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UCL secures flagship training contract with Foreign and Commonwealth Office

ucypsga10 December 2017

Foreign and Commonwealth OfficeUCL has won a flagship contract to train the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s staff and diplomats around the world in economics, with specialist subject matter to include how different markets and exchange rates operate, the economics of the environment and more.

In a significant coup for the university’s Economics department, UCL will train up to 300 FCO staff a year over four years. UCL won the contract through an open competition in which it scored particularly highly on content and focus on learner needs.

Shamik Dhar, FCO Chief Economist and Head of the Diplomatic Academy Economics and Prosperity Faculty, said: “UCL won the contract by really thinking through what our diplomats need in their day jobs and are designing a course that is accessible to the whole of the FCO’s global network.”

Bespoke online courses

The bespoke courses, aimed at degree level learners, will be predominantly delivered online. They will modernise the FCO’s current economics teaching and provide FCO staff with practical insights on the markets and economies in which they are posted.

The programme has been designed to suit staff out in the field who might be studying after the working day, and includes video on demand elements. Teaching will be broken into 15 to 20 minute sections, along with live interactive webinar sessions, to ensure staff can work at their own pace.

“We will be introducing learners to cutting edge research,” said Parama Chaudhury, a principal teaching fellow at UCL. “Learners in this programme will be equipped with the knowledge of the most reliable and current research on pressing issues, and what the experts in the field are presently recommending in terms of policy.”

Specialist subject matter

The course will consist of two main parts, with one billed as Core Learning (CL) and one as Job Specific Learning (JSL). Both will be practical in nature, enabling learners to see how the course subject matter can be applied practically in both their individual roles and the markets in which they work.

The specialist subject matter will include the macroeconomic crises, economics data, regulating markets, economic growth and development and more.Image

Image: Foreign and Commonwealth Office (credit: p_a_h, source: Flickr)

Explore GEO’s new interactive data dashboard

ucypore24 November 2017

My role in the Global Engagement Office (GEO) involves mapping UCL’s collaborations around the world, to help us tell our global story better. But as you can imagine at a university of UCL’s size, this is no mean feat!

Thanks to the work of the many academics collaborating internationally who have shared details of their work with GEO, we’ve been able to compile an interactive dashboard showcasing some of this activity.

You can take a look around the dashboard, created in Tableau public, here.

The motivation behind this new resource is to show the collaborations that GEO is aware of UCL having in certain countries. It is arranged by UCL faculty.

For example, let’s say we want to use the dashboard to find out what collaborations UCL has in Brazil.

We just select ‘Brazil’ on the right hand side, then we can see in the matrix below the map the faculties and departments that collaborate in Brazil, while in the rows we’ll see the Brazilian institutions that we collaborate with, as shown in the image here:

Picture1We can see that GEO is aware of UCL’s School of European Languages, Culture and Society (SELCS) in the Faculty of Arts & Humanities having a collaboration with the “Casa de Rui Barbosa Foundation.”

Picture2

Another way the dynamic dashboard can be used is by navigating by Faculty. For example, let’s have look into Brain Sciences. If we select the faculty on the left hand side, we can can see the location of their collaborations:

Picture3
We’re keen to keep this dashboard as up to date as possible, so if you are a UCL academic collaborating with colleagues overseas and you can’t find your work listed here, please contact me and we can add this in.