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Event guide

A guide to all the events that took place in at the Festival of Social Science 2018.

Schedule

5 November 2018

Organiser: Dr. Constantino Dumangane Jr.

What traits do you look for in a friend? It might be a shared interest, such as a love of football. Alternatively it could be a good sense of humour, a similar outlook on life, or a shared experience - such as growing up in the same village. Other traits that you might value include kindness, trustworthiness and loyalty.

For the past six years the WISERD Education project has been following the lives of children and young people in Wales. The researchers have conducted an annual survey of over 1,000 young people each year, following them all from the beginning of secondary school in Year 7 to when they leave school (from Years 11 to 13). The point of the survey was to increase our understanding of the lives and educational experiences of young people in Wales.

At this event, researchers explained more about the survey to young people from Fitzalan High School in Cardiff, as well as discussing what the survey has shown about the traits young people look for in their friendships.

The interactive event also taught young people about the methods social scientists use, and how the survey data collected from them is analysed and used to inform social science research. In addition to engaging young people in research about themselves, this event tried to encourage more young people to consider a future career in the social sciences.

6 November 2018

Organiser: Thomas Leahy

2018 marked the 20th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement in 1998. The Northern Ireland conflict led to 3,600 deaths and over 40,000 serious injuries in mainland Britain and Ireland. The conflict and peace process was a defining moment in modern British and Irish history.

To commemorate this special anniversary, Dr Thomas Leahy from Cardiff University chaired two panel debates reflecting on why peace finally emerged in Northern Ireland in 1998.

Organiser: Scott Orford

At this event, researchers at the Wales Institute of Social and Economic Research, Data and Methods (WISERD) demonstrated how to use the WISERD Data Portal to access and map the huge amount of social and economic data that is freely available from the UK and Welsh governments.

The event was aimed at third sector organisations, civil society users and policymakers. Attendees were invited to share how they have used the Data Portal in their own research. The demonstration was followed by a question and answer session where attendees provided feedback on the Data Portal.

7 November 2018

This event looked at how European migrants contribute to civil society in Wales.

Researchers from Aberystwyth University and Roehampton University discussed the findings of a research project (carried out between 2016 and 2017) which looked at various ways in which European migrants are involved in civil society organisations and activities in different parts of Wales.

The project also explored how participating in civil society affects migrants’ sense of belonging. The event brought together a range of stakeholders to discuss the lessons from this research, and how they could be used to inform policy and practice.

The event included a panel discussion and question and answer session where practitioners talked about their experiences of EU migration and civil society. It explored new ideas and ways of thinking about migration and civil society, with a focus on common experiences, practices and challenges. The event was aimed at third sector workers and policy makers.

8 November 2018

Organiser: Peter Gee

The School Health Research Network is a network of secondary schools in Wales that have joined with researchers, the Welsh Government and other organisations to support young people’s health and wellbeing.

Teachers and students from the School Health Research Network were invited to participate in interactive and engaging sessions showcasing the new National Student Advisory Group and demonstrated different methods for using the tailored Public Health School reports.

The sessions aimed to offer continued professional learning for teachers, by demonstrating how to use data from the School Health Research Network in classrooms, especially in GCSE maths, statistics, human geography and sociology lessons. The event also aimed to showcase, trial and engage students with the three involvement techniques developed for the National Student Advisory Group.

The intention was to identify any limitations and constraints of the techniques, which would be key to refining the structure of the National Student Advisory Group. It would also allow the development of a programme to provide to schools illustrating how to use the School Health Research Network data and research in their lesson plans.

Organiser: Emmajane Milton

What is ‘research’, and how can it help teachers and educational professionals in their practice?

This interactive workshop session created a space for free and frank debate about the value of research to inform and support educational practice in Wales. The session addressed the conflicted understandings among professionals about what ‘research’ is, and the resources and sources of expertise required to support teachers and educational professionals as enquirers.

Organiser: Thomas Leahy

2018 marked the 20th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement in 1998. The Northern Ireland conflict led to 3,600 deaths and over 40,000 serious injuries in mainland Britain and Ireland. The conflict and peace process was a defining moment in modern British and Irish history.

To commemorate this special anniversary, Dr Thomas Leahy from Cardiff University chaired two panel debates reflecting on why peace finally emerged in Northern Ireland in 1998.

Organiser: Kelsey Frewin

It can be challenging to know which sources to trust when it comes to understanding child development. Wouldn’t it be great to learn more about children’s social, emotional and mental growth from expert researchers and scientists? Attendees were invited to spend an evening with researchers from the recently launched Cardiff University Centre for Human Developmental Science (CUCHDS) and School of Psychology to  step inside the minds of children.

9 November 2018

Organiser:  Wil Chivers

In September 2017 workers from two McDonald’s restaurants went on strike – the first industrial action since the restaurant chain opened in the UK in the 1970s. Staff from the restaurant chain TGI Friday’s have also recently gone on strike, in the UK's first dispute over tipping. What are the causes of these strikes, and how have they been organised?

At this event, academics from Cardiff University discussed the findings of their current research into the recent strikes by McDonald’s and TGI Friday’s employees in the UK. The researchers have followed the progress of these strikes as they have developed over nine months, online and at the picket lines.

Their findings indicated these strikes are drawing in a new generation of trade union members, and that social media have played a crucial role in raising awareness of the strikes and the issues they are challenging.

The workshop was designed for trade union officials and activists who wanted to develop their understanding of the strategic use of social media in trade union organising.

The two hour workshop covered:

  • An analysis of how social media was used in the recent McStrike campaign
  • Information of how different trade unions currently use social media
  • Practical activities which explore effective trade union social media activity.

9 and 10 November 2018

Organiser: Matthew Quinn

Place holds meaning and memories. Place is where we interact with others and with the physical and natural world. Place makes real the complex connections between environment, society and economy.

In this programme of interactive events and exhibitions, Cardiff University’s Sustainable Places Research Institute showcased current international research about sustainable place-making, and highlighted examples of innovative work being undertaken by civil society organisations in Wales.