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Alison Rooke BA, MA, PhD

Position held:
Lecturer and Researcher

Phone:
+44 (0)20 7078 5073

Email:
a.rooke (@gold.ac.uk)

Alison Rooke is a visual sociologist whose teaching and research is concerned with Alison is a visual sociologist whose research interests are focused around class, generation, gender and sexualities in urban contexts. She is concerned with the  dynamics of participation in the city brought about through arts based urban interventions, urban planning, research and evaluation as well as informal spaces of citizenship and community. Her work lies at the overlap of visual sociology and experimental methods exploring the philosophical underpinnings of sociological representation, and the ways that understandings of representation inform the epistemology of social research. Alison works in partnership with a range of arts organisations an institutions developing critical and collaborative approaches to research and evaluation.

Past projects include Sci:dentity, a project which worked with young transgendered people exploring the science of sex and gender through creative practices, Signs of the City, a European participatory youth arts project, Skills Exchange, collaborative art and social research project that tested the idea that isolation and discrimination are best addressed if artists, older people, care-workers and others exchange their skills on equal ground, altering roles, representations and well-rehearsed relations through processes of creative exchange ( LINK TO REPORT)  and Extending Creative Practice, A European project uses digital storytelling as a means to increase the active usage of ICT by older citizens. (http://www.extendingcreativepractice.eu/about/ LINK) and AMICALL (EU Integration Fund) Evaluation of a transnational learning network which will identify, share and disseminate best practice among Europe's local and regional authorities (LRAs) in communicating with local citizens about migration and integration of third-country nationals to address tensions and build public understanding. http://www.compas.ox.ac.uk/research/urbanchange/amicall/

Presentations and exhibitions

Reading the Signs of the City: the Visual Cultures of European Cities as part of a panel on Encountering the city through the Lens: Photography and the art of researching urban lives (Panel Organiser)  at Visual Methods Conference, University of  Leeds, September 2009

‘Researching everyday lives through photography – ‘from what a lesbian looks like to what a lesbian looks at'’ as part of a panel on the ethics of looking and seeing: researching, writing and teaching with images. Visual Methods Conference, University of  Leeds, September 2009

Discussant on panel on Changing Landscapes: Archives & Activism at Urban Encounters: Rethinking Landscape Symposia, Tate Britain. May 2009.

Reading the Signs of the City: the Visual Cultures of European Cities as part of a panel on ‘The art of Geography ( Panel organiser) 'Association of American Geographers, Las Vegas, Nevada, March  2009

Panelist. Borderlands Seminar on The (im)possibilities of engaged urban Sociology/photography/art. Goldsmiths,  February 2009

Narrating Urban Encounters and the Spatial Sublime (with Prof Michael Keith) to Urban Encounters Conference, Goldsmiths, University of London. May 2008-05-21

Telling Trans Stories: (Un)doing the Science of Sex: to Panel on Queering the Material: Reflections on Researching the Material from Queer Perspectives at Royal Society of Britsh Geographers Annual Conference, London, August 2008

Reading the Signs of the City presentation at ESRC/ LCACE (London Centre for Arts and Cultural Enterprise) Mapping the Horizon for the Creative and Cultural Industries Event Unicorn Theatre, March  2008.

Grants & awards

Current Research

Arts and Active Citizenship ESRC Case studies to support research capacity building in the Third Sector: working with Lincoln and Manchester Metropolitan Universities to develop research for Active Citizenship and Community Empowerment. Working with Arts and Active citizenship (7,000) (ESRC) Case studies to support research capacity building in the Third Sector: working with Lincoln and Manchester Metropolitan Universities to develop research for Active Citizenship and Community empowerment. The two case studies are  London Bubble Theatre and Stream Arts.
 
Skills Exchange.   Research and evaluation partner to the Serpentine Gallery’s Skills Exchange project which brings together internationally-renowned  artists, architects,  housing and care organisations in order to explore and generate new dynamics of relationship and exchange. This project examines the role of the artist in understanding older people’s sense of home and experience of urban change in four London Boroughs. Dominant formulations of ‘care’ often place the elderly in the role of  the ‘serviced’ or ‘cared for’, as those ‘without’, or ‘after’ the peak moments of their lives, and the artist or social-worker in the role of the ‘skilled’ or ‘carer’. This project, in contrast, begins from a notion that artists, older people, care-workers and others might exchange their skills, and, in this process, alter reified roles and well-rehearsed relations through processes of creative exchange.

