Liverpool Hope University is to hold a series of events exploring the notion of ‘Communiversity’ - the vital relationships between universities and the wider community.
The webinars and events are being hosted by Hope’s Centre of Education and Policy Analysis (CEPA) and begin in earnest later this month.
For Dr Catherine O’Connell, Senior Lecturer in Education Studies and Associate Director of CEPA, ‘Communiversity’ dialogues between schools, social enterprises and local businesses are going to prove more crucial than ever in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
And the webinars and debates - which run from October 21st through to April 26th next year - will discuss everything from ways University-School partnerships can improve the futures of disadvantaged children, to how the Communiversity can lead to new sustainable business initiatives.
Dr O’Connell says: “In an era of pressing social challenges there is an urgent need for universities to develop and enhance new and existing reciprocal relationships with key stakeholder partners, and to be grounded in communities as partners in knowledge-creation.
“This will particularly be the case in the recovery that shapes the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The idea of the Communiversity seeks to connect a diversity of educational stakeholders.
“There are many models of communiversity which connect local social networks and research-informed tertiary education and local ecosystems for social transformation are co-opting universities into their developmental programmes.
“This event series explores the possibilities associated with the concept in our local context.”
Other highlights of the event series include a discussion on how community engaged research partnerships assist in adapting pedagogies to support ‘precarious communities’ - such as asylum seekers, travellers, Roma peoples, and seasonal or migrant workers.
Another event due to be held in January will explore ways to give student teachers the confidence to teach music - something identified as hugely beneficial in helping children with challenging socioeconomic backgrounds.
And in February Hope’s Dr Konstanze Spohrer and Dr O’Connell will lead a webinar discussing the concept of ‘Funds of Knowledge’ - the notion that local, boots-on-the-ground knowledge can be crucial in identifying the specific needs of children - and how this can be harnessed to improve Communiversity partnerships.
Here are the dates for all the planned events:
21/10/20: Reconceptualising University-School partnerships for social advantage.
23/11/20: Developing a Communiversity - students, social business and servicing solidarity. The case of The Good Business Festival"
8/12/20: Community Integration: Education on and for migration
11/01/21: Developing Student Teacher self efficacy through the Hope Challenge
10/02/21: Working with communities' local knowledge and resources
24/02/21: Investigating Primary Leadership in Catholic Schools: a case study of knowledge building through active partnership
24/03/21: Collaborative approaches with Leaders in Early Childhood Education and Care.
26/04/21: Panel session: Realising the Communiversity
All of the events are free to attend.
To book on to any of the events, head here.