Looking Back… to See How Far I’ve Come Already…

Looking Back… to See How Far I’ve Come Already…

The Scottish Graduate School for Arts & Humanities (SGSAH) and Scottish Graduate School of Social Science (SGSSS) have been invaluable to my PhD experience providing training in research approaches, methods, different ways of thinking about the world and technical training with courses on how to edit and write. I signed up for as many courses as I could fit in, as accessing any of these courses outside academia is difficult, costly, or nonexistent. (more…)

Questioning The Way We Do Culture in Scotland…

Questioning The Way We Do Culture in Scotland…

Matt Baker’s post on a New Approach to Culture in Scotland asks – “perhaps it is time to ask a fundamental question about the way we do culture in Scotland? Could we consciously support a culture of participation and popular ownership of culture as a key part of our national toolkit towards a just transition from both Covid and Climate Change?”

Reading this article leads to reflections on what I’ve observed in Paisley regarding where and how cultural activities meet health and wellbeing activities. Can I answer this question based on the snapshot my observations provide? From this vantage point, Paisley has an entwined approach of supporting community empowerment and the cultural ecology; both before Covid-19 and in response to the pandemic (for examples see here and here) and, starting from the principle that culture is created and experienced by everyone. (more…)

Fetching a Coat: Finding a Concept that Fits Arts, Culture, Health & Wellbeing

Fetching a Coat: Finding a Concept that Fits Arts, Culture, Health & Wellbeing

The search for concepts I feel comfortable with to describe arts, culture, health and wellbeing has been a long one. Theories and concepts have been described as a lens to see the world or a framework to scaffold the thesis. For me it has felt more like trying on many coats. It is not just the case of finding one that can help me get the job done, though it is helping me to progress my research. There are projects and services where I know there is a health and wellbeing impact but previously I didn’t have the lens to discern the mechanisms that ‘created’ health and wellbeing. It’s also a process of finding a lens that melds with the values I have and how I see the world; that I can be comfortable in and reflects how I want to encounter the world. The current coat is a quite new, it’s a little stiff, not yet snug. I’m not quite used to it and its possibilities. But, with time and some reflective journeys, I hope I can break it in make it my own. (more…)

Create Paisley’s Second Open Minds Summit

Create Paisley’s Second Open Minds Summit

CCSE were partners to the Open Mind Summit along with Future Paisley, Renfrewshire Leisure, Kibble. The second annual summit hosted by Create Paisley launched the day before World Mental Health Day. It explored the role of creativity and culture in improving mental health and wellbeing for children and young people. This year’s theme was ‘how can creativity help children and young people overcome isolation and loneliness’. (more…)

Fridays Can be Fun: Spring into Methods 2020

Fridays Can be Fun: Spring into Methods 2020

As an approach, co-production has increasingly come to the forefront, both in research and in design of services. This has led to greater attention and effort being made to draw on the knowledge of those with lived experience, whose voices count and, attempts to understand how they count. In September I had the great experience of assisting Beth Cross, David McGillivray, Jingyang Ai and Sandro Carnicelli to deliver a training course for PhD Students. (more…)