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Together We Create Podcasts

Exploring the benefits and challenges of interdisciplinarity, UCL social scientists share their reflections and top tips for collaborating with researchers from across the disciplinary spectrum

Series 2: what UCL's social scientists gain from collaborative partnerships 

In this series four UCL social scientists, who were awarded one of our Social Science Plus awards, talk about their pilot projects and what they gained from their cross-disciplinary partnerships.  We hear about the complexities of living in outer space and on other planets, the issues surrounding E-scooters, children’s experience of social media and unsolicited sexual images, and the social life of environmental data.  Scroll down this page for the podcasts, transcripts, and associated links. 

  • Episode 1: Introducing Series 2 of Together We Create - what UCL’s social scientists gain from collaborative partnerships - watch the audiogram
  • Episode 2: Off-world living - watch the audiogram
  • Episode 3: Children’s experiences of social media and unsolicited sexual images: Developing Better Digital Literacy - watch the audiogram
  • Episode 4: E-scooters and the transport related social exclusion - watch the audiogram
  • Episode 5: Environmental data justice

Series 2 of Together We Create series was hosted by Dr. Lili Golmohammadi (Research Fellow, IN-TOUCH project, UCL Knowledge Laband produced by Matt Aucott (Educational Media, UCL) and Cerys Bradley.  

  • Scroll down below the Series 2 interviews for Series 1

Episode 1: Introducing Series 2 of Together We Create
- what UCL's social scientists gain from collaborative partnerships

What do we mean when we talk about collaborative social science? Why is collaborative research useful? What are the standout themes of the collaborative projects featured in this second season of Together We Create? In this episode, we discuss these questions and more with Professor Carey Jewitt, Chair of UCL's Collaborative Social Science Domain. 

Carey Jewitt is Professor of Technology and Learning at the UCL Knowledge Lab, based in the Department of Culture, Communication and Media at the Institute of Education. She brings her interdisciplinary training from fine art and media, sociology, and multimodal discourse to research how the use of digital technologies shapes people’s interaction, communication, and learning in a variety of contexts. 

Links

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Episode 2: Off-world living

The practical challenges of surviving harsh environments and limited resources in outer space have long been a focus of space research. But how might asking questions about living differently in space help us meet the challenges of living differently on earth? In this episode, we explore this with Dr Aaron Parkhurst as he discusses his multidisciplinary approach to studying ‘off-world living’. From Martian homes to exercise trampolines and funeral practices, we discuss the benefits of bringing together researchers from anthropology, architecture, art, design, cardiovascular science, molecular biology, psychiatry, and sustainable construction to open thinking about living well and the need, not only to survive, but to thrive. 

Aaron Parkhurst is an Associate Professor in medical anthropology at UCL.  His work combines interests in science and genetics, cyborgs, the body and technology, and immigration, to address the complex challenge of how we might live differently on earth and beyond. 

Links

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Episode 3: Children’s experiences of social media and unsolicited sexual images: Developing Better Digital Literacy

In this episode, UCL’s Professor Jessica Ringrose shares her research on unsolicited sexual images on Snapchat, a social media platform which plays a central role in the lives of many teens. We discuss how this work uncovered high rates of non-consensual image sharing and led to the establishment of cyber flashing as a new criminal offence in the UK’s 2023 Online Safety Bill. We also explore how collaborating with young people, crime scientists, sex education charities, and policy makers, and the use of participatory arts-based methods, were key to uncovering children’s experiences of social media and achieving more equity and social justice in their lives.  

Jessica Ringrose is Professor of the Sociology of Gender and Education at UCL’s Institute of Education. She is a co-director of the UCL Centre for Sociology of Education and Equity and runs the Feminist Educational Engagement Lab with her doctoral students. She also co-runs the ‘Post-digital Intimacies’ research network, which looks at experiences in social media. 
 

Links

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Episode 4: E-scooters and the transport related social exclusion

E-scooters provoke a 'Marmite' love or hate response in many of us. Still being piloted across UK cities, they straddle an uncertain legislative space, with concerns around safety not far from the headlines. Yet there are other important questions raised by this still-emergent form of transport.  

In this episode, we speak with Dr Daniel Oviedo about the multifaceted dimensions of transport-related social exclusion: from affordability, to fear, discrimination and more. We discuss the conditions that may allow or prohibit people from using E-scooters – a form of transport important to social development, connection, and Daniel argues wellbeing. We explore how working with researchers from sociology, behaviour change, sustainable transport and industrial engineering – and various stakeholders with local authorities, TFL, and Innovate UK, helped to conceptualise a more inclusive policy approach for E-scooters.  

Daniel Oviedo is an Associate Professor at UCL’s Bartlett Development and Planning Unit. He specialises in the social, economic, and spatial analysis of inequalities related to urban transport and policy evaluation, with projects situated across Latin America, Africa, and Asia, as well as here in the UK. 

Links

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Episode 5: Environmental data justice

We are most likely to think about environmental data as sets of facts, but have you thought of it as having a social life? In this episode, we explore how those who collect and prepare environmental data may not necessarily be the ones to use or benefit from it: Dr Tone Walford and Dr Cecilia Chavana-Bryant draw on their experiences of collecting data across the Amazon in Brazil, French Guiana and Peru, and more recently in Hampstead Heath in London, the UK, to consider more collaborative and equitable forms of environmental data. We discuss how bringing together anthropologists, artists, forest ecologists, remote sensing specialists, and the UK’s Ancient Tree Forum, is helping to frame alternative modes of collecting, accessing, and sharing environmental data. 

