I have been extremely busy in the last couple of months. To give a flavour of life as a researcher, at least where I work, here is a snap shot of my working life. I am in the process of completing the evaluation of the TE3 project, this has been a fascinating insight into what appears to have been a really successful multi-university collaboration looking at technology enhanced enterprise education (hence the three Es). Well on Monday evening, following a flying visit to London to hear the HEA and nesta research findings of creative entrepreneurship I am off to Lancaster to the Symposium: Engaging HEIs in business and the community: A learning perspective where I will be presenting a paper co-authored with Dr Kelly Smith from Birmingham University. I am back in Birmingham from Thursday and hoping to get back on track with some of my other projects specifically the MA in Media Enterprise course which I am involved in some research work - you may recall the Creative Enterprise conference last year, we are now in the process of putting together a follow up conference for next year (please do email for any info) as well as this I am going back to the students to interview them as part of my tracking their progress.
Last week I was in Sardinia on a study visit for the Agender project (Challenging gender stereotypes in the work place). Apart from 30 degree blue sky conditions we got taken on a tour of various incubator projects and university spin-offs, a trip to Tiscalli's head quarters and all the projects we were taken around had a focus on supporting women and in most instances in new technologies or entrepreneurship. Sardinia have similar issues to the West Midlands in terms of graduate retention but very high unemployment, currently 10%. It's interesting some of the schemes they have for attracting ex-Sardinians back. While away I got an email through from EQUAL works an organisation that flag up good practice that the funding has generated (the ESF EQUAL funding that funded the Agender project). I was a little surprised to see this little gem (apparently I don't look like this in real-life... I do hope not).
Other things that are bubbling under and which I will no doubt mention in more depth soon are the 'post graduate researcher teaching course' I am doing, a possible cross-faculty project I have some involvement in and service design - a new project for the university which I am learning more about.
And breath....oh yes my PhD 14 x hours per week. I think my daughter thinks my laptop is attached to me!