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PARIP 2003


12 September 2003 | 13 September 2003 | Advisory Group Summary

PLENARY FEEDBACK | 14 September 2003

Baz Kershaw: If I could… err.. call the conference to order as they say…. Umm. We’re running a little bit behind of course, but we’ll go on with the programme and hope to finish in time, uh, as planned for lunch. Um, the first part of this session is the feedback from the discussion groups from this morning, and the second part is feedback from the three members of the advisor group. Um if there’s time for anything additional to that, we’ll devote it to comments, contributions from the floor of course. Um, so can I ask, err Group 1 please to feedback? Thanks Pete.


Pete Bailey: Hi, um the pedants among you will notice that I represented group two last time (laughter) there was so few of group two there this morning so we decided to go and join group one and form a twin-headed beast. Um, but we do speak with relatively one voice. And ah, the, I suppose the, ah, the language of, er, our talk today was quite packed with, err, the sound of tax returns and tills and cheques being written and then ripped up, so we, so we took a fairly, er, financial theme if you like.

Um, we started with, um, some positive thought, from several practitioners, about the, the usefulness of this, um, this conference in providing a language to describe PaR and the, that, felt that the conference had served to disseminate that language a little. Um then we moved onto the knotty question of documentation, um, and the question of, of embodiment of research within practice. Um and it was felt that, while it might be possible for research to be embodied within practice, actually there were relatively few people, who can appreciate the research within that practice, or extract the research element from that practice, um and that was an area um, really for development. And also for, for developing language, which, languages which might evidence the embodiment, the research element embodied, with within practice.

Um, it was felt that the term evidencing was, might be a a a positive term, um, that could be used alongside documentation. Um…we wondered whether it, it was within PARIP’s brief to set up viewing groups, peer review groups, um, and it was felt that, it was important to include members from outside the academy in those groups, um and that these, it was, it was also expressed that these bodies should have some clout with the RAE and also should have, some, some, clear criteria by which they worked, um …

The.. Membership of the RAE panels was felt to be a very important feature, um and that actually, this membership might be one of the key defining features, ur, in the, the development of of, ahh, the, the agenda within different disciplines. Um, the criteria for the art and design area within the RAE was felt to be er, admirable broad and, um, and that it may, um attempt to be inclusive, and whilst, whilst obviously you can’t lift, um, sets of criteria from across disciplines, um, we felt that other fields might be able to achieve parity with the art and design criteria, um, whilst remaining different..

Um, we touched on the question of authorship within collaborative practice, and moved onto the question of dissemination. Erm,…the…extent of dissemination was, was a key topic that we talked about, um, and the relation of, of dissemination to the RAE rating. Um and it was felt that the international, the necessity for an international approach profile within research, within, as, as required by the RAE might mitigate against that PaR which was relative, it was felt was relatively different, but difficult to define, err, to disseminate internationally, err, performances would either go on either locally or in the UK and particularly dissemination through teaching, can’t really be viewed as international, and, and this was felt to be an area of, of difficulty. Erm……,

There’s a sense that the RAE gradings would pressurise institutions, er to do, either do a great deal of research, or, um that certain departments who felt that a five rating was too far away might shut down their research element altogether, and that this might exclude people from research. Um, the, the movement in the next RAE panel towards a greater inclusively of, of, members of staff was felt to be a positive thing and that they well open up PaR, um, as a more important field within the research departments.

Um,…the, the question of writing up the RAEs was also ah, raised and it was noted how it is very useful to have someone in the department who can describe, err, PaR in a in a useful way, in the RAE’s terms if you like, um. Within, within departments, there is a kind of debate, it was recognised that PARIP conducts this debate on a national level, but on, there’s also this debate that on a smaller micro level, within departments, it was wondered whether it might be within PARIP’s remit to provide support for people from within individual departments, erm, in order to enable this debate to go on more effectively, on that that micro level. Um...there was, a, and finally there was, people had a generally generally positive feeling about the conference, and err, really just the raise the question of the dissemination of the conclusions of the conference and whether, err, the, meetings are gonna be transcribed and disseminated, so, thanks very much. Baz: I’m not sure if we’re up to group three or group two at this stage.

