Two University projects shortlisted for Times Higher Education Awards 2021

Date posted

9 September 2021


Edinburgh Napier has been shortlisted in two categories in this year’s prestigious Times Higher Education Awards, widely known as the sector’s Oscars.

Professor Lis Neubeck, from the School of Health & Social Care, is shortlisted for Knowledge Exchange/Transfer Initiative of the Year.

Meanwhile, the Bleedin’ Saor initiative to tackle period poverty is recognised in the category for Outstanding Contribution to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.

Both projects will go forward to compete for honours at a ceremony in the Hilton Metropole in central London on November 25.

Entitled Abnormal Heart Rhythms: Changing National and Global Detection and Management, Professor Neubeck’s internationally leading research and knowledge exchange focuses on the early detection and appropriate management of the most common abnormal heart rhythm, atrial fibrillation, and has had significant impact on the field of cardiovascular health at a national, European and global level.

The work of Professor Neubeck, her team at Edinburgh Napier and industry partners, has demonstrated the effect of new devices, which record heart rhythm and technology to detect atrial fibrillation and increases the uptake of medication to prevent strokes.

Kirsten Macleod, Ruth Cochrane and Lindsay Morgan spearhead the Bleedin’ Saor initiative, an innovative Edinburgh Napier student/staff collective launched in 2018 with the goal of utilising the creative skillset of students to tackle period poverty, increase access to products and create an inclusive environment where menstruation can be discussed without shame or stigma.  

Woman Cutting the ribbon on the new free tampon dispensers

The stigma surrounding menstruation has a significant effect on the physical and mental well-being of students and there is a staggering lack of knowledge and research into menstrual health. Bleedin’ Saor sought to challenge this inequality by launching a campaign to break the taboo, improve access to products and raise awareness.

The project achieved this through a university wide communications campaign, the creation of a documentary film, an educational booklet and by designing accessible dispensers for schools, colleges and universities. We also hosted the first ever university wide Bloody Big Brunch in March 2019.

The awards organisers said today that the pandemic brought out the very best in the higher education sector, as universities nimbly negotiated an unprecedented range of challenges that impacted on every aspect of their work.

There were nearly 600 entries across 20 categories for what are the 17th annual THE Awards, covering a wide range of university activity across leadership and management, administration, and academia.      

The awards focus primarily on activity during the 2019-20 academic year, and so include a large number of submissions based on the outstanding initial response of institutions to the unique and wide-ranging challenges brought by the Covid pandemic. 

Logo with yellow text THE awards 2021 on black background

THE editor John Gill said: “This is the 17th year that the THE Awards will recognise the best of the best in UK higher education, across 20 categories covering all aspects of university activity. But this year’s awards will reflect a period of turmoil and innovation necessitated by the pandemic, making it quite unlike any previous year.

“For the first time this year, we have also extended our awards to include higher education institutions in Ireland, and we are delighted to say that we have had a record number of entries, reflecting the brilliance of universities across the whole of the UK and Ireland. With almost 600 institutions, teams and individuals nominated, it really is a fantastic achievement to make it onto this year’s shortlist.

“We look forward to celebrating the incredible response of university staff in exceptionally tough circumstances when we gather for the Oscars of higher education in November.”