• ARENA RESEARCH

  • 2014 2015

  • Workshops MasterClasses

Arena Research

The ARENA project: “Co-Production of Knowledge with Communities of Pracitce: New Methodological Engagements and Hermeneutic Challenges”

was hosted by the University of Brighton in collaboration with Royal Holloway, University of London

AHRC project AH/L011158/1

ARENA is the Arts Research ENrichment Activity programme supported by the AHRC (Arts and Humanities Research Council) through its collaborative research skills initiative.

In partnership with Royal Holloway, London, Brighton was funded for a programme of research skills “enrichment” to run from September 2014 to July 2015. This comprised inter-related themes responding to the research challenges of the research impact agenda. These included consideration of i) ways of working within and accessing communities of practice; ii) challenges of co-production and collaboration in the generation of knowledge; iii) the core question of the nature of interpretation and the hermeneutic process; and iv) the digital transformation of sources and data. On all these issues, participants dealt with tangible data and case-study materials, producing outcomes combining hermeneutic insights with a deepened sense of the possibilities of practical engagement. The programme equipped doctoral students and ECRs to select appropriate hermeneutic pathways when working with historical objects, artefacts, performances, live events and recordings, and in co-production of knowledge and practice.

In 5 MasterClasses participants explored the thinking of guest researchers: Etienne Wenger on Communities of Practice; Yve Lomax on writing, voice and performance; Jonathan Burrows on dance, practice, performance and writing; Robert Macfarlane on landscape, meaning and interpretive writing; and Grant Kester on the dialogic turn in art criticism. Macfarlane and Kester also complemented the MasterClass sessions with public appearances, the former in conversation with the BBC’s Andrew Tomlinson in a Brighton Festival Fringe event, the latter in an open lecture scheduled in the University of Brighton’s Festival of Research.

There were 2 two-day long Workshops. In the first, participants explored the nature of co-production and collaborative work, including consideration of the nature of objects and material artefacts as partners in co-production, and examples from Brighton’s CUPP (Community and University Partnership Programme) such as work on Inclusive Arts. The second workshop looked at aspects of the transition from analogue to digital in a variety of research contexts, based in practical examples presented by archivists from Brighton’s Design Archives, the regional archive centre The Keep, and national specialists in data-searching and retrieval.
A 1-day Workshop adapting the collaborative/co-production content was run for ECRs, and offered twice during the programme.

A residential workshop over 3 days gave consideration to the place of experiential and creative writing in the research process, building upon Royal Holloway’s particular expertise in creative writing and practice-based projects.

Throughout the programme participants were encouraged to generate their own materials, individually and collectively, and some of these have been incorporated into this website alongside films made of selected presentations and visual representation of some of the workshop activities.
All told, including an initial induction session for core programme participants,  ARENA generated 301 participant days, engaging 45 individual doctoral/research students, and 19 Early Career Researchers (ECRs).

 

 

Professor Alan Tomlinson
Programme Leader

 

MasterClasses

Dr Etienne Wenger

Communities of Practice

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Dr Etienne Wenger

Professor Yve Lomax

Research and Creative Practice

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Professor Yve Lomax

Jonathan Burrows

Research

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Jonathan Burrows

Dr Robert Macfarlane

The Landscape

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Dr Robert Macfarlane

Professor Grant Kester

Cultural Production and Practices

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Professor Grant Kester

Workshops

Two-day workshop

Co-production of knowledge

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Two-day workshop

Two 1-day workshops

ECR Workshops

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Two 1-day workshops

Two-day workshop

Navigating analogue, digital and the archive

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Two-day workshop

Residential 3-day workshop

Experiential/creative writing & co-production

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Residential 3-day workshop

We are what we repeatedly do; excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.

— Aristotle —

Arena Research

This was a fantastic opportunity for PhD students from the University of Brighton and Royal Holloway, University of London, to participate in one of only six new AHRC-funded, organisation-led awards to support collaborative skills development initiatives. Initially the call went out to PhD students at both universities who had not yet passed the Transfer (or equivalent) stage of their doctorate.

In total, 45 Phd students and 16 Early Career Researchers (ECRs) benefitted from at least one ARENA event.

 The following students formed the “core” participants in the programme:

Bergit Arends (Royal Holloway)

Curating Art and Environment in the Age of the Anthropocene

John Barlow (Brighton)

New Perceptions of the environment: themes of landscape, travel and tourism in contemporary art

Elizabeth Bennett (Royal Holloway)

Performing Landscapes: Biography, Affect, Presence and Absence

Katie Boxall (Royal Holloway)

Writing Taking Place: Cultural Geographies of Dyslexic Creative Writers and Writing Practice

Liz Bruchet (Brighton)

Curatorial Practice and the Archive

Kimberley Chandler (Brighton)

Skeuomorphism and design in understanding the digital future: the crafting of metaphor in modern material culture

Anja Crabb (Brighton)

The future shape of design – a toolkit for longer-lasting material experiences

Bahar Khayamian Esfahani (Brighton)

Skin cancer prevention in young males through design and technology

Gavin Fry (Brighton)

What were the reasons some men elected to make art textiles during the 1980s in Britain?

Aycan Garip (Brighton)

And then there was art: art interventions in Public Spaces

Cara Gray (Royal Holloway)

Amateur Dramatics in Urban Utopias: Performing Place and the Materialities of Performance.

Russell Heywood (Brighton)

“The Doom of Clowns”: a novel and commentary

Uschi Klein (Brighton)

The photographic practices of young people with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)

Jayne Lloyd (Royal Holloway)

The Social, Aesthetic and Environmental Affect of Arts Practices with People with Dementia Living in Care Settings

Emma Miles (Royal Holloway)

Theatre for Early Years Audiences and Pedagogy: An Ethnographic Case Study of Young Children’s Theatre Experiences

Lujain Mirza (Brighton)

A Co-Production Approach Through the Medium of Photography Exploring Self-Identity and Independency of Saudi Women

Melaneia Warwick (Brighton)

Inclusive Arts and Meaningful Engagement for Adults with PMLD

Arts Research Enrichment Activities

Enrichment

Communities

Communities

Students, curators, artists, community groups, charities and scholars engaged in research.

Collaboration

Collaboration

Work on the hermeneutics of contemporary culture demands collaborative sensibilities and an awareness of the subtleties of co-production.

Creativity

Creativity

The process of making meaning from direct experience.

Programme Facts

24
MasterClass Participants
9
Skills Development Sessions
4
Programme Strands
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