It’s a splinter group two.

Baz: Splinter group two?



Chorus, chorus line up..Bella Merlin? Right, until this point we’ve been a somewhat anarchic group. This morning we decided we would actually focus on the questions. So these are the thoughts we had, um first of all problematizing notions of professional and academic practice. Um, we thought that professional practice doesn’t necessarily include research, but it can lead to or provoke it, but there’s an assumption in the academic context that necessarily practice must include a research imperative. We also thought that it was important to recognise that all forms of research have an element of creativity, and that often there’s a spark of curiosity which inspires practice in the variety of debates and we needed to bare that in mind.

Err, the concept of PaR seems to be pointing to a lack as though practice lacks academic rigour, and as though academic practice lacks professionalism, and these are the anxieties that we work with all the time in these different contexts. At the end of our discussion of this issue, we then thought, well maybe we should turn that on its head and actually think of professional practice and academic rigour as enhancing one another rather than necessarily ‘this being a relationship of that.’

Um we talked about trying to position PaR within a space between, or a third space allowing continuity and connectivity between professional and academic practice. Is that correct? More or less? (Laugh, Drawing on board) It’s not an egg timer [referring to the diagram of third space]. I didn’t really understand that, so I won’t elaborate (laughter) um… the academy can offer a critical space to professional practices. We need to recognise that PaR is an area which does advanced research that the industry doesn’t necessarily want to do. I think that was a point perhaps, made particularly in relation to media practice.

Um, there was a feeling that we needed to get the academy out into the theatres and take PaR into the professional world, rather than always expecting artists to come into the academy and then move out and disseminate the work. And people talked about models in dance, where that sort of interconnectivity is already happening, where artists are working with dance agencies and the universities in order to take projects forward. And we talked about moving beyond the master class, and towards a situation where we’re exchanging wisdom.

Number two, ‘epistemologies and knowledges associated with PaR’ we didn’t like the word epistemology, so we dropped it until half way through the discussion where we decided it was actually quite useful, so focusing on the idea of knowledge, um, we’re now beyond a place were we think there’s a unified — you can probably all read this! I don’t know why — we’re now beyond a place were we assume there’s a unified knowledge, um, although we do recognise that there is a dominant discourse equating rational truth with rational scientific method. What PaR does is to invite us to think outside of that framework and to think about structures of knowledge, outside of the dominant discourse. Such as embodied knowledge, err, experiential knowledge, we also talked about. And practical knowledge, um meaning not just, err, skill, but the kind of wisdom that comes from doing something repeatedly. Um, and from having a very intimate awareness of one's medium. We also talked in relation to experiential knowledge, about the need to try and find different ways to disseminate that through different kinds of experiences so, it wasn’t necessarily a question of articulating that in a very formalised way, but finding other ways in which that kind of, those ideas can actually filter out into the world.

Um, but we did think the real challenge was the articulation of, or the drawing attention to the existence of the knowledges produced through practice. Um and that’s where we decided we liked the word epistemology after all, in that one would expect a PhD student or a practical researcher in another sphere to actually have a quite profound awareness of the history of the form and the context in which they were working, um and indeed that’s presupposed in the idea of ‘new’ knowledge because to know that something’s new you have to know what has gone on before.

So three, have you given up illustrating? Um, resources — space primarily and time. Beyond that it would depend on the project, the discipline you were talking about. There needs to be a better network between arts and cultural businesses and the academy, and the communication between those contexts needs to go both ways. We don’t necessarily need large amounts of money, especially if we’re inventive and especially if we’re exploring process, but we would quite like large amounts of money (laughter). We need soft ware rather than hardware, perhaps some skills in actually obtaining funding, and help with the processes one needs to go through for putting funding applications together. But there’s a danger then that we make work according to funding body guidelines rather than in terms of that spark of curiosity we were discussing earlier. Um, often the arts councils don’t want to fund things that happen in collaboration with universities and that needed changing. In fact there are instances were that has started to change but it needs pushing forward.

