PW 1818 Involving university students in road safety research by providing financial support through memorial fund

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Abstract

Background

Nepal undergoing a growing burden of Road Traffic Injuries with increasing vehicles and road networks. The Global Burden of Disease study estimated 4800 road injury-deaths in Nepal for the year 2016. Police records also reveal that on average about 10 000 people suffer fatal or nonfatal road injuries each year in Nepal. The Padma Kanya Campus (Tribhuvan University) was on the news in April 2016 when it lost its students’ union leader and three professors in two different road crashes in Bara and Doti districts. After these incidents, the campus realized the direct impact of the RTIs and felt urgent need of road safety research resources in Nepal. As a result, Department of Population Studies, deceased professor’s family and students worked together to establish a fund to support academic research activities around road safety.

Aims of the fund

The aim of the fund is to support interested students to conduct research around RTIs which will contribute to identification of possible preventive measures. Similarly, to contribute institutional capacity development in road safety issue in Nepal.

Activities

A fixed account in a bank with the amount of $5000 was opened and authorized by Campus Chief and Chief Account Officer at the campus. To operate the funds and grants to the scholarly activities the Terms of Reference (ToR) was developed. Two annual prizes for top Population Studies (the subject deceased professor used to teach) students from bachelor and postgraduate level and one for best academic research was introduced. This is the first year of establishment and 2 students were selected by the research committee to conduct their dissertation which will explore the barriers to prevention of RTIs.

Conclusion

This is an example of working together between Campus, family, and students. This can be done in other campuses on different issues could help improve research capacity.

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