What was the event?
‘Identity, Values, and Elections across Europe’ was a NWSSDTP funded one day interdisciplinary conference aimed at early career researchers (ECRs), co-produced by the Democracy & Elections (D&E) and Comparative Public Policy & Institutions (CPPI) research clusters at the University of Manchester. It was co-organised by James Griffiths and Louise Wylie (Politics) of the University of Manchester and took place on Friday 27th September. The event consisted of three panels of three ECRs presenting their work, with each panel centred on one of the three themes of the conference, and a keynote talk from Professor Maria Sobolewska.
Thanks to the NWSSDTP Internship scheme, I spent my summer in Milton Keynes – the famed land of roundabouts and concrete cows. I had learnt that the grid layout in Central Milton Keynes, and its central street, Midsummer Boulevard, are orientated along the line of the sun on midsummer’s day, and this combination of modernism with ‘60s hippy spiritualism had sparked my curiosity. My presumption was that if any of the original architects of MK were still around, I’d find them on the night of the summer solstice somewhere along Midsummer Boulevard. Sadly this didn’t work out, but I had much more luck attending an evening nature walk in a rainy wood run by the MK Natural History Society: this was where I began to get to know some very welcoming and genuine characters who maintain what is between them a substantial oral history of the development of Milton Keynes, some of which is now getting written down.
This funded Interdisciplinary event was organised by Sofia Doyle, Marion Greziller, Louise Wylie (Politics) and Abigail Bleach and Tania Shew (English), University of Manchester.
The event was a one day conference and activism day on International Women’s Day 8th March 2019, titled ‘Studying Gender in the Wake of #MeToo’. The event brought together activists, PhD students, early career researchers and members of the public to discuss issues pertinent to gender and the academy. The event included a roundtable on Women’s Experiences in Academia, and two panel sessions entitled ‘Resisting Institutional Violence’ and ‘Research and Activism Across Europe’. After these sessions, the day concluded with a feminist zine making workshop run by a local feminist activist and zine making specialist, where we explored alternative ways to represent our research and personal experiences of gender, the university, and the #MeToo movement.
Young people’s well-being and autotelic practices: a narrative and go-along inquiry of youth activities
The research process so far has been a rollercoaster of emotions and progress, though I am sure that I am not alone in this. Stepping into the second year of a PhD is daunting but exciting as preparation for data collection is underway and there is hope that the answers to the questions become nearer. For many, the start of the year will be filled with ethics and one can only hope that it takes one attempt! My ethics, however began back in March… 6 months into the PhD and a little earlier than most!