Well, we have held our meeting for the first phase of the CARE project here in Falmouth, and as predicted, it was very interesting.
Firstly, on the night before we met our Birmingham participants that had traveled to Cornwall for the meeting for a meal the night before. This was a wonderful way of introducing people to each other in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere and people seemed to relax after the long journey. The project, of course, has a lot to do with talking and how to capture what people say as data; but it’s harder to capture atmosphere, and how that adds to or detracts from the sense people make of their own responses. (Maybe something for another project…)
In the morning all the participants, partners, advisors and the project team met in the AIR sandpit – a meeting room set up with several different data-collecting items: we recorded the audio of the conversations, Bryony took photos, and we had some screens that collected the notes we wrote on them – like this: wholegrouptalk
the first part of the morning was concerned with getting everyone to see the films from everyone, so we could all see what each other had been doing. Then Fiona and Deirdre both gave an introduction to the project – its aims and what had been done so far; and where we might all decide to take it in the future, should it continue to be funded. Deirdre talked about the project using powerpoints of two partnerships: Myrtle and Dawn (who were there) and Elsie and Rosie (who weren’t):
The next part of the day involved splitting into smaller groups to talk about what had gone well and what had not been so rewarding. The conversations were recorded both in terms of audio (again) and scribed as well. Here are the PDFs of the smaller group discussions:
This was a very interesting and useful part of the day, and thankfully our participants were honest enough to give us their true opinions. These opinions will allow us to really think hard about how to alter the model of working into Phase 2 (subject to funding). Sometimes it is hard to hear that your best intentions did not work out for people as you’d hoped (that old law of unintended consequences again…) – but all necessary and in fact much more useful as a resource for thinking about the project as a whole.
After lunch the advisors and partners continued on with their – well, advice – and concerns and also enthusiasms – again, very helpful. Here are the PDFs from that discussion:
The next step is to write the report which must go to AHRC to see if the funding for Phase 2 is allowed. If it is, then we commence with the second part of the project – still a process of research into a methodology that we hope allows people to reflect on and share skills across a number of boundaries.