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School of Education and Social Science Research Symposium - UCLan





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Uploaded on Jul 12, 2010

The 1st School of Education and Social Science Research Symposium took place on 28 April 2010 in the Media Factory of the University. This was a new type of event for the School, but it built on the very successful 'ESS-Book-Launch' evening of November 2009.

The one-day Symposium was attended by around 20 colleagues. It was an effective show-case for the breadth and depth of research currently being undertaken in the School and in its five academic divisions (Social Sciences, Criminology, History, Deaf Studies and Education).

Proceedings during the day offered research presentations from representatives of these five divisions, organised as 'work-in-progress' style talks and sharing the best of research in ESS with colleagues from across the School and beyond.

Topics from which the presentations were drawn included the following:
• Higher Education collaboration between China and Europe (Prof. Georg Wiessala)
• Post-Foucauldian Criminological Theory (Dr. Tim Owen)
• The Impact of Thatcherism in Scotland (Dr. David Stewart)
• Multi-Inter- and Cross-Disciplinarity in Deaf Studies (Dr. Martin Atherton)
• Risk Exposure of Children and Young People in Manchester (Dr. Paul Doherty)

I did not quite know what to expect when I started organising this one-day conference, but, in retrospect, I have to say that, in my view, two really important things came out of it. First, participants were able to simply get to know what colleagues across the School were doing, research-wise, and with a Pre-2010-General-Election eye to the REF.

What was interesting was that a number of the presentations offered contained open invitations for future collaboration, grant-capture and publication. It was great to see colleagues thus taking the initiative and being both inclusive and creative. This was a great sign of research-culture, a concept which, all too often, remains nebulous and unspecified.
Second, a number of overall themes transpired at the end of the day, linking colleagues' work and providing a lot of food for thought for the future research direction in ESS. Among those leitmotivs I detected wider concerns with issues such as 'identity', interpreting theory, the role of academics in society, participation and shared ideas, the importance of 'place', the role of institutions as political 'actors', and the contemporary challenges to civil society, to name but a few.

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