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The University of Southampton
Geography and Environmental Science

Engaging through making: exploring the crafted geographies of policy, creative practice and the politics of engaged research Seminar

2 March 2016
Lecture Theatre B, Building 44

For more information regarding this seminar, please email Dr Nathaniel O'Grady at N.O' .

Event details

In this seminar, Dr Nicola Thomas (University of Exeter) will reflect on her 'craft geographies' research in the context of the wider engagement and impact agendas. She will highlight the ways in which her research around the policy and practice of the creative economy has led to increasingly specialist sub-sector engagements within the craft sector. The seminar will focus on the subtle ways in which the current research and engagement agendas are shaping the delivery and planning of her research projects, showcasing current AHRC funded 'Follow on Fund for Impact and Engagement' activities. This work brings Nicola's longer term research around the geographies of craft networks within the creative economy to new audiences. The development of the Craft Shelf web-app, Craft Shelf and Two Make exhibitions, community history project and 'Researcher in Residency' roles within the Crafts Council will be placed under the spotlight. Questions of designing engagement to deepen the reach and significance of the research will be addressed, whist reflecting on the challenge that this brings to maintaining a balanced engagement across the spheres of teaching, research and administration within an academic job role. The tensions of engaged research will be addressed, and the iterative way in which engagement might feed back into a more ethical research practice, and the development of new research agendas. The seminar will ask what 'playing the game' does to our research practice.

International Journal of Cultural Policy and can be found at:

Speaker information

Dr Nicola Thomas, Department of Geography, University of Exeter. Dr Nicola Thomas is Director of Impact within the Department of Geography, University of Exeter and Hon. Secretary of the Research and Higher Education Division of the RGS-IBG. She sits on the University of Exeter AHRC Strategy Group, and the Heritage and Creative Economy Steering Groups. Her research within the field of the creative economy and the craft sector has been funded through eight AHRC grants including standard, network, proof of concept, follow on fund, and creative economy and technology funding. Her most recent publication is published with co-author Doreen Jakob (2015) Firing up Craft Capital: the renaissance of craft and craft policy in the United Kingdom.

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