Okay, so one of those isn’t strictly true.

Last week we (HighWire) ran DocFest 11, a DTC summer school for EPSRC and related digital economy doctoral training centres.

We had an interesting line up of speakers including, Jane Prophet speaking on post disciplinary research. Her statement about being a ‘professional – fish out of water’ resonated with many of us in HighWire who no longer belong to a ‘school’ a research area or faculty. Her insights on ‘the language of disciplinary working’ are super valuable for anyone working across disciplines. Also, she distracted us with shiny glowing things, always a good HighWire distraction mechanism.

Day one opened with Alan Dix keynoting and facilitating a workshop on ‘Understanding Creativity: from Bad Ideas to Personality Prosthesis’ followed by Chris Csikszentmihalyi on ‘Stakes of the art: three vectors of professional risk’ and a huge game of Risk snakes and ladders. Finally a talk by Sir Chris Bonnington. We followed these talks with an excellent barbeque and ale in sunny Lancashire weather and an after dinner talk ‘Digital Economy: the true transformation is yet to come’ by Marc Huijbregts from Saatchi and Saatchi. For the night owls among us we had a live band in the shape of Dan Haywood’s New Hawks and a secret VJ in a dark, dark room.

Day two saw Representatives for the Research Councils UK Digital Economy Programme  John Baird and Hannah Foreman review the years and impacts so far. Followed by sponsors BT and Google. We then ran a workshop on collaboration which involved a QR code treasure hunt, keys, haikus and safes. You had to be there really.

And then there was Daresbury where I attended The Manufacturing Institute Event: rapid prototyping and digital manufacture with Dr Eddie Kirby and Neil Smith.

Finally Dungeons, by this I refer to the underground network of canals and bomb shelters found under Manchester city centre, I’ve been exploring beneath the surface.


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