Putting Theory to Work

Recently a delegation from Public Pedagogies Institute attended the Manchester Metropolitan University’s 5th International Summer Institute in Qualitative Research: Putting Theory to Work (10th July – 14th July 2017). This biannual conference enables a unique opportunity for researchers from all over the world and disciplines to meet, learn and talk about theory as it relates to the work we do as researchers.

Throughout the event we engaged with various ways to engage and interact with theory. With a mix of keynote presentations, smaller group presentations and artistic responses to provocations that promoted the folding in of theory into creative output. These daily experiences promoted socially constructed art works that fold in and through each other; through discourse, arts methods and theoretical statements that ask ‘what happens when we think theoretical concepts in intra-action with materials and art-based propositions?’

A range of theoretical discussions where engaged with through the variety of forums that were pedagogically rich democratic and polyphonic. Many voices from across the globe that came together to teach and learn  found in the heart of Manchester, UK.

Mary Dixon, Karen Charman, Matthew Thomas and Jayson Cooper attended on behalf of the Public Pedagogies Institute where they shared a presentation that wove their voices and experiences together to create a tapestry of pedagogical discussions from being involved in the Public Pedagogies Institute’s 2016 Footscray Pop Up School. They each gave a 20 minute presentation that together sang the polyphonic nature of the Pop Up school. Speaking a new educational experience (a growing theoretical understanding of education consciousness) each of the presentations expressed the theoretical as it was put into practice through this one day event.

Exploring the plural pedagogical aims of local communities and the enrichments that come from such dialogue, the PPI presentation promoted wide discussion on public pedagogy, Australian identity and community expression.