Week 1 – 15th to 19 Feb 16

I’ve decided to go full time the first semester in order to get into the head space proper and to quickly resolve the coursework component that I can focus on my research.

The roller coaster ride continues…silent moments gardening in the backyard help me to reflect a bit on the the main thesis topic. The longer and more I read I become for reassured that the topic should evolve around the claim/ theory that active child play is a key indicator for healthy neighbourhood design.

After many meetings and discussions over the last week with other fellow researchers and working through several literature reviews on the topic- I become more convinced that its is not about different risk factors such as physical activity, obesity or overweight as it is more about social determinants in neighbourhoods. They are vital to making a neighbourhood prosper and healthy.

With regards to the methodology I feel that I am progressing from my original outline in my initial proposal. In particular I am getting my head around incorporating the creative part into the overall approach. The paper “Five Misunderstandings about Case-study research” was excellent and reassured my approach. Ludwig Wittgensteins metaphor was outstanding:

“In reaching you philosophy I’m like a guide showing you how to find your way around London. I have to take you through the city from north to south, from east to west, from Euston to the embankment and from Piccadilly to the Marlbe Arch. After I have taken you many journeys through any given street a number of times- each time traversing the street as part of a different journey. At the end of this you will know London; you will be able to find your way about like a born Londoner. Of course, a good guide will take you through the more important streets more often than he takes you down side streets; a bad guide will do the opposite. In philosophy I’m a rather bad guide.” (Gasking and Jackson, 1976, cited in Flyvbjerg 2006 p. 239)

Source:

Flyvbjerg, Bent (2006) Five Misunderstandings About Case-Study Research, Qualitative Inquiry, Volume 12, Number 2, Sage Publications DOI:10.1177/1077800405284363

Gasking, D. A.T., & Jackson, A.C. (1967) Wittgenstein as a teacher. In K.T. Fann (Ed.), Ludwig Wittgenstein: The man and his philosophy (pp. 49-55). Sussex, UK: Harvester Press.

This weeks creative research course was “interesting” experience. I am still figuring out if it would provide useful information relating to my research objectives or does it drive me into a different direction. On a positive note it provides me the opportunity to read through some policies relating to ERA guidelines. Course aim is to enhance presentation skills on creative research and submit a 2000 word grant proposal. Overall the course seems to be designed for undergrads which will certainly offers value for them. Time will tell.

Some of my activities this week are:

  • Thesis presentation session
  • Research in creative arts and design
  • Introducing the doctoral research skill portfolio
  • Endnote for Research session
  • Research design course
  • supervisor meeting

Focus for the next few weeks- more reading, making use of mind maps, clustering literature and getting on top of Endnote.

 

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