Err, a dual purpose communications infrastructure –— perhaps someone can explain, I don’t know what that means, um it has to serve two purposes initially before we find a common language, we need to learn from other disciplines which also talk about these issues in an advanced way and perhaps at universities we’re in a very good position to be able to draw on disciplinary knowledge in this kind of field without necessarily those kinds of disciplines being specifically related to performance, we can learn a lot from psychology etc etc in how to deal with these problems. Em, so we need to follow the opportunities of our own disciplines and logic of other frameworks, which will help us to come to a situation where the problems we started will dissolve.

Err, in relation to research methods, we thought that yes, we need different methods depending on whether we’re doing research or practice, because research questions will be articulated separately from the work in the case of a PaR project. Then we thought, no we don’t necessarily need different methods because primarily PaR could be providing a space to allow a different kind of reflection, and there it was important to find ways in which knowledge can come out rather than necessarily imposing mythological framework of a particular kind. So there was a sense that maybe it’s not the methods that arenecessarily so different as much as the framing and awareness that forms PaR. Um there’s a feeling that one needed to articulate the questions and aims in a different medium to the one in which the research was taking place… and we talked about the anxiety about the dominance of words, um, the idea that language both enables and constrains, but that we are hung up on the idea of language constraining practice and maybe we need to get beyond that. And think of different ways in which verbal articulation could actually engage with what we’re doing. Um, then there was a feeling as well that articulation doesn’t have to happen in a verbal language, or in a written language, but could be in another medium, um, and it was a question of trying to find opportunities to liberate the knowledges that we develop.

Um, what makes PaR count as research is the articulation, but that’s not necessarily verbal, also the respective peer group is crucial, um, then we had a long discussion about the role of the peer groups. Peers we thought were a community of scholar artists, not necessarily just scholars but also professional artists, um, and we talked yesterday and today about the idea of bringing professional practitioners in as assessors of PaR, although there was a dispute about whether that would work in all disciplines. And then we also wondered whether this question should be turned around, but then realised that would take us another hour, if we were going to do that. What makes research count as practice?

Finally, five? No we’ve got another one, sorry. Question five, we thought we’d already discussed this within four, but we did, we were a bit concerned about the role of the public in all of this, and whether or not work has to reach further out towards a public than always focusing, focused within a group of peers. Um, and then there was a recognition that the fifth question is really about PhDs and research assessment, and, which is quite a pragmatic context that needs sorting through, and there it’s very difficult to actually see how the public could be brought in in order to assess and evaluate work.

We did think PARIP was crucial, that’s probably because we all want to come on another Hooley like this. (Laughter) We didn’t want administrators who had no understanding of practice in their own careers making these decisions. Um is practice a way of illuminating research, or is research a way of illuminating practice? Somebody explored the idea of giving a project as part of a research project, a specific aspect of that project to a performance group to go on and go through the ideas themselves, then there were two possibilities with that, either the research then comes back to the scholarly community who draws on the insights of the performance group, or the project becomes a collaboration between performance group and the scholars. And this was a question about where you locate what practice is doing and how it is contributing to knowledge.

I’m increasingly have the sense that I’m not making any sense (laughter) Keep going.

Concerns about the per group not being accountable, um, people were keen to stress that peers always act in the best interests of the group as a whole. That there needs to be somebody who mediates between the peer group and other contexts, and who can translate between different frames of reference. Assessors are sometimes called, assessors will sometimes record research value to work that is boring (laughter) –— but that’s a good thing! There needs to be a balance between openness and desire not to lose our discriminatory faculties. Um, and there’s, there was a concern that informal structures actually have too much power in these debates and if there were a more formal structure it might create a more level playing field. Um, another possible model, although we didn’t get very far down the route of discussing this, was the fact of the funding bodies, whereas it’s in fact the administrative business who are making decisions, on the basis of advice perhaps, but where those decisions are not actually divulged to a peer group at the same time.