Extending Creative Practice (ECP) is a European Grundtvig /ECORYS partnership project which is motivated by a desire to make ICT accessible to marginalised communities, particularly elderly people and isolated people from rural communities. Extending Creative Practice uses digital storytelling as a means to increase the active usage of ICT by older citizens. The ECP team includes partners from Romania, Slovenia and Finland.

Attitudes to Migrants, Communication and Local Leadership (AMICALL) Evaluation of a transnational learning network which will identify, share and disseminate best practice among Europe’s local and regional authorities and civil society organisations in communicating with local citizens about migration and integration of third-country nationals to address tensions and build public understanding.

Selected Previous Research 2010 – 2005

London Thames Gateway Dance Partnership Evaluation. (London Thames Gateway Dance Partnership). Working with eight London Dance organisations in four Thames Gateway boroughs, this project explores the possibilities of community dance projects in improving health and developing a sense of place within the context of the Thames Gateway development area.

Signs of the City - Metropolis Speaking. (European Culture Programme) Arts led visual research into young peoples experience of Urbanism in 4 European cities.  European partners in Berlin, Barcelona and Sofia including  include Goethe Institute London, House of World Cultures, Berlin, Hangar  Barcelona.

Neighbourhood Cohesion Project
. (Housing Corporation £15,000).  Principle Researcher, 18-months Project. Participatory Action Research.

Mobilizing Knowledge
(Urban Buzz UEL £25,000) Principal Researcher, 12-months Project. Partnership with Lewisham Council. Participatory planning with older people and planners. Produced report, toolkits and Guidelines.

Sci:dentity (Wellcome Trust £10,000)  Principle Researcher, 12-months Project. Participatory art and research with Transgendered youth. Partnership with Central School of Speech and Drama.

Evaluation of Home Office Initiative ‘Active Learning for Active Citizenship’. (Home Office, Civil Renewal Unit £50,000), Researcher, 2-years project.

Knowledge East - Arts Impact Research Toolkit. (HEFCE funded knowledge exchange programme).  Developing a flexible and innovative toolkit for evaluating the social, economic and cultural impact of participation in the performing arts to support social inclusion, for use by urban regeneration practitioners.

Newtown Neighbourhood Project: Community cohesion and action research project in semi-rural housing estate with high settled Traveller population (2006-2008). Funded by: Housing Corporation, delivered in partnership with West Kent Extra and real strategies Ltd.

Camberwell Advocacy Project/Sceaux Gardens Life History Project: Development of a multi-disciplinary research and advocacy tool to be used in deprived micro-neighbourhoods. Funded by: Camberwell Neighbourhood Renewal, delivered in partnership with ATD 4th World.

Conferences

2010

Evaluating the art of social engagement. Taking Part: Arts, Culture and Participation. Goldsmiths.

Making Things Public: Doing Sociology Beyond the Page. 8th Qualitative Research Conference. University of Bournmouth.

Art and Architecture lecture Series.  Mapping Civic Space.  Photographers Gallery, Chair of panel discussion on Art and Architecture with Bridget Smith, Mark Pimlott, and Diego Ferrari.

Reading the Signs of the City: Exploring the Visual Cultures of European Cities through participatory photographic practice. Photography: Medium and Method. Sociology Department, Lancaster University.

2009

Reading the Signs of the City: the Visual Cultures of European Cities as part of a panel on Encountering the city through the Lens: Photography and the art of researching urban lives (Panel Organiser) at Visual Methods Conference, University of  Leeds.

Researching everyday lives through photography – from what a lesbian looks like to what a lesbian looks at'’ as part of a panel on the ethics of looking and seeing: researching, writing and teaching with images. Visual Methods Conference, University of  Leeds.

Discussant on panel on Changing Landscapes: Archives & Activism at Urban Encounters: Rethinking Landscape Symposia, Tate Britain.

Reading the Signs of the City: the Visual Cultures of European Cities
as part of a panel on ‘The art of Geography ( Panel organiser) 'Association of American Geographers, Las Vegas, Nevada.

Panelist. Borderlands Seminar on The (im)possibilities of engaged urban Sociology/photography/art. Goldsmiths.

