Impact and Public Engagement

User involvement and public engagement are at the core of Digital Economy research. As well as representation at major international conferences, members of the SiDE team regularly participate in public engagement events, a list of which you can find below.



SiDE researchers demonstrated their current research activities including Tweet My Street, Move ECloud, and E-Science Central at the University’s annual Go Digital event.


Researchers from several areas of the project provided demonstrations to the public at the Digital Economy showcase event held at Rich Mix in Shoreditch, London.


SiDE’s research hub administrator, Oonagh delivered a presentation at the ARMA Good Practice Exchange event focussing on SiDE’s public engagement activity providing examples of how we engage users throughout the design and implementation of the individual research projects.



We hosted a stand at the annual Digital Economy conference  in Salford, with Horizon hub and Dot.Rural. We provided information on the research projects and publicised SiDE research to delegates.

Go Digital Newcastle – internal event which attracted around 800 employees of the University in order to engage and inform them. SiDE researchers provided demonstrations and Oonagh McGee and Barry Hodgson provided information on the project at the SiDE  display stand.

We hosted the North East launch of Road Safety week which highlighted our Driver Distraction study.

Oonagh McGee, in conjunction with Transport researchers Gareth Evans and Amy Guo organised a seminar and panel debate with senior Transport experts. Speakers included Professor Edmund King, president of the AA who focussed the dangers of driver distractions. The event was open to the public and attracted 50 delegates to the hub, who engaged in a lively debate and took part in live demos within DriveLAb.


Paul Watson, Barry Hodgson and Oonagh McGee promoted SiDE research to attendees at the launch of the Go On UK North East pathway, a 6 month programme of activity to increase digital skills across the region. Baroness Martha Lane Fox delivered a keynote speech supported by the inspiring stories of local users, whose lives have been improved through access to online services.


Paul Watson delivered a talk to senior officials at Northumberland County Council on our work with older people and the application of technology. Oonagh McGee, Barry Hodgson and Dan Brennan talked to attendees about SiDE research and provided demonstrations of current research projects.British Science Festival.  We hosted a panel debate and live demo session on our work with Older Drivers. The event attracted 75 participants and engaged the public with our research.Re:Work Technology summit. Paul Watson delivered a talk on the work of sensors within the context of SiDE research.


Technology Strategy Board Innovate in London. The SiDE team provided demos of the Portrait application and the work of the Transport strand. The team interacted with hundreds of delegates over the 2 day conference and gained links with companies and individuals working within the media, assistive technology and research development.



Elder’s Council Newcastle AGM and Try Technology event – 
Oonagh McGee assisted in the organisation and coordination of this event which afforded older members of the community to try out technology that they were not familiar with such as Skype, Kindle and Smartphones. 


Digital Economy All Hands conference in Aberdeen. The SiDE team provided demos and information about the project to conference delegates.


AGE UK AGM Lynne Corner presented the work of the project and Oonagh McGee represented the project and gave information to members of the public in the exhibition space.


Newcastle University Honorary degree ceremony – Oonagh McGee, Katerina Pavkova, Dan Brennan and Dr Jon Hook presented demos and informed recipients and invited guests, about SiDE’s research activity. 



Thinking Digital Conference – Members of the SiDE Team presented demos to hundreds of conference delegates. Professor Atau Tanaka,  who previously led the Creative Industries activity delivered a talk on SiDE research activity and Culture Lab.


Oonagh McGee organised the annual Digital Economy conference, attracting 250 delegates to the region for the event. The conference was held in 3 city centre locations and incorporated demonstrations, plenary sessions and a conference dinner and poster session in the Great North Museum: Hancock.



ICADI Conference – Barry Hodgson and Oonagh McGee hosted a SiDE stand and promoted the project to conference delegates.