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IKD seminar: The iBali Network: using storytelling in research to understand inclusions and exclusions in young people’s learning

20 February 2019, 12:00 - 14:00
CMR 11, The Open University, Milton Keynes, MK7 6AA

IKD lunchtime seminar as part of the International Development Seminar Series

Speaker: Dr Alison Buckler, Research Fellow, Faculty of Wellbeing, Education & Language Studies, The Open University.

The iBali (story) Network brings together established researchers, early career researchers and practitioners from across Africa whose work coalesces around using participatory storytelling to tackle social issues which affect young people’s learning. The iBali concept grew from a reflection on existing research into multiple, overlapping learning exclusions. Understandings of these exclusions tend to align with particular, singular, popular agendas, for example the ‘plight of the girl-child’ or ‘teacher quality’ to explain why young people are not learning what is taught. Much work in this area draws on sophisticated analysis made possible through large-scale data generation around learning metrics, but these frameworks can side-line lived experience, and the social dynamics of people and places that arts-approaches afford. Political de-prioritisation of studies of local history and culture and under-funding of arts and humanities departments in Africa means that scholars working at the education/arts/development intersection face a paucity of opportunities for networking, collaboration and dialogue. As a consequence, research into learning exclusions as well as the methodological training provided to academics researching education, predominantly sits outside the arts and humanities. The iBali Network responds to these concerns.

This interactive session will explore the history and activities of iBali, showcase some work from leading African academics working with storytelling and development, and present some of the digital and written stories generated through different strands of the network. Participants will also have the opportunity to engage with and discuss some methods used to support the process of transformative storytelling as a research approach.

Lunch available from 12:00.  Presentation starts at 12:30.

Please register by emailing:

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