We are a community of motivated and active researchers and it's always interesting to hear of the public engagement projects our researchers are running. Public engagement is a broad term that can cover a wide range of activities and events. Combining art with research gives a visual stimulus that can encourage people to think and connect with research. Oli Williams from the Department for Health invited artists to submit peices based on his theme of 'health as a social issue' and hopes that the created works will inspire people. The artworks will be on show at The Edge this Friday 18th November. Details are below.
The Public Engagement Unit can suport you if you have an idea for a public engagement event, from talking through ideas, putting you in contact with partners, providing training or helping with evaluation.
Equity is the Answer
Friday 18 November 2016
18:00 – 21:00
The Edge, University of Bath
Health is usually presented to us as a personal choice: choose to live healthier, you'll live longer and happier. Really?
Research has long shown that social circumstances often overwhelm our choices. This is why more wealth tends to mean better health. Our governments, however, would rather we didn't think like that. They frame bad health as a result of bad choices. That's far easier for them and it maintains the status quo.
But we need change. We need to see health as a social issue - to highlight the devastating impact of inequality and challenge the focus on individual choice. That is exactly what this exhibition is about.
Oli Williams is a Research Associate in the Department for Health and co-founder of the AWL art collective. About two years ago AWL started a project called ‘Picturing a Thesis’ which has ultimately led to the Equity is the Answer exhibition. Oli explains:
"I started this project shortly after completing my PhD in the Department of Sociology at the University of Leicester. I wanted to make my research findings as accessible and engaging as possible and so decided to work with partners in the creative industries to translate elements of my thesis into artworks.
"My doctoral research explored relationships between health, place and inequality. I conducted an ethnography in a deprived neighbourhood that highlighted how social factors inhibited the residents’ capacity to adopt a ‘healthy lifestyle’. I presented an argument for reducing health inequalities by addressing the social determinants of health with equitable interventions. It was these arguments that led to me receiving the NIHR CLAHRC West Dan Hill Fellowship in Health Equity."
More than 50 pieces were submitted to the ‘Picturing a Thesis’ project and 20 have been selected for display in the 'Equity is the Answer' exhibition. It's a public exhibition and there will be a wine reception on the evening. Reproductions of the work and other related items will be sold on the night to raise funds for the social change organisation Edge Fund.
If you have any queries or comments about the exhibition please do not hesitate to contact Oli via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org