I am a researcher and lecturer in design for heritage. My disciplinary focus brings together creative methods, critical heritage studies and participatory design. I completed my PhD in international temporary cultural space in 2009. Since 2013, I have been Public Engagement Lead for the School of Arts and Creative Industries. I have been Ethics Gatekeeper since 2015.
My work is concerned with issues of representation, equality and diversity in the public realm. I adopt creative participatory methods in my research with the aim of transcending language barriers and extending the capacity of community agency within research. Most recent publications include “Negotiating privileged networks and exclusive mobilities: the case for a Deaf festival in Scotland’s festival city” (2019) in Annals of Leisure Research, “Exploring Deaf Heritage Futures through critical design and ‘public things’” (2020) in the International Journal of Heritage Studies, and “The Deaf Heritage Collective: Collaboration with Critical Intent” (2021) in a special issue of the Journal of Ethnology and Folkloristics. I am currently working with curators and deaf researchers on the first co-produced national Deaf Heritage Archive at the National Library of Scotland.
I am interested in the inclusive capacity of Public Engagement practices and public pedagogy, especially when paired with creative participatory methods. I am a fellow of the Higher Education Academy and lead MA/MFA modules in Research as Critical Practice, Heritage Interpretation Design and Research Portfolio for Creative Practice.
I am currently developing a new Public Engagement project that brings together feminist interpretation design with social justice, co-design methods and the memorialisation of Scotland’s accused witches. The project invites girls and women of all ages to design and debate the women behind the witchcraft trials in Scotland. Our aim is to create spaces where girls and women can collaboratively design and think about the witch trials in Scotland, and the significance of the recent pardon granted by the Scottish Government (on the 8th March 2022).
I have developed and co-led a suite of Design MA/MFA’s and supervised several PhD projects. I welcome applications from prospective PhD students in the areas of Critical Heritage, Creative and Participatory Action Research, Creative Placemaking and inclusive design methods.