Some Research Conclusions… with Playmobil!

My research is investigating ways to reduce carbon emissions from heritage buildings while retaining their heritage values, I have mostly completed my data collection and am now in the process of analysing it all.

Once again the OU Graduate School are running a research poster competition that includes a multimedia option and this seemed like an excellent opportunity to create another Playmobil video about my research, this time identifying some interim conclusions (see the previous two videos and posts here:…mmunication-tool/ and here: ).

Below is this year’s video!

And if you want to see the other multimedia entries and posters and vote for your favourite the link to the Graduate School site is here: (Please note that my video is not currently displaying properly on the graduate school site, they are attempting to sort this out but luckily you can see it ‘in full technicolour’ below!)

As well as being a fun and enjoyable activity and a good excuse to retire to the loft and legitimately play, I also found this design process surprisingly useful in terms of thinking about my research. It was quite interesting to sit down and really consider how I could summarise some of my conclusions in an accessible way and in less than five minutes. Summarising two 10,000 word journal articles into a short video is tricky!  I might even claim that it is useful thesis planning as it helped me to think about how the different topics should be divided and how they interacted with each other and formed a coherent story.

Interaction of different research areas on ‘the master Venn diagram’

It was also interesting to consider how best to display some of the concepts visually, especially the more abstract concepts like ‘heritage value’ and to think about how to model the things that I don’t have in Playmobil (I understand that they do now do solar panels but I don’t have any and it wouldn’t be sustainable to buy more plastic just for a research communication video!).

It’s amazing what you can do with some editing software, a printer and some cardboard and sellotape

All in all I found it a fun and useful exercise and I hope that it will help explain some of my research to a wider audience in an accessible way. I hope you enjoy watching it!





2 responses to “Some Research Conclusions… with Playmobil!”

  1. Georgy Holde avatar
    Georgy Holde

    Wow! A fantastically accessible presentation of your findings, which are really interesting. I love the idea of dogs (or cats) as a retrofit energy source. I am also envious of your Playmobil collection! Thank you for sharing this.

  2. Alice avatar

    Another wonderful video from Freya! I don’t think I’ve ever seen carbon reduction from buildings (eminently worthy and important but, let’s face it, often as dull as ditchwater) being explained in such an entertaining way as Freya’s videos. Not sure if she will go on to be a great academic, or the next competition for Aardman Animations – perhaps both.

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