Archive for the ‘ahrc’ Category


Food/ Forethought

December 6, 2007

Case for support (1200words + 2 sides of A4 images) 7 headings


Fit to Beyond Text Programme (aims and 5 themes of BT agenda)

Aims & Objectives (specific targets and outcomes)

Research Questions (issues you explore)

Research Context (importance, other research in field, contribution to field, audience)

Research Methods (why this approach to research questions, innovations, roles of the players)

Outputs & Dissemination (examples of outputs, publications, audience, impact on policy)

Timetable (feasibility of project)


A non-sentimental view of Dundee’s objects…

December 3, 2007

How does the city communicate? (through non-textual means) What does the city communicate? (a history, a culture, an identity) To whom or to what does it communicate? (its inhabitants and its strangers). These are the fundamental research questions of this project. It is possible to subsume under these all the issues we have so far reviewed. The answers are, in a sense, quick and obvious; but elaborating them will help us to plan cities, to design them, to experience them, to make them platforms for collective thought.

The research aims and methodologies will be – in effect – the projects about Dundee which answer these questions. The context is the history of urbanism, a checklist of practitioners and books from the stoics (those philosophers of the marketplace) to the situationists to the new media practitioners who propose that digital space and technology are the new collective forums.

A non-sentimental view of one of Dundee’s objects…



Meeting minutes Thursday 29 November 07

December 3, 2007

These notes are simply a transcription of the large note pad plus a number of other salient points. They are necessarily quick, they are reference points, landmarks, not a complete surface.

5 AHRC Beyond Text themes:

  • Making & unmaking
  • Performance, improvisation, & embodied knowledge
  • Technology, innovation, & tradition
  • Mediations
  • Transmission & memory

These cut horizontally across a number of themes or areas of interest that reflect the concerns of the group. With a bit of luck, they will be the stuff of collaborative projects:

  • Boundaries and edges: between social groups, racial groups, between city and region, urban and rural, between neighbourhoods. (Anne: the mosque among the mills, the garden among the mills)
  • The waterfront: the waterfront is Dundee’s most salient feature. The waterfront development is part of a Scottish national initiative that encompasses the River Clyde on the west coast, and Edinburgh/Leith, Dundee, Aberdeen, up the east coast.
  • The north edge of Dundee (the wild west, the hinterland, (thanks Mike G)).
  • Languages and migration: the old and new Polish communities, the growth of a local language (Mike’s language wall).
  • Watercourses: the watercourses that are ‘internal’ to Dundee
  • The Tay Valley: the city and its regions needs to include not just the Dundee waterfront, but both sides of the Tay Valley.
  • The environment: the effects of Dundee upon its waterways and environment, the effects of environmental change on Dundee, its environment, its waterfront (Alison, the organic the inorganic the waste).
  • Green spaces: urban vs green space (the Botanic Gardens).
  • Futures, past futures, tradition or heritage in relation to projected futures
  • Dundee’s important objects and places (its salient buildings, landmarks, and skyline, which may or may not be the same as the list of historically significant buildings). How do the landmarks of Dundee define the identity of Dundee and Dundonians. How do they figure in the affective relationships that Dundonians have to their city. How do they define the narratives of love and loathing that seem to animate Dundonians’ relations to their city. Tayside House, loved or loathed, figures strongly in the mental map of Dundee. A project might look closely at a specific landmark or landmarks.
  • Areas of selected interest (for instance Hill Town, Roseangle): a project might look closely at a specific area.
  • Civility, civil behaviour, anti-social behaviour: how does the city encode ideas of civility and script behaviour?
  • The identity of Dundee: the identity of Dundee lies not in its particular buildings or style of buildings, but in the relationship of Dundee to its waterfront. This relation is formal and cultural, a question of fabric and street grid, and of history, heritage, expectation, folklore, etc. Identity for whom (the inhabitant, the migrant, the visitor)?
  • Archives: the Thompson Archives and the Dundee City Planning Archives are particularly rich in social and planning history, respectively. These and other archives are a source for defining past futures of the city. There were a number of proposals for projects involving the archives, either to use them to look at specific planning periods (Beth) or to look at how Dundee represents itself to itself and to others, in its archives (Lorens).

It should be clear that a number of these themes partially or wholly include each other. There is a density around boundaries and edges that includes waterfront and wild west, and includes languages and migration, and to which issues from environment, greenspace, and the identity of Dundee cohere. The archives projects could be used to examine any of the themes. These are narratives, all of them are narratives of Dundee, and we need to think about how we can weave them together.

I think that if we could do something with two poles, something around archives (identity, the past, past futures, planning, the waterfront, language) and something around planning/surveying/recording/intervening in the physical city (which did not really get mentioned at this meeting but got considerable airtime at the first meeting), we would be doing alright.