VR headset

UK-China Newton Fund Researcher Links Workshop

"Health and Wellbeing through VR and AR"


UK Coordinator: Prof. Abdennour El Rhalibi, Professor of Entertainment Computing, Department of Computer Science, Liverpool John Moores University

China Coordinator: Prof. Zhigeng Pan, Professor of Computer Graphics, Director of the Digital Media and Interaction Research Center, Hangzhou Normal University

Discipline: health

Dates: 27 - 30 June 2018 (four day programme)

Venue: X’ian University of Technology, X’ian, Shaanxi Province, China

Download the workshop schedule

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Programme background

British Council Researcher Links provides opportunities for early career researchers from the UK and internationally to interact, learn from each other and explore opportunities for building long-lasting research collaborations.

As part of this programme, we are now recruiting early career researchers to participate in the UK-China Newton Fund Researcher Links Workshop on “Health and Wellbeing Through VR and AR”, which will be col-located with the 12th International E-Learning and Games Conference.

Organised by Liverpool John Moores University and Hangzhou Normal University (China) and hosted by X’ian University of Technology (China), the workshop aims to investigate the latest developments in virtual reality and augmented reality applications for health and wellbeing to achieve sustainable healthcare development and reduce healthcare cost in UK and China. It involves a forum for researchers and practitioners to discuss research, industry practice and collaboration opportunities. The workshop will include keynotes including from industry practitioners and professors, research presentations, visits to Xi’an Science and Technology District and Xi’an Heng Ge Digital Technology Co. Ltd, hands-on sessions on virtual and augmented reality technologies and research proposal bids. Digital healthcare research is developing at a fast pace, and a workshop to discuss VR and AR solutions in this area, and assess future challenges would benefit the participants and their institutions, and inform the research community in China about the potential applications for patients and the healthcare system.

About the workshop

The workshop will provide a unique opportunity for sharing research expertise and networking. Early career researchers will have the opportunity to present their research in the form of a short oral presentation and discuss this with established researchers from the UK and partner countries. There will be a focus on building up links for future collaborations and participants selected on the basis of their research potential and ability to build longer term links.

Up to 17 UK early career researchers will have the opportunity to travel to China for the workshop, funded by this British Council award, to meet with up to 17 China early career researchers to share research expertise in "Health and Wellbeing Through VR and AR". Successful candidates will be selected on the basis of the content of their application form (see below).

The British Council and The National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) will cover the costs related to the participation to the workshop, including: travel (both international and local), accommodation and meals. Costs for the visa, and travel insurance will be covered; however participants will be responsible for making all the necessary arrangements. The British Council accepts no responsibility for any problems which may occur when the participants are in-country.

The workshop is led by:
Prof. Abdennour El Rhalibi (Liverpool John Moores University)
Prof. Zhigeng Pan (Hangzhou Normal University)

Supported by expert mentors from China and the UK:
Prof. Ke Lv (China Academy of Science)
Prof. Mingmin Zhang (Zhejiang University)
Dr Yuanyuan Shen (LJMU)
Dr Hoshang Kolivand (LJMU)

Keynote speakers include: Dr Tom Dawson (Director of Rescon Technologies, UK), Prof. Hongbing Lu (Fourth Military Medical University, X’ian), Prof. Su Yang (Fudan University), and Prof. Zhenming Yuan (Hangzhou Normal University).

Applications have now closed.

Please read the following selection information before applying:

Please read the following selection information before applying:

Eligibility criteria

  • Applications must be submitted using the Researcher Links application form
  • Application must be submitted before the above deadline
  • Participants must be early career researchers: defined as holding a PhD (or having equivalent research experience – in e-health and wellbeing, or computer science and computer graphics related areas, especially in VR and AR. Other related engineering or medical technologies areas will be also considered) and having up to 10 years post-PhD research experience
  • Participants must have a research or academic position (a permanent post, research contract, or fellowship etc) at a recognised research institution either in the UK or in China
  • Please note that participants are expected to attend all sessions of the workshop. The participants are expected to do a presentation and will have the opportunity to submit a paper and on a topic relevant to the workshop which will be published in an LNCS Springer Verlag book after review and selection

Quality assessment

  • Experience and relevance of the applicant’s research area to the workshop
  • Motivation and contribution to the aims of the workshop
  • Description of the long term impact expected through the participation in the workshop
  • Ability to disseminate workshop’s outcomes

Selection procedure

  • Eligibility check
  • Quality assessment

Notification of results

Applicants will be notified by email about two months prior to the workshop.

Equal opportunities

Equal opportunities and diversity are at the heart of the British Council’s cultural relations ambitions. While recognising that some research fields are dominated by one particular gender, co-ordinators are encouraged to work towards an equal gender balance, promote diversity. They must not exclude applicants on the basis of ethnicity, gender, religious belief, sexual orientation, or disability. Participants’ selection undertaken by workshop organisers must not contravene this policy. Extra support to enable participation of early career researchers with special needs will be given.

Top image: Maurizio Pesce/Flickr under CC BY 2.0

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