I fear I agree with Terry.
However, the point of conferences is rarely, in my experience, in the
papers presented etc. I can read those, and most presentations are
disgraceful. Further the format really isn't helpful.
The point of conference is the chance both to network and to test
ideas. These lead to new ideas and understandings. We have few places
where we can meet like this, and that is what we risk losing.
I believe we need to at least argue this point, which I don't believe
is understood by our bean counters, or, on occasion, by ourselves and
our colleagues. In a time of measurement and counting, we run the
risk of running out of new material to measure and count. Conferences
aren't indulgent therapy, it's the mechanism by which innovation
prospers. Remember what happened when we rationalised away coffee
corners in office design?
On 25 Feb 2007, at 03:31, Terence Love wrote:
> In Australia, we have received clear signals from the government that
> conferences will become much less relevant in research quality
> Instead, the focus will be on citations of refereed papers in first-
> journals with high impact factors. (Design Issues is in the
> citation list,
> Design Studies is not).
> This impact directly on income for education institutions and cash
> that is
> made available to academics.
> I gather this sea-change is a world-wide phenomenon.
> Some implications are:
> * Funding for attendance to conferences will be significantly
> particularly for anyone under professorial rank who does not have
> their own
> research income stream.
> * Conference viability will be reduced.
> * Conferences will become less relevant to building the research field
> * Conferences will have a biasing effect on the growth of the field
> the networking will comprise a restricted subset of participants
> that will
> exclude many researchers in early/mid career
> * Increased conservatism in the field (conferences only with existing
> established professors).
> * Increased emphasis on well-justified research outcomes rather than
> contextual and philosophical discussions.
> This might be the time to think twice for those thinking of
> planning future
> design research conferences?
> Dr. Terence Love
> Curtin Research Fellow, FDRS, AMIMechE
> Design-focused Research Group, Design Out Crime Research Group
> Key Researcher, Centre for Extended Enterprise and Business
> Research Associate, Planning and Transport Research Centre
> Curtin University, PO Box U1987, Perth,
> Western Australia 6845
> Mob: 0434 975 848, Fax +61(0)8 9305 7629, [log in to unmask]
> Visiting Professor, Member of Scientific Council
> UNIDCOM/ IADE, Lisbon, Portugal.
> Visiting Research Fellow,
> Institute of Entrepreneurship and Enterprise Development,
> Management School,
> Lancaster University, Lancaster, UK, [log in to unmask]