handling.

“Through this project I hope to empower technical team to positively influence the research culture thereby improving research reproducibility. The experience gained from the application process and the boost of confidence from its success, will equally contribute positively to mould my career trajectory. “

Read more about the funding opportunities

See the previous winning projects