Supporting Research

Digital Futures is built around challenges and cross-cutting capabilities.

Challenges and capabilities

  • Societal Challenges focus on real-world activities that are economically and socially important, building on multidisciplinary strengths within the University.
  • Institutional Challenges focus on the potential for digital technology to transform what we do as a University and how we do it: how we conduct research, what and how we teach, and how we function as an organisation.
  • Cross-cutting Capabilities are digital frameworks, technologies and methods that are important areas of research in their own right and provide the underpinning for addressing the challenges.

Supporting the network

We support the Digital Futures network of over 1,700 researchers at The University of Manchester who are involved in digital research by building communities around these multidisciplinary themes, building relationships with external organisations and partners in this area of ever-increasing importance.

We do this through:

  • Internal events: we run regular internal events focused around individual and clusters of our core multidisciplinary themes and emerging opportunities. These are an excellent opportunity for researchers to share their findings and explore areas where researchers in one field of digital research could learn from researchers in other fields. Many of our events are also available to watch online.
  • External events: our tailored external-facing events promote the University’s digital activity to external stakeholders and enable researchers to develop new contacts and collaborations in required areas. Presenting at events organised by others are important ways for us to facilitate new relationships and maintain existing ones.
  • Communications: we publicise news, events and funding opportunities of interest to our internal and external communities. Sign up to our newsletter or email digitalfutures@manchester.ac.uk to send us your digital-related news to disseminate.
  • Support for research funding applications: we help researchers prepare interdisciplinary grant proposals by introducing appropriate internal and external collaborators. We also work with external partners to identify ways in which the research can have a real-world impact.
  • Scoping activities: our activities are informed by data collection from researchers and PhD students on expertise, areas of interest and gaps or requirements relating to our themes. You can complete our Citizens and Democracy, Cities and Environment, Industry 5.0, Social Media and Networks, and Creative and Heritage theme surveys.