Creative focus

  Dr Martin Glynn - School of Social Sciences

The key focus of this stream will be:

To investigate alternative methods of providing education on Brexit, including (but not limited to); media, art, theatre and music.

Within other CBS streams there will significant opportunities to locate some of the implications/consequences with a statistical context. However, it is proposed that the dissemination of research, understandings, insights, contexts, etc, of Brexit are best understood within a ‘qualitative frame of reference’, adapted into ‘a creative form of expression’, and shared with the wider public:

  • To raise awareness towards the triggering of Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty and its impacts
  • To increase discussion and debate within the wider society about the Brexit decision
  • To engage in a wider public discourse with strategic bodies regarding the impacts of the Brexit decision
  • voice to the concerns of individuals affected by the Brexit decision/

Presentation Literacy

Centre for Brexit Studies Creative Image 350x263 - People sat around a table with social media logos‘Presentation literacy’ is about being both ‘competent’ and ‘proficient’ in presenting ideas publicly. It is also about connecting directly with your audience from the moment you step onto the stage. Presentation literacy is also about strengthening techniques and approaches that will excite, motivate, inspire, and transform your audience, understand who they are, what they want, and what you want from them. It is not a case of dumbing things down, but more about taking your complex ideas, breaking them, and presenting them in ways that appeals to both the ‘mind’ and the ‘heart’.

It is important not be too vague, use hidden meanings, or try to outsmart your audience. You’re trying to get something across to people that you want to influence, or may influence others in relation to important aspects of your work. Failure to make things visible, transparent or easy to understand will result in losing your audience and could cost you dearly. At times audience’s attention can wander, be disengaged, or at worst disinterested. Your job is to ‘work the room’ maintaining control and composure at all times. In every presentation there are moments when things don’t go well. Remember you are doing a presentation, not delivering a lecture. Lectures are very formal affairs and require a delivery style where facts and other related information can be passed on. If you’re wanting an audience to engage with you then tell stories that are relevant, appropriate, and engaging. Make sure they are rich with anecdotes, insights, and wisdom. With the amount of information on TV, social media, and the internet many of us suffer from ‘information overload’. Therefore, it is vital for you to try and find new, innovative, and creative ways to tell us things we need to know.

Feed the audience’s hunger for experiences that takes them to new points of understanding. Nothing’s worse than listening to someone who is boring, where the presentation is predictable, mundane, and dry. Magicians are always full of surprises, whilst a good thriller contains twists and turns. Your presentation should involve elements of surprise to take the audience off guard. To do requires you to take some risks. Don’t be satisfied to rely purely on your voice to carry your message to the audience. We live in an age which is much more sophisticated. Audiences expect an ‘experience’ not just a straightforward ‘presentation’. You should be as multi-faceted in your approach by making the impact as ‘sensory’ as possible. An experienced presenter and storyteller gauges the audience’s mood, doesn’t overstay their welcome, and works towards a timely exit, which doesn’t exhaust the audience. If you’ve set up your presentation well, delivered it with clarity, engaged your audience, maintained the energy, and concluded in a way that leaves everyone wanting more, then you have managed to stay on the right lane. If you have done that, then the wisdom has been imparted. This in turn means you would have successfully generated some kind of impact. So how can you take ‘research data’, present it creatively, whilst at the same time improving your ‘presentation literacy?’ Also, ‘how do you go from ‘data to performance?

From Data to Performance

As stated previously much contemporary research has to demonstrate significant ‘social impact’. So there is a pressing need to create new and innovative ways to ‘share’, ‘distribute’ and ‘disseminate’ research data. It is for this reason I set out to explore how my own research could be presented in ways that were ‘accessible’, ‘easily understood’, ‘inclusive’, ‘engaging’, and ‘impacting’. After a long search I found ‘data visualization’; used widely in both academic and corporate circles. ‘Data visualization’ presents data in understanding.

Nothing’s worse than listening to someone who is boring, where the presentation is predictable, mundane, and dry. Magicians are always full of surprises, whilst a good thriller contains twists and turns. Your presentation should involve elements of surprise to take the audience off guard. To do requires you to take some risks. Don’t be satisfied to rely purely on your voice to carry your message to the audience. We live in an age which is much more sophisticated. Audiences expect an ‘experience’ not just a straightforward ‘presentation’. You should be as multi-faceted in your approach by making the impact as ‘sensory’ as possible. An experienced presenter and storyteller gauges the audience’s mood, doesn’t overstay their welcome, and works towards a timely exit, which doesn’t exhaust the audience.

If you’ve set up your presentation well, delivered it with clarity, engaged your audience, maintained the energy, and concluded in a way that leaves everyone wanting more, then you have managed to stay on the right lane. If you have done that, then the wisdom has been imparted. This in turn means you would have successfully generated some kind of impact. So how can you take ‘research data’, present it creatively, whilst at the same time improving your ‘presentation literacy?’ Also, ‘how do you go from ‘data to performance?

After a long search I found ‘data visualization’; used widely in both academic and corporate circles. ‘Data visualization’ presents data in a ‘visual’ or ‘graphical’ formats to explore difficult concepts or identify emerging new patterns contained within ‘statistical data’. However, I needed to find an approach that would assist qualitative researchers such as myself. So I began to explore the intersection of ‘music’, ‘spoken word poetry’, ‘theatre’, ‘lately film’ and ‘qualitative research’. Having spent many months experimenting, going through many moments of ‘trial and error’, I eventually began to see the emergence of a process that I was in a positon to refine until I was happy with my discovery. The result gave birth to what I now refer to as ‘data verbalization’.

Data Verbalization

‘Data Verbalization’ is about ‘communicating’ & ‘disseminating’ research data using performance approaches & techniques (Glynn, 2016).

Excited by my discovery I was approached by a music producer who agreed to work in partnership with me to bring my idea to frution. The result was the production of my ‘debut single’ 'Silenced' which is now available on ITunes (See link below).

Since its release (July 2016) the response to ‘Silenced’ has been overwhelming as it has been consumed by a worldwide audience, played on the radio, found its way onto several media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc., whilst at the same time bringing significant attention to the original research that the track was adapted from. It is against this backdrop that PLATFORM - ‘Data Verbalization Lab’ is set.

Article 50 - Play

The initial outcome for this stream to be presented in 2017 will be the staging of a new play called ‘Article 50’.

Article 50 – Synopsis

‘Article 50’ is a tense one act play featuring the complexities, contradictions, and tensions surrounding the aftermath of ‘the Brexit referendum’ and the ‘Donald Trump election victory’ within a university whose staff become polarized by the outcomes when both students and staff begin to clash over emerging ideological conflicts.

Article 50 examines the consequences and implications when the binary of ‘assimilation’ versus ‘integration’ speaks to power in the pursuit of ‘social’ and ‘racial justice’.