And then question 6 which we called, question 7, err, we split this into three parts and I can’t remember the question so they came in order. Err, what was the question?

Robin Nelson: 6, does PaR include some form of disseminable reflection?


Robin Nelson: Or is the practice/performance/screening /contexts sufficient to stand as research outputs?

Probably not at the moment

Robin Nelson: And what might be the role of documentation across media

In ensuring the first thing that you said, for publicity and marketing purposes and for the purpose of sharing practice. And that was it..

Baz Kershaw: So now we’ve got virtual questions, as well, as well as the next group so, I’m not sure which number of group we’re up to, but it’s here.

Group 2/4

Um, we started off as group 4 and became group 2, and group 4 so maybe we’re group 6 except there already is a group 6 (laughter). Erm, a lot of what we covered has already been covered, but I guess that’s the purpose of a, a, thing like this, so I’m not gonna apologise for it. Um, we, we split the session in half, we spent the first half on more or less general discussion and then we came up with a certain number of action points so we didn’t address the questions but we didn’t not address the questions, um I hope it’s all relevant.

Um we talked a bit about the fact that the process, the actual process of making work, is so consuming that theory, whether you’ve done it before and you’re going to do it afterwards, is not something you focus on while you’re doing it. But at the same time, um, you, if you’ve the done the theory it is going to inform the practice, whether you specifically conscious of it while you are practising or not. Um, that, that led to um, a sense, that it’s important, not to separate theory and practice, because even if you’re not thinking consciously theoretically while you’re practising it’s still an important part of the process.

We asked a couple of questions, which I think we may have hinted at the answers of, be we didn’t specifically answer. At what point does a piece of work stand on it’s own as research? And what sort of work needs documentation to be read as a piece of work? Um, and that links in with the need to find some kind of way of exposing the work so I guess it connects with issues of dissemination. Um, because the difference between theory and PaR may well depend on who’s watching it. Um, that a general audience might well just watch the work whereas a specialised audience might be able to read the research, we did agree that maybe it would be rather dangerous if, eh, a non specialised audience could read the theory in the work, that the work might perhaps wouldn’t work as work, if a general audience read the theory, but I think I shouldn’t go any further down that route.

Um, there was a statement, that work is research if we name it or present it as such, but that is also a dangerous statement because if it isn’t read as such then stating it isn’t enough. Um, we did suggest at one point that it would be quite useful, were there to be another Hooley of this nature, um for those people present who are part of either the RAE process or the AHRB process, um to be in specific explicit dialogue about what, in as it were, practice they get and how they respond to what they get, in order that in trying to formalise some way of trying to describe what we do, we’re doing that in response, so there is actually a dialogue between what the RAE and the AHRB hear and respond to how, and what we present to the bodies like that.

Um, we also talked about the business of accessibility and relevance, um there is a danger that we will be seen as irrelevant if our research isn’t accessible to the wider public, which links into the other question about spectatorship.

Um, the next point which was actually the first thing that came up but I’ve put it last in my summary because I think it links into the action points quite well, is the whole thing about unity and diversity. Um, we arrived to discuss one thing but we’re discussing it from several different angles. Um it’s important that we continue to work together, it’s also important that we recognise that there are diverse, um, aims and diverse requirements within this group of people, and that diversity needs to be accepted and acknowledged and worked with at the same time as we are connecting with each other and baring in mind the commonalities. Um, one important thing that came out of that, and it was mentioned earlier by Pete I think was, that there is um, a sort of overt acceptance on the part of funding bodies of collaborative process on the one hand, but when push comes to shove there tends, there is an expectation that there will be one name on the outcome, and that it’s really important that that shifts because we’re all working in fields were collaboration is absolutely vital and if the funding bodies can’t find a way or we can’t find a way to convince them, um, to accept collaboration as valid research, then we have, what seems to me, speaking personally for a moment, to be the single biggest problem, about PaR.

