Surprises in statistics

By Dana Thomson and Dan Devine

Dana Thomson (Social Stats & Demography) and Daniel Devine (Politics & International Relations) – looked at creating a visual representation of the overlap of datasets and quantitative terminology, across disciplines that apply social statistics, to identify where research gaps are and where there is room for more collaboration.

Our contribution was motivated by our experience in a class together; we both took statistics, but coming from different disciplines (political science and public health), we used different terminology for the same techniques, leading to unnecessary confusion and problems in dealing with the course. Our initial thought was to create some form of ‘dictionary’ or reference tool to iron out these issues, but we soon expanded into the area of survey research. We were interested in what similarities and differences there were in both methodology and data collection, and who (if anyone) has successfully combined the two.

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Mutually Intelligible? The project /collaboration – How they did it

By Linda Baines and Paul Kelly

This blog post explains and reflects on how two researchers collaborated in Opposites Attract. The text incorporates both Paul and Linda’s words.

Finding a starting point
Linda and Paul held an initial Skype call to explore their research interests and they found that they talked for more than an hour. The objectives developed from conversation, whereby the theory and the practice could be considered as the aims took shape. So it seemed that some kind of “talking heads” where we explored our mutual interest in changes in higher education would be an ideal fit. On reflection, they realised that this could offer other possibilities, such as analysing all our conversation to discover the main themes and issues.

Paul had attended a video production workshop with Public Policy at Southampton, and he suggested that they should make a short film and record the audio. This was agreed in the Skype call and fleshed out in subsequent emails.

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Mutually Intelligible? – Getting involved in Opposites Attract

By Linda Baines and Paul Kelly

This post reflect the experience of two researchers’ involvement in Opposites Attract – how they came participate in Opposites Attract, what they feel they brought to it, their experience of being involved and plans for any next steps. The text incorporates both Paul and Linda’s words.

The Researchers
Paul Kelly is currently based in Southampton Education School, carrying out ESRC-funded doctoral research on the marketisation of universities in the context of recent policy developments in Higher Education. His thesis explores the use of inter-explicative methods in case study research, focusing specifically on the relationship between social sciences and the humanities. He has previously worked as a lecturer in the Centre for Language Study at Southampton.

Linda Baines worked for a long time for a research council in a variety of senior management roles. She completed her PhD (“Exploring Responsible Knowledge Exchange”) at Southampton Business School in February 2016. Her doctoral research explores interconnections between knowledge exchange (a role which universities and PSREs have assumed alongside research and teaching), Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and ethics.

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Welcome to the Opposites Attract Collaboration Challenge blog.61819_Poster_DoctoralResearch_JessicaPhipps_COMMS_A3_WEB

The challenge, which brings together researchers from different areas to team up and explore how they might collaborate, is part of our inaugural Festival of Doctoral Research.

Organised by the Doctoral College, we are delighted to announce that we have 5 pairs of researchers who are now working their socks off to create something to present at the Festival’s Closing Reception on Friday 27th May, 2016.

This blog will follow their progress, documenting their experience as they discover how their research areas can be brought together.

We hope you enjoy their journey!