College Research Networks

Building networks to create interdisciplinary links and connections with those who use academic research is important to the College.  Learn more about our Equality Research Network, Dance Scholarship Oxford and The Brain and Mind - from concrete to abstact.

Our Equality Lecture Series brings academics, journalists and policy makers together to debate topics related to equality. One such event was the Women in Publishing Roundtable Discussion held in February 2016 with guest speakers Dr Sunny Singh (Author and Senior Lecturer on the BA in Creative Writing, London Met), Rachel Calder (Literary Agent) and Karen Shook (Book Reviews Editor at the Times Educational Supplement).

St Hilda's 'Mind the Gap' Equality Research Network is supported by the College as a forum for interdisciplinary scholarship on equality. It is led by Professor Selina Todd (History), Dr Rachel Condry (Criminology) and Sarah Green (Law). Building on the success of the network, Professor Todd has recently been awarded a £96,000 Fell Fund research grant to study the history of social mobility in modern Britain.

Dance Scholarship Oxford (DANSOX), founded by Professor Susan Jones, promotes dialogue between prominent academic disciplines and the worlds of dance theory and practice. Traditionally, dance has received less attention than other art forms. However, major interdisciplinary enquiries now show how movement, from routine to sophisticated dance practice, contributes to the wider understanding of our core subjects. Important questions in anthropology are dependent on the fundamental evidence provided by dance. Experts in neuro-scientific and medical fields draw on the knowledge of the trained dancer to investigate the physiological problems of what makes us move, and why. Such enquiries contribute to major research into the workings of the brain, to the development of prosthetics, to innovations in the field of mental health. Conversely, they also enhance the practice of choreography and dissemination of dance as communal activity in the modern world. These are fundamental intellectual questions stimulating reciprocal debate across disciplines. These ideas are disseminated through public events and workshops. The success of such events has led to the development of a hub for dance-related research activities based at St Hilda’s College.

The idea for the Brain and Mind – from concrete to abstract series of workshops was sparked by a lunchtime discussion between Dr Maike Glitsch (Fellow in Preclinical Medicine, St Hilda’s College) and Dr Anita Avramides (Fellow in Philosophy, St Hilda’s College). They discovered that they were interested in some of the same issues - in short, how the brain works and what this can tell us about the mind. Drs Glitsch and Avramides joined forces with the psychology tutors at St Hilda’s, Drs Ann Dowker and Stephen McHugh, to institute a series of interdisciplinary workshops. The idea behind the workshops is to propose a subject for discussion and then ask experts from different disciplines to say how they would approach that subject matter from their disciplinary perspective. The aim is to show the complex and multidimensional nature of the subject matter to hand. They finish with a roundtable discussion of the talks with the speakers. The talks are open to undergraduates and graduates of the University, members of the public, and A-level students from schools in and around Oxford.

The St Hilda's Feminist Salon is a a space to bridge the gap between feminist theory and practice, and to discuss the complexities of feminism today. Historically, salons have been a force for women’s education and disseminating and debating progressive political ideas. Contemporary feminism is vibrant, challenging and riddled with conflicts. At the twice-termly salons, an invited guest host from feminist academia, art or activism decides on the format. A range of exciting speakers from the cutting edge of feminist theory, art and activism are invited to host. Each salon is different and people who are unable to attend can participate by sending in questions via twitter or facebook.

The Body and Being Network is an interdisciplinary initiative that brings together scholars and artists for innovative dialogues about the body. Co-founded by Karin Eli (University of Oxford) and Anna Lavis (University of Birmingham), the network instigates and supports collaborative encounters between scholars and performing artists. It challenges participants to develop analyses that involve their own embodied experiences. Speakers and performers include actors, storytellers, choreographers, visual artists, and scholars (across disciplines).

Women in Publishing Roundtable Discussion, February 2016Kim Brandstrup with dancers and Professor Susan Jones following his  Lecture and Choreographic Workshop 'Mapping Motion: impulse, object, and trajectory'