Um, action points then. Err some of them are ideal, some of them are practical and some we are aware imply a body which may or may not exist and may or may not be big enough, but these are them anyway:

We should destabilise the binary between theory and practice. Um, we like a lot, the kind of speak that’s begun to emerge over the last 4 days, like theoretical practices, and that we should try and find that new speak as a way of describing what we are already doing.

We would like overt dialogue, possibly at the or a next conference, between people who can speak from RAE or AHRB experience. Um, subject associations need to discuss their own processes and consider how to distribute peer review systems.

That doesn’t actually make sense does it? Sorry, ah, but going back to the unity/diversity thing, it’s important that subject associations either existing or yet to be formed err, maintain a discussion about their own practice and also about the way that they disseminate that practice amongst themselves.

Um, it would be useful to have regional networks for screening review, possibly even assessment of practice based research, and a sort of, in brackets, should these networks be public, if accessibility is a factor?

Err, a couple of other things that came up as action points and turned out to be already in progress, but we left them as action points because we feel that they were important. Um, it would be useful to have case studies of PaR, perhaps particularly if those, um, case studies are collaborative, ah, we understand that PARIP is already putting such a database together, so that actual experience on actual projects can be maintained and accessed by other people who might be working in parallel um, fields. Connected with that is the, the desirability of a database of areas of research and also skill, because although it’s sort of interesting to know what other people are working on, it’s also useful to know what other people can do, it connects with a collaboration process. Inter-institutional collaboration was also suggested as a, as a useful way forward with a possibility of international connection between, I know its not really a group, it’s a research project, but between groups like PARIP and similar groups in other countries, which might also address the international, um, requirement for dissemination.

We discussed but couldn’t quite see how it would work, or whether it would be useful, but we think a discussion needs to be had about archiving. It relates to the process of, um, documentation of research, exactly what you would put in an archive if it’s not a complete record, would the archive be any use, but the notion that there perhaps could/should be some record of this kind of work, which would be accessible. Um, was suggested as a discussion point rather than perhaps an action point.

Um, we talked about the desirability of establishing contacts with other disciplines because there might be useful paradigms for PaR within unlikely areas, like science and cartography.

And I think, that does it, because I think the other two I’ve got down here I’ve already covered, so that’s group. What ever it was, 2 and 4 thank you.

Group 5

Jane Bacon: Um, we didn’t deal with the questions, we agreed to throw them out. We agreed, we’ve moved on. And that we could permit it to be um, outcome led at this stage, so these, these are some of the answers that I’ll try and briefly take you through. Um, and I, I’m aware that what we, um, although we highlighted that there may be two areas of thinking about this, um research, err, support systems for the research to keep us healthy, to feed the work that we do, but I think that the reality is that we focused primarily on the kind of political agenda, of the RAE, ah, and what’s required, and what, so that we’re speaking and um saying what we need in order to, for both PARIP to go forward in that kind of political arena and also in our, back to our institutions. So already we need to be building PARIP and whoever we are, building formal relationships with, erm, the panels of the RAE, er, in order to address some of the issues from the previous, before we get there, and I know those things are going on, but, particularly, things like, what happens to the individual scholars or people in conservatoires or other institutions where they are being excluded from RAE submission for a variety of reasons and that that needs to be addressed.

Er, that leads us to the possibility of dealing with, that PARIP can play a role perhaps, in some way creating documentation to help us deal with higher education institutions in er helping us to argue our case about how, err PaR can be valued if your in an institution where it isn’t particularly valued and you’re struggling to, erm, even be submitted or to have your practice valued and that we could gather documentation, err, to help enable that.

