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A radical research perspective: Co-producing research with young people - by Prof Kate Pahl


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Prof Kate Pahl presented this talk at the Manchester Creative Margins event

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A radical research perspective: Co-producing research with young people - by Prof Kate Pahl

  1. 1. A radical research perspective Co-producing research with young people Kate Pahl, Manchester Metropolitan University
  2. 2. How can we know about what young people think or feel? We need a methodology that listens to young people in a more situated way. Language based methods do not capture the way in which things are embodied in the rhythm of continuing life Young people use film, music, dance, poetry, writing, creative arts, and other modes of engagement to speak what they feel
  3. 3. Modes of Engagement
  4. 4. The school where I studied I passed by the school where I studied Most of my life and I said in my heart: Here I am today and didn’t stop. All my life I have loved growing up and Learning different things I wish I could go back in time and re-do all my mistakes. (Courtney)
  5. 5. Giving up our ideas • If we are to take children’s epistemologies seriously, we have to give up our own, sometimes clever sounding, academic ideas. • Robbie: ‘She said we could be like messing about a bit and show who we really are for the cameras not like, we weren’t to pretend who somebody were not, we had to show who we are’ (Robbie, group discussion 13 July 2010).
  6. 6. It’s a different kind of work Courtney: You have got to do work. Kate: It’s a different kind of work. Robbie: It’s still work though.
  7. 7. Time and school Kate: You said something else about drama and in between… Courtney: When you are in drama you can act out but you can also act out in school it's about spending your life, and its is not just about drama you can just live your life. Kate: Across the school day.
  8. 8. Connected Communities Programme Aim To research ‘community’ with, by and for communities • Understanding the changing nature of communities in their contexts, and the role of communities in sustaining and enhancing our quality of life Through… • Interdisciplinary research with a strong arts & humanities element • Collaborative research with communities at all stages of the research process
  9. 9. Re-thinking university and community partnerships • We need to think differently about university/community knowledge production practices • Dialogic model of knowledge production • Knowledge is ‘living’ and enacted and felt within multimodal representations • Disciplines do not help – knowledge is community situated and experienced (Rasool 2017)
  10. 10. Who is the expert? • Academics can sometimes get in the way • The ‘only we can know what is really going on’ mode devalues other people (e.g. teachers, young people) • If young people’s perceptions are treated seriously they then frame the ways we think about things • This enables different kinds of changes to happen.
  11. 11. How can we find out what young people know? • Re-situate agency differently • Recognise that methods are contested and language doesn’t always work • Work with what young people do already do in their everyday lives
  12. 12. • Co-production done well repositions who holds power, it enables young people to have agency within the project, to participate as themselves and places their knowledge at the centre. This is why pursuing an agenda of coproduction has been so important: it generates a different ‘living knowledge’.
  13. 13. Thanks to • Andrew McMillan • Vicky Ward • Hugh Escott • Steve Pool • Keri Facer • Zanib Rasool • Gooseacre School • Marcus Hurcombe, Rotherham Youth Service