2008

Narrating Urban Encounters and the Spatial Sublime (with Prof Michael Keith) to Urban Encounters Conference, Goldsmiths, University of London. May 2008-05-21

Telling Trans Stories: (Un)doing the Science of Sex
: to Panel on Queering the Material: Reflections on Researching the Material from Queer Perspectives at Royal Society of Britsh Geographers Annual Conference, London, August 2008

Reading the Signs of the City presentation at ESRC/ LCACE (London Centre for Arts and Cultural Enterprise) Mapping the Horizon for the Creative and Cultural Industries Event Unicorn Theatre, March  2008.

Research interests

Alison Rooke's research interests are focused around issues of class, gender and sexualities in urban contexts. Alison has written on issues relating to cosmopolitanism, visibility, embodiment and belonging in classed and queer cultures. Alison's work focuses on gendered and sexual subjectivities, grounding queer theorising in everyday lived complexity. Her PhD research Lesbian Landscapes And Portraits: The Sexual Geographies Of Everyday Life was a visual ethnography exploring the interconnections of spatiality and subjectivity for working class lesbian and bisexual women. In addition Alison has developed expertise in participative action research and evaluation with a specific focus on the social, economic and cultural impact of creativity. She is currently working with colleagues at Central School of Speech and Drama evaluating Sci:dentity., a project which works with young transgendered people exploring the science of sex and gender through creative practices. Alison has been recently working with Professor Marj Mayo conducting a participative evaluation of the Home Office's national Active Learning for Active Citizenship programme.

Selected publications

Number of items: 13.

Article

Rooke, Alison. 2013. Modalities of Exchange: A summary Report. Art=CAre: a Future , pp. 59-120. [Article]

Rooke, Alison. 2010. Trans youth, science and art: creating (trans) gendered space. Gender, Place and Culture, 17(5), pp. 655-672. ISSN 0966-369X [Article]

Mayo, Marjorie C., Gaventa, John and Rooke, Alison. 2009. Learning global citizenship? Exploring connections between the local and the global. Education, Citizenship and Social Justice, 4(2), pp. 161-175. ISSN 1746-1979 [Article]

Gaventa, J., Mayo, Marjorie C. and Rooke, Alison. 2009. Learning global citizenship? Exploring connections between the local and the global. Education, Citizenship and Social Justice, 4(2), pp. 161-175. ISSN 1746-1979 [Article]

Rooke, Alison. 2009. Queer in the Field: On Emotions, Temporality, and Performativity in Ethnography. Journal of Lesbian Studies, 13(2), pp. 149-160. ISSN 1089-4160 [Article]

Rooke, Alison. 2007. Navigating embodied Lesbian cultural space: towards a lesbian habitus. Space and Culture, 10, pp. 231-252. ISSN 12063312 [Article]

Book

Rooke, Alison. 2010. Telling Trans Stories: (Un)doing the Science of Sex. Abingdon, Oxford: routledge. ISBN 978-0=415-99930-4 [Book]

Book Section

Rooke, Alison. 2013. Contradiction, collaboration and criticality: Researching empowerment and citizenship in community-based arts. In: Marjorie C. Mayo, Zoraida mendiwelso bendek and Carol Packham, eds. Community Research for Community Development. hampshire: palgrave macmillan, pp. 150-169. ISBN 978-1- 137- 03473-1 [Book Section]

Rooke, Alison and Gidley, Ben. 2010. Asdatown: The intersections of classed places and identities. In: Yvette Taylor, ed. Classed Intersections: spaces, selves, knowledges. Farnham. Surrey: Ashgate, 95 -116. ISBN 9780754675624 [Book Section]

Rooke, Alison and Moreno Figueroa, Monica. 2010. Beyond ‘Key Parties and ‘Wife Swapping’: The Visual Culture of Online Swinging. In: Feona Attwood, ed. Porn.com.Making Sense of Online Pornography. Oxford: Peter Lang, pp. 217-245. ISBN 978-1-4331-0206-6 [Book Section]

Rooke, Alison. 2010. Queer in the Field: on emotions temporality and performativity in ethnography. In: Kath Browne and katheerine, j nash, eds. - Alison Rooke (in) Queer Methods and Methodologies:intersecting Queer theories and Social Science Research. Farnahm, Surry: Ashgate, pp. 25-41. ISBN 9780754678434 [Book Section]

Report

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Content last modified: 19 Jun 2012

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