Knowledge Exchanges

Writing on the wall: 'Our Stories shape our Spaces and our Spaces shape Us '

Within the Connected Communities programme emphasis has been placed on the development of actionable knowledge that bridges rigorous academic analysis, policy agendas and community relevance and engagement. While acknowledging the value of each different perspective, it is also necessary to develop knowledge that comes from comparison, collaborative reflection and evaluation, and, cross-pollination of approaches, and, to develop useful methods and strategies form meaningful analysis, as well as representation and dissemination that will advance academic research, community practice and policy debates.

Our collaboration and approach in this project is unique in that it seeks to advance the exchange of perspectives adopted by the different approaches and to promote an agenda for the evaluation of asset mapping across the humanities, arts and social sciences, both as a research methodology and as a co-design/coproduction tool supporting collective/community engagement and action. It brings together Connected Communities projects from the Open University and the Royal College of Art, and the Universities of Keele, Leicester and Brunel. We have worked with community partners such as The Glass-House, and Young Vic Theatre in the UK and with several initiatives in Greece.

Our methodologies have tapped into narrative and theatre, cultural animation and digital story-telling, group discussion and creative visualisation, participatory chartography and game-playing and brings together philosophical perspectives from American Pragmatism, design studies and informatics, community media and citizen journalism, and fields of action in relation to placemaking and neighbourhood planning, creative networks and volunteerism.

The project’s innovative mode of delivery includes sharing knowledge and resources among existing CC projects through field research trips, knowledge exchange with other research projects and experiential workshops where we will co-design approaches for exploring the application of asset mapping in wider and transnational contexts.

We will disseminate our findings in workshops, through this website and other outputs. Our ultimate aim is to develop meaningful syntheses, processes and tools around asset based approaches across different contexts.