Researcher who sought crowdfunding is a finalist in a research communication competition

Submitted on Tue, 05/17/2016 - 09:55

Eloise Mikkonen, an Alzheimer’s scholar from the University of Tampere, who sought crowdfunding for her research is a finalist in the Innovation for Research Communication (Liikutu tiedosta) competition. The competition, which will be held in early June, is about looking for innovative ways to communicate about research.

The competition is a part of the national research communication day organised by the Committee for Public Information, the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies and the communications agency Kaskas Media.

Mikkonen was nominated for the competition by an acquaintance who only told her about the nomination afterwards.

“I was very surprised to be selected as one of the finalists,” Mikkonen says.

“But if I win, I will be able to support my research for another month or so, which would be a fantastic outcome from all this publicity!”

All six finalists will have six minutes to pitch their research ideas. The winner is chosen by the public by a telephone vote and the award is a sum of money.

Mikkonen’s international two-month crowdfunding campaign to raise money for her research on Alzheimer’s disease resulted in about 6-8 weeks’ salary and pension insurance contributions.

Altogether 66 individuals from different countries funded the research by about EUR 4,300.

“The campaign was a surprising success, which has encouraged me to take my research to the public stage on a more frequent basis. I am thinking of starting a blog and interacting with my supporters by sharing my research results and encouraging discussion on the research results,” Mikkonen says.

Would you recommend crowdfunding campaigns to other researchers?

“It’s time consuming and it isn’t guaranteed to work, but then so is grant application writing. There are so many aspects that can influence the success or failure of a campaign, so it needs to be thought out properly. I’ve learned a lot, but it has been worth it.”

Alzheimer researcher at the University of Tampere is crowdfunding her research (News, March 17, 2016)