EPSRC Ideas Factory has been the ‘home of innovation since 2004’ designing and developing the Sandpit model of idea creation. Created by Susan Morrell of EPSRC, Sandpits bring together a director, up to 50 stakeholders and mentors in the same place for five days to immerse themselves and clarify, create, ponder, develop, investigate, forge and agree on new directions for scientific discovery, with the carrot of potential funding for the ideas that make it through the final day of evaluation.

Creativity@Home was a special project created and developed in 2010 by the Engineering and Physical Research Council (EPSRC) to allow more research teams to access training in creative problem solving with a view to adding value to existing and future grants for scientific research and getting more people involved in idea creation more of the time.

facilitate this!was one of three companies selected by EPSRC to develop training in the use and application of creative problem solving tools and techniques and pilot them with three leading teams and major grant holders at UCL, Imperial and Cambridge Universities and their identified grant partners. The success of the project led to EPSRC offering grants to all major grant holders since 2011. facilitate this! since worked with a large number of project teams including Bristol, Lincoln, and Oxford; Cambridge(IfM); UCL (CHI+MED, CMIC and CRUICIBLE and Grand Challenges), Warwick, University of Aberdeen and Aberdeen Business School, Sheffield, Leeds, Durham, Southampton and Salford (FIRM) to offer some or all of the following:

  • facilitating sandpits and mini sandpits
  • team and cohort forming for initiatives such as CDTs
  • training research teams in the skills of facilitating creativity
  • designing and facilitating project gateway review and development workshops
  • team development events to build relationships between consortium members

As a result of the work, breakthrough thinking was achieved and major grants have been awarded. If you wish to explore how we can bring the creativity@home experience to your research team and help you to develop the skills of facilitating creativity then please contact us.

We can also help in other ways…

  • facilitate this! can help your research team or consortia to realise the full benefit of all team members in delivering a multi-disciplinary, complex research project where culture, hierarchy and remote working can all interfere with getting the best out of the time and the team available, contact us.
  • If you are planning a full or mini sandpit of your own or wish to understand more about how a sandpit can help you then contact us to support you in planning and facilitating your next event or training up a team within your organisation to run your own events.
  • If you are coming up to a key gateway in your project timetable and wish to bring the team together to review progress, explore options, create new possibilities or plan for the year ahead then we can design, plan and facilitate that too. Help is only an email away!

Contact us to find out more about Creativity@Home.

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