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Durham University

Institute of Advanced Study

Past Events

The Ustinov Annual Conference

Ustinov College

Durham University’s Ustinov College presents its inaugural Annual Conference, which will also mark the 50th anniversary of its establishment as a graduate society.

Established to further establish the role of Ustinov College in supporting new theoretical directions and original outcomes and in providing a centre for cross-discipline cooperation, the Annual Conference seeks to bring together research students and established practitioners to share knowledge and insights on interdisciplinary projects, as well as the advantages and disadvantages experienced on the path from conception to completion.

Interdisciplinary collaboration is not confined to the academic world: it is embedded in the fabric of everyday experiences. Therefore, the conference will place a particular emphasis on the practical aspects of interdisciplinarity, whether they stem from extensive analyses of the literature or come from a single case study (which may be a ‘success story’ or even a ‘lesson learned’).

Durham is the third oldest university in England and one of the world’s leading centres of scholarship and learning. It has a long history of welcoming students and academics from across the globe. Ustinov College, a unique international postgraduate community, enables all members to meet and engage in interdisciplinary dialogue both informally and through its academic projects. Named after Sir Peter Ustinov, the college promotes an