I believe that communicating my research with the public is an important part of being an academic. I have used social media, journalism and artwork to do this. Details below.
Social Media and web presence
I use twitter and other platforms to reach out to external audiences – twitter username @emmarich45. I find this a particular useful way to keep up to date on developments in my related research fields. I also use social media to carry out research:
Invited speaker – GW4 Citizen Science workshop
Young people and citizen journalism – #media2012
During 2010-2012 I was involved with research in the South West of England as part of a broader project called #media2012 led by Professor Andy Miah which focused on creating a social media legacy for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. This involved two key research projects in the south west:
The first was undertaken with Liz Milner and Relays at Watershed (Bristol) and research partners in Weymouth, a venue for Olympic and Paralympic 2012 sailing competitions. A group of young people resident in Weymouth underwent training with sports writer David Goldblatt to learn how to be a ‘citizen journalist’ and produced a social media blog reporting on an Olympic Open Weekend which took place in Weymouth 23rd-24th July 2011 (http://weymouth2012.posterous.com/).
The second project (http://disability-sport.posterous.com/), involved the citizen journalism training of young people from city of Bristol College as part of research collaboration between University of Bath, City of Bristol College and Relays at Watershed on ‘Young People, Citizen Media and the Paralympics 2012’. This has involved young people interviewing, photographing, videoing and blogging about the build up to the London 2012 Paralympic Games. In addition to this, with the help of their course tutor Sacha Butterworth, the young people produced a short short film on disability sport which was screened as part of cultural festival at Weymouth at the ICCI which drew together a wealth of 360° images, video and animations from regional, national and international artists and film makers for presentation:
In both projects, smart phones and other mobile technology, such as iPads, were issued to participants to enable them to interview, blog and report on various aspects of the Olympic and Paralympic Games. Semi-structured interviews with these young people have explored their motivations for and experiences of being citizen journalists, focusing on the pedagogical flows and experiences from the learners’ perspectives.
These projects provide a rich insight into the pedagogical features of new media infrastructure given that the London 2012 Games coincides with scheduled targets set by the Digital Britain report and Race Online 2012, suggesting a new phase in media engagement within Britain. Projects like those described above examine how social media spaces can provide opportunities to challenge traditional Olympic narratives and function as critical forms of public pedagogy.
2014 – Fringe Arts Bath Festival: Body culture exhibition with Kerrie O Connell
In September 2011 some of my work on the Body and Physical Culture was the subject of an exhibition at the Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Insitution. Click here to view the Online Exhibition Book
Curated by Kerrie O’Connell
Body culture is an interdisciplinary contemporary art exhibition exploring young people’s relationship with their bodies within a culture of increased surveillance and body perfection. Thirteen artists have translated research findings of work by Dr Emma Rich, The University of Bath and colleagues from Loughborough University (Laura De-Pian, John Evans, Rachel Allwood) into forms of performance art, conceptual sculptures and photography. Amidst growing concerns about the rise in disordered eating and body dissatisfaction, the exhibition uses these various art forms to explore the impact of an increased focus on weighing, measuring and the surveillance on young people’s bodies.