2, that the, in relation to the question of peer review, that’s come up over the weekend and also in relation to the notion of the local groups, that we have also talked about the possibility of screening/showing/sharing whatever that might be, and we’d like to see the, err, that working in regions, to begin with, err, in order to enable both the sharing of practice but also to begin to, facilitate discussion around that because we’re becoming very aware that in order to do, to have some sort of peer review system, whatever that might look like, that we wouldn’t want to jump into that, we’d want to go very carefully, think very carefully about it, test it out in a variety of ways, and that we might want to explore ways in which we can talk about the work feeling quite strongly that, what we managed not to do this weekend, is to yet again, to talk about the work. So how do we do that? What is the language we need in order to, to talk about the work, and set up those systems? So the regional groups will then become a starting point for those discussions, those sharing and that there may be some possibility that, err, we could seek out some funding for a system that would work, not regionally but nationally to set that system in place in terms of sharing work in order to then be much more proactive. Um, when we get to the next RAE to say that actually what we need is more than an A4 sheet of paper and this is what we’ve already started to do, that actually, um, we have tried this out, we have tested these possibilities, these languages work, this systems works, this system doesn’t whatever, so that we are seen to be much more proactive in that environment.

Errrrm, yes, and that, um and that we also, need to, um, look at other models in the same area, look at other models in other countries, so that we’re clear about other peer review systems and what the problems might be instead of trying to reinvent the wheel. Umm, that PARIP might play a role in gathering together documentation that would help government HEFCE, university administration/ departmental, so there is a body of material, resource material that will help us to, fight our case, whichever political area we need to be in. Uhh, and then we went back to the question of what we need in terms of, err, infrastructure for this research culture and talked about laboratories, err, do they need to be around subjects around themes, we would like to have the information gathered together. What kind of research laboratories already exist and what models are they working with? In order to then, ummm, establish a group of people who are already running laboratories so that we could fertilise those laboratories and to develop the good work that is happing there and to build on and to share the good practice across institutions and areas and to hopefully kind of build that idea. And within that we might need, umm, technician support, administrative support, um, and thinking about all the summer, ahhhh, space in institutions to help us again to fight the corner to convince the institutions that, er, its value added, that if they open their doors, to, to, their studio space, video editing suits, sound recording studios and this crosses over then to professionals, erm, which we were happy to leave aside, but to open the doors and to bring those interchanges out.

Umm, 7 what does it say? Yes. And after PARIP? So we wanted to know what happens after PARIP? Is there an after PARIP? Is it an association, is it a pressure group. Is it administrative, and do we need it? And we’d like to begin those conversations sooner rather than later, and then it says, local administration here…

Angela Piccini:The focus I think, didn’t we discuss that perhaps PARIP could become a multi-noded thing rather than a central thing, so pieces of the puzzle can come together that could be administrative, rather than as a research thing, but more as in administration.

Yeah, so that would then tie us back into the sort of, erm, the regional groups ending up as these nodes that become potentially peer support or peer review groups, um, and then that broke us into the sort of subject, as it should be subject, who’s voices being heard, who’s voice is being excluded? And then finally we said what about the International convention?

Baz Kershaw: Ok ah… is the last group, is there another group? Ah 6. I told you I couldn’t keep track.

Group 6

I can’t be bothered to move, is it alright if I stay here? Speak up? Can you hear me? Yeah, great, ok. So um, we left the question of epistemology and ontology, from when we were looking at those 6 questions we really did get into questions of ontology, epistemology and talked around them a lot and we thought these were still part of the big philosophical debates that will always be there, around PaR, err, but that we, err, didn’t actually want to spend time on them today. Otherwise every time we met we’d be discussing the big questions and never getting down to the smaller questions. I think that’s what other people have been doing.

Um….one of the things we stared with today was the Roberts report, and and the challenge it has to us to define what excellence is in research and PaR, we have the 5 criteria for assessment, and also how those criteria can be used to discriminate, in order to rank, various, various projects.

Um, and PARIP, amongst other institutions and everybody else, we need to agree on these criteria of excellence as far as we can. Um, and part of the process we need peer review and various, erm, modes, various networks of dissemination. So it’s a recommendation that we have from PARIP and other agencies to focus on criteria and assessment in determining of excellence. Um, one of the other things here was, what we started with yesterday was the idea that some of us might want to put in for research and funding from the AHRB to pursue a PaR project, whilst others might not, and err, it seems to me that there’s quite a lot of danger there, is that IF I’d been for AHRB funding, then I have, I put a research proposal into a process, which is quite a rigorous evaluation process. If I don’t get funding, whether my research succeeds or fails, it is already being validated externally as an appropriate research project. If I don’t go down that route, then at present there isn’t really any process that validates in the same way as a proposal so I always run the risk, then, of the research not being seen as valuable, or as important at that stage. So one of the obvious strategies of that would be for people who are writing this practice research proposal, or undertaking practice as research projects, to pay attention to the AHRB criteria, that won’t solve the problem but it will go some way to, easing it, so we need to develop ways of err, um, evaluating proposals through peer networks in some way.

