About Viv

Dr Vivien Rolfe BSc PhD

Up to date list of papers and conference presentations –> http://vivrolfe.com/books-and-publications/

Viv Rolfe

Dr Viv Rolfe is an independent open educator and Director of a number of science open education projects. Her subject specialisms are intestinal physiology, functional foods, and research method expertise includes qualitative and quantitative approaches, plus systematic review. She has worked in medical research, higher education and the food industry. She continues to work on open education projects alongside her current full-time industrial role.

As a researcher, Viv has won several awards for her work. Her PhD attained at the University of Sheffield enabled her to study diarrhoeal disease. In gaining a Research Fellowship at the Institute of Child Health in London, she looked at novel fish oil therapy for inflammatory bowel disease in children, and used fluorescent confocal microscope techniques for filming the absorptive processes in the colon. In this time she was awarded the Glaxo Wellcome Young Investigator Award from the UK Physiological Society and AP Mowat Young Investigator Award from the British Society of Gastroenterology.

Colon Surface with BODIPY

This is the surface of the colon (large intestine) that is “live” in an incubation chamber so we can study its properties. The colon is stained with BODIPY phalloidin, a red fluorescent dye, that stains the cell’s own skeleton – called the cytoskeleton. In this photograph we are looking down onto the openings of four crypts of Lieberkuhn, which are  glands in the colon that absorb water. (The colon is a bit of a salvage yard, taking up left over nutrients and water from the faeces). The BODIPY dye also lets us see the individual epithelial cells (the cells outlined in yellow) in amazing detail.

After London, she worked as researcher for Mars Inc, Pedigree Petfoods Division. Her team’s research explored novel functional ingredients and their beneficial effects on pet health, including dietary fibre, phytochemical and functional foods. At this time her life began to be taken over by springer spaniels and she took out shares in slippers. Below is Spike.


Transition to open educator

She is Director of three open educational resource (OER) projects sharing science resources with global communities. Having worked in higher education she achieved a number of the most senior professional awards – a UK National Teaching Fellowship (2012) and Principal Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (2015). She was also recognised in the Jisc Social Media Influencers Top 50 list in 2015. In recognition of her digital approaches to learning and teaching, she was awarded the title  Learning Technologist of the Year as awarded by the Association of Learning Technology jointly with James Clay (2009).

She passionate about the concept of opening the doors to education and research. Education needs to be made more equitable and accessible, and there is a transparency crisis in research. She directs three OER (open educational resource) projects that share content under Creative Commons open licenses, are well visited globally. Other national work includes:

6 thoughts on “About Viv

  1. Dear Vivian,

    I am writing to request that you update your Cochrane review on probiotics for maintenance of remission in Crohn’s disease. Are you able to update this review?

    This review was originally published in Issue 4, 2006 and Cochrane policy stipulates that review should be updated every two years. Ideally we should get an update done as soon as reasonably possible as the review has not been updated in seven years. We can provide assistance with the literature search if that would be helpful. We can run the searches for you and send you the results.

    The update could be as simple as running a new search that doesn’t identify any new studies. However, if the search does identify new studies these would need to be added to the review and the results, discussion and conclusions would need to be revised as appropriate.

    At this stage it would be most helpful if we could agree upon a future date when the updated searches will be run and then we can then negotiate when the draft updated review will be due at the editorial office.

    I look forward to your response. Many thanks.

    Kind regards,


  2. Pingback: GIFaChrome House Band Rocks - GIFaChrome

  3. Pingback: How To Be A Successful Failure? | The Aspiring Professionals Hub

  4. Pingback: Digital Discovery Week 2017 @SussexUni - Podblasts, 5G and Virtual Reality - Technology Enhanced Learning

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *