The ESRC Festival of Social Science: Celebrating Social Science Outreach and Impact at The University of Salford

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Nationwide the month of November will see a plethora of events taking place to showcase and celebrate the fantastic research being undertaken by Social Scientists across the United Kingdom. The primary theme of the festival is Climate Change and many of the events taking place at the University of Salford are linked to the forthcoming COP26 meeting taking place in Glasgow. (See here for details) In addition to this focus our academics are also showcasing their work on in a variety of areas including: the  We Love Peel Park Project A Hazard Signs Interactive Intervention; and Social Capital: Understanding its Value in Strengthening Resilience. Details of the workshops and panels can be found below.

All events are open to the general public and the academic audiences, to register your place book here:

We Love Peel Park: Graphic Novel Launch, 18th November 2021, 18.00 – 19.30

What’s on offer?

A 45-minute panel discussion, presenting the world premiere of a collaboratively produced graphic novel, written and illustrated by local people to explore the past and present of Peel Park. This will be an informal “show and tell” presentation with the opportunity to interact with and ask questions of the authors and illustrators. Following the discussion, there will be an optional round-table event in which participants and presenters are invited to reflect and develop ideas for future projects.

What’s it about?

Salford University Community Creative Exchange brings together local people and University students and staff. During lockdown, we found that socially distanced creative conversations in Peel Park were a fantastic way of keeping connected and supporting our wellbeing. From those walks and talks came our collective vision to explore the history and ecology of Peel Park, to showcase its importance for human and non-human visitors, and its ongoing role in our environment as a precious green space. We will be sharing for the first time the artwork and interweaving stories which we’ve produced to celebrate our park. Authors and illustrators will introduce their contributions, explaining their collaborative process, which uses the concept of the Common Third as a way of bringing people together through a shared creative purpose. This work comes from a very special partnership between local charity, Loaves and Fishes, creative facilitator Ziggy’s Wish, and students and staff from the University of Salford. Attendees will be invited to view the novel, chat with its creators, learn more about Peel Park, and have the opportunity to get involved with future Creative Exchange projects.

Who’s leading the event?

Dr Ursula Hurley, Senior Lecturer in English and Creative Writing at the University of Salford and Helen Tattum, Senior Support Worker at Loaves and Fishes

Pirates and Exploding Man! A Hazard Signs Interactive Intervention, 23rd November 2021, 10.00 – 12.00

What’s on offer?

An interactive, participatory challenge to identify the meaning of a series of Globally Harmonised System hazard warning signs; then a presentation to ensure understanding of the correct meaning, with click-voting on which signs will be shown on a variety of products. There will also be a link to an ongoing study for further participation.

What’s it about?

Accidental poisoning in young children is a major problem globally. Unfamiliar symbols are interpreted according to what is familiar; often wrongly. Children show a more imaginative and credulous approach. Primary school children are at intense risk of accidental poisoning and burn injury so this programme will check understanding of hazard signs, and then increase understanding and awareness in both children and adults in order to keep children safe. A version of this programme can be experienced in a fun, interactive way. WARNING: Adults perform no better than children in this activity!

Who’s leading the event?

Tony Long, Professor of Child & Family Health, University of Salford.

Andrew Rowland, Professor of Children’s Rights, Law, and Advocacy, University of Salford.

Supported by students from a Salford high school.

Social Capital: Understanding its Value in Strengthening Resilience, 29th November 2021, 10.00 – 12.00

What’s on offer?

The online event includes a 45-minute presentation (talk, slides, film/photos). This will be followed by a Q&A from the audience (including poll questions) and time to present conclusions.

What’s it about?

Social capital has proven to have a positive impact on the sustainability of SMEs (Small and Medium Enterprises). We will present our research outcomes on social capital utilising a case study from craft hand-made furniture industries abroad. We will discuss how these outcomes are applicable in the UK craft cultural industry. The topic will focus on the path from craft to industry production. The event will present some insights into how social capital can contribute to the resilience and sustainability of SMEs. Social capital (in the forms of trust, networks, norms) is a vital part of our personal and professional life. How can we understand its value and what impact does it have on individuals’ wealth and well-being, and the economic growth of communities, regions, and cities?

Who’s leading the event?

Prof Hisham Elkadi, School of Science, Engineering and Environment, University of Salford, will lead and open the event.

Presentations will be given by Nourhan Heysham and Dr Maria Yioutani Iacovides, University of Salford.

Other Events

Salford’s contribution to the Festival of Social Science will also focus on Climate Change (See here for details) with the following events:

  • COP26 Universities LIVE: 8th November 2021, 17.00 – 18.00 and 15th November 2021, 17.00-18.00
  • Motherload: E-cargo Bikes for Low-Carbon Family Transport, 10th November 2021, 18.00 – 19.00
  • Climate Change Conspiracies and Covid, 13th November 11am-1pm
  • Cognitive Restoration: The Effects of the Environment on Thinking, 27th November 2021, 10.00 – 17.00

The Festival of Social Science will also focus on Autism (See here for details) with the following events:

  • The Autistic Defendant in the Courtroom, 11th November 2021, 13.00 – 16.30
  • Exercise, Sleep and Word-Learning in Autistic Children, 14th November 2021, 15.00 – 16.30