Err, we did have a what happens when PARIP’s funding runs out? We left that hanging. Um, we picked on things that were about training for research supervisors in PaR, from Robin Nelson’s recommendations which are yet to be kind of discussed fully or explored, um, we thought that when those have been filed effectively they need to then be communicated to the AHRB, err, in some negotiated circumstance. So when the AHRB says yes, these are a model of good practice, this is a good way of thinking, then, um, that will give leverage with institutional vice chancellors or whatever in order to establish those practices. And at the moment its difficult to, there’s a lot of different practices going on in different institutions, different view points on PaR, but having something which is both a kind of 7 steps towards a good PaR PhD and then have that validated that in some way by the AHRB will put pressure on the, on the universities to fund supervisor training in those processes, in those steps.

Um, we, one of the things here also, think about this idea of the, there’s a lot, not lots, but there are a significant number of new PhDs in PaR and we need really to get those people on to supervising and examining as soon as possible, in the extent that they are the people who’ve been through this process and there needs to be this kind of shift over, this handover, we’d put quite a lot of pressure on them I guess as, um, quite a lot of high level responsibility, erm. And then, what’s our responsibility as established people within the academy, who have, who may have very strong PaR skills and profiles, how can we assist in this kind of, handing over? I’ve decided I’ve gotta go and take a practice-based PhD, because they do seem good. Um, that SCUDD and SCODHE, erm, can run seminars on aspects of PaR PhD training and this could be done in conjunction with Palantine, and this needs to kind of shift the general infrastructure.

We asked questions about training for assessors, training for supervision, training to be an examiner, all those kinds of things. Errrrr, also the sort of proposal, that people, so this is slightly different proposal than before, err, but connected to it. Part of this transition period, people who are supervising practice-based PhDs, when actually it’s not just transition it’s in the future as well, proposal that people supervising practice-based PhDs should be the only people who are external examiners on practice-based PhDs.

That is, err, if I’m not, not supervising practice-based PhDs, at the moment, then they shouldn’t really be external examiners, as they are not engaged in that day-to-day process of the problems of practice as research PhDs. And there’s so many things that need to be worked out there.

Um, ummmm, umm, also in terms of we had a report that the current AHRB is extraordinarily broad minded and are very interested in PaR. So it’s not um rigorous, not soft, but very interested in that as a process. So the AHRB in that sense shouldn’t be seen as the enemy, to PaR. Um, and then we had plenty of questions which we left unanswered. The big issue, or one of the big issues was, can the research be embodied in the artefact? And there was a sense that that would be different across different media but, that shouldn’t be used as a way of avoiding the question, until we’ve found some way of addressing that question at the moment. And ah, because of that the amount of focus on PaR PhDs we didn’t get very far in discussing what it meant for advanced research or how we might go on about advanced research. That will do for me. Thank you.

Baz Kershaw: Okay. Can I thank all of you in the working groups for arriving at such clear and lucid ideas for the future? Inevitably there was some overlap between the different reports back, partly because we started them all with the same set of questions which we now seem to have put to one side for the time being. But that overlap to me is where the potential for consensus lies as there’s plenty more to do in order to clarify what that consensus might mean. But it is very encouraging to see it coming out in the clarity in those reports back. So thank you all for, for bringing us that, err, position. Erm, inevitably this next bit, which will be three advisory group members, err, feeding back to you, will do some more over the same ground so I’m sure the three of us will be trying to edit what we’re saying, as we go along, partly to keep to time.

12 September 2003 | 13 September 2003 | Advisory Group feedback

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