Tone Walford is a Lecturer in Digital Anthropology, based in UCL’s Anthropology Department. Their work explores the new forms of data politics that underpin current efforts in international observational science to measure, archive, and manage the Earth.

Cecilia Chavana-Bryant is a forest ecologist and a National Centre for Earth Observation Postdoctoral Research Fellow, based in UCL’s Geography Department. Her work broadly focuses on the ecology and function of temperate and tropical forests canopies.

Links

3-D models

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Series 1

In Series 1 UCL's Early Career Researchers discuss their experiences of interdisciplinary partnerships from working on a wide range of projects such as the opportunities created by digital health interventions to better understanding the social lives of computer programmers.   Further details 

Episode 1: Introducing Together We Create 


This episode introduces the Together We Create series which explores the collaborative social research being undertaken by Early Career Researchers at UCL. It sets the scene for the series by highlighting how social researchers collaborate with other disciplines, organisations, and communities, showcasing the range of this work, from collaborating with deep ocean scientists and fishing communities to protect the environment, to co-creating new apps with computer scientist to better support our health, to collaborating with designers to rethink how technology can help people to communicate, and why collaborative social science matters.

Read the transcript for Episode 1 here

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Episode 2: Building relationships for interdisciplinary and collaborative research


We often take for granted that collaborative research is dependent on relationships, which can mean that we understate the skill and intention required to create fruitful partnerships. Hear about how researchers can be intentional and strategic about building mutually beneficial and equitable collaborations.

In this episode, we are joined by Dr Michel Wahome, who joined UCL in 2021 as a lecturer in the Department of Science & Technology Studies. Before becoming an academic, Michel worked as an innovation and science policy advisor in a variety of Non-Governmental Organisations, including the New York Academy of Sciences. Michel holds a MSc in science and environmental policy and she was awarded her PhD, an analysis of the practices of digital start-up entrepreneurs in Nairobi, Kenya, in 2020 from the University of Edinburgh, and she has held research positions at Oxford and Strathclyde Universities.

Read the transcript for Episode 2 here

Links

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Episode 3: Towards meaningful interdisciplinary working in digital health research


Digital health interventions are rapidly growing and offer unique advantages compared with face-to-face interventions, including their ability to deliver tailored support to users, as and when needed. The development, optimisation, evaluation, and real-world implementation of digital health interventions requires expertise from researchers, allied professionals and end-users working across diverse fields, such as behavioural science, medicine, computer science, and human-computer interaction.

In this episode, we are joined by Dr Olga Perski a collaborative social researcher and practitioner health psychologist working in digital health. Olga was training to be a classical musician, but in 2014, following an internship in a Stockholm clinic, she joined UCL to study for a MSc in Health Psychology, then a PhD and in 2018 Olga took up a Research post in the UCL Tobacco & Alcohol research group in the department of Behavioural Science and Health.

Read the transcript for Episode 3 here

Links

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Episode 4: Collaborating to ensure buildings and cities are relevant to local communities   

In this episode, we are joined by Dr Alejandra Albuerne. Alejandra is an architectural engineer who has worked in Spain and the UK.  In 2016 she completed her PhD at Oxford University across Engineering Science and Archaeology. Before this Alejandra worked for structural engineering and architectural firms for nine years. She joined UCL in 2017 as a Lecturer in Sustainable Heritage at the Bartlett School of Environment, Energy and Resources, UCL. Alejandra’s work combines engineering skills and knowledge with cultural and social studies to address the complex challenge of conserving heritage and recovering after a disaster, an earth-quake for example. 

Read the transcript for Episode 4 here

Links

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Episode 5: The social life of programmers


Computer applications dominate contemporary social life, but who are the programmers who build these applications and what cultural values do they share? Combining the knowledge of programming with training in anthropology is one way of trying to understand the social life of programmers.

In this episode, we are joined by Dr Gui Heurich. Gui studied anthropology in Brazil. In 2016 he joined UCL Social Anthropology with a British Academy Newton International Fellowship. In 2019 he retrained as a professional software engineer. But in 2020 Gui returned to UCL with a prestigious Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship.

Read the transcript for Episode 5 here.  

Links

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Episode 6: Studying children’s interactions from an interdisciplinary perspective


Digital communication technologies can transform interactions for children with severe speech and physical impairments and their social partners. In this podcast, we hear about how interdisciplinary perspectives can help to guide how we study these interactions by drawing on speech and language therapy practice, human computer interaction and multimodal communication.

In this episode, we are joined by Dr Seray Ibrahim a collaborative social researcher who investigates the communication of children with severe speech and physical impairments. She asks how technologies can be designed in new ways to foreground the many different resources that people use to communicate. Her aim is to bring children's views into the design process to improve the communication technologies that are available to them.  Before becoming a researcher Seray worked as a Speech and Language Therapist in UK National Health Service hospital and community settings. She was awarded her PhD at UCL in 2019, and in 2020 she received a prestigious post-doctoral fellowship funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.

Read the transcript for Episode 6 here

Links

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