Past students

Dr Bruno Roubicek – Phd title: Performing Social Labour; Digging and Dwelling in the City.
Completed: 2017

ImageStill from video, Man Digs Pond at  La Comédie de Reims, Champagne-Ardenne, France. Festival Reims Scènes d’Europe, 5pm 30 Nov – 5pm 1 Dec, 2013. Full 3 minute video:

This thesis examines performances of digging in a variety of European and North American urban contexts. I ask how performances engage with the economic ‘rules of the house’ that dominate life in the city. Contrasting performance methodologies and contexts are explored on the page and in practice to ask how the “ecological emergency” (Timothy Morton) can be understood through a performance of digging that offers space for the audience’s own ecological thought.

The first three chapters explore an historical case study alongside examples of my own practice that are illuminated by the performances of others. The fourth and final chapter explores the development and thinking-through of the assessed performance at the viva voce exam. Throughout, I refer to thinkers across the disciplines of social anthropology (Ingold), economics (Keynes, Marx), philosophy (Morton, Bergson, Latour), theatre philosophy (Rancière, Artaud) and contemporary performance practice (Etchells)

Dr Agata Lulkowska, PhD title: The Arhuacos, film, and the politics of representing the ‘Other’ in Colombia.
Completed: 2018

Image: The young and the old – contrasts in politics of visual representation (Image: Agata Lulkowska)

This practice-based research investigates the politics of visual representations among the indigenous peoples of Colombia. Using a collaborative film as a method, I worked with the Arhuaco filmmakers from Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, investigating the implications of using a camera as a medium. Creating new layers of cinematic gazes, we pondered on who has the right to represent whom and why.

Writing about the impact of images can only be half-sucessful; judging the effect of a film by reverting the audiencing order and its power relations brings it to another level. Decades of misrepresentations of indigenous communities by external filmmakers brought them to the point where they grab the cameras and (mis?)represent themselves. This provocative statement makes my role as a witness of this battle equally complex.

Following the journey of a video from the first encounter of the filmmaker and their subjects, to the culmination when the film meets its audience, tells us more about who we are and how we perceive and shape the world around us through the cognitive and (manipulative) properties of a camera.

Dr Agata Lulkowska is now a Lecturer in Film Production in the Department of Film, Media and Journalism. She is also a prolific interdisciplinary researcher with the main interest in practice-based research, intercultural communication, ethnographic film, experimental film, short fiction, politics of representation and world cinema.

Dr Lulkowska is currently engaged in a number of activities, including:

  • Co-organiser and director of the Community and Communication conference and festival – an international interdisciplinary event:
  • Guest Editor for Contribution to Humanities,2452.html?fbclid=IwAR0hJGnkIRu8mG0CADtx_D576UhWSHMGUSQtKjdp783QnMFt8dyazrXGdBg
  • Recipient of the International Award for Excellence for the Journal of Communication and Media Studies (June 2020)
  • Specialising in Practice-based PhD supervision in film-related research
  • Currently working on two international research projects:
    • Local knowledge and media production – from isolation to collaboration – a virtual multimedia collaborative project (With Peter Rudge). An interdisciplinary, international project focused facilitating small-scale media production among selected small South Pacific islands
    • Film project on Cultural and Ecological Importance of Ancient Temple tree worship (STHALAVRIKSHAS) in Tamil Nadu, India – in partnership with Brasil and India
  • Member of the Exploring Privilege panel at Staffs, focusing on decolonizing curriculum, inclusion and diversity
  • Visiting professor at UKSW University, Poland (upcoming)
  • External consultant

Dr Jo Coleman – PhD TitleTALK OF THE TOWN: Programming the local on internet community radio

This practice-based research project explored how local community radio stations “programme the local” and how this is manifested on-line.  I am interested in how programming strategies are devised and applied in these primarily voluntary media organisations to deliver locally-relevant, locally-sourced and generated news, information and entertainment.  But I am also asking what practical steps are taken to create a geographically-specific meaningfulness in radio/audio content that characterizes a local community through the sound of its station.

I am asking how a sense of the local can be reflected in the output of an internet community radio station.  I intend to undertake qualitative research in this field, utilising a range of ethnographic techniques.  By engaging with a select number of local community radio organisations as participant observer, I will encounter and interrogate their production practices.  The aim is to collate a manual of programming strategies which I then hope to self-reflexively implement on my local station.  I will critically consider and seek feedback on the extent to which I have achieved “local resonance” through this programming and thus hope to offer insights into how internet radio nurtures local communities.