BU and AECC Chronic Back Pain Project

Bournemouth University and the Anglo European College of Chiropractic (AECC) are to fund a project to investigate chronic back pain.

Following a successful pilot study, the collaborative project will see both institutions joint-fund a PhD studentship to investigate the global problem of chronic back pain. Chronic back pain is a multifaceted condition for which there is no one cause or treatment.

The aim of this PhD studentship is to explore links between self-rated health, sensory perception and function – or how we perceive our pain and how our body responds to this perception.

Beliefs, memories and psychosocial factors relating to chronic back pain have previously been explored, but there is less evidence relating to the understanding of sensory perception (the way our brain interprets signals from our nervous system).

The project aims to influence future knowledge in preventing and managing back pain, resulting in improving outcomes for those with back pain and cost savings for health care, reducing time away from work.

Dr Carol Clark, Senior Lecturer in Physiotherapy at Bournemouth University and project lead, said, “We are excited to be continuing the collaboration between BU and AECC in the field of long term back pain. This project will provide insights into pain perception which will influence treatments in the future.”

As well as Dr Carol Clark, the project will include input from Dr Sharon Docherty (Biologist, AECC) and Dr Neil Osborne (Chiropractor, AECC).

Dr Sharon Docherty, Special Projects Coordinator at AECC, said, “We’re really excited about this opportunity to carry the project forward and we’re hoping it will unveil some interesting insights into chronic pain and how it affects people’s lives.”

If you are interested in finding out more about the PhD studentship, please contact Dr Carol Clark (cclark@bournemouth.ac.uk) or Dr Sharon Docherty (sdocherty@aecc.ac.uk).

Intellectual property law brought to life in student collaboration


Students from the Business School and School of Design, Engineering and Computing (DEC) will work together on a project that aims to bring intellectual property to life.

Final year Law students, from the Business School will advise final year DEC students from across product design and creative technology-based courses, while they create a product or innovation to bring to market.

Intellectual property law – such as copyright, trademarks, designs and patents – is particularly important for design students as it provides a means of protecting the products they create.

Dr Dinusha Mendis, Senior Lecturer in Law and Co-Director of the Centre for Intellectual Property Policy and Management (CIPPM) at BU said: “This project provides for real-life scenarios and brings intellectual property to life.  It is a very practical project which allows the law students to act as lawyers for the DEC students who are their clients.”

The project will last until March, and kicked off with an Intellectual Property Masterclass, where students from across the two schools learned more about the law and how it can be used.

Donal O’Connell, from Chawton Innovation Services spoke to the students about what Intellectual Property is, and how it can benefit businesses.

He welcomed the idea of the student project.

“It seems to be quite unique – I haven’t come across it before,” he said.

“Having this sort of collaboration helps breaks down barriers – the engineers understand that there is more to life than just creating a product.

“The fact that they are doing it at university, before they even get into industry, is absolutely great.”

Matthew Schrader, Head of Intellectual Property Law, at Kiteleys Solicitors in Bournemouth, also spoke to the students.

He agreed that the collaboration would be great experience for the students.

“From a law point of view, it is a good opportunity to find out what it is like to work with real clients,” he said. “It’s a very good idea.”

The students will work in teams to put the theory they have learnt into practice.

There will also be prizes for the best Law student, best DEC student and the best group, sponsored by Paul Turner, a retired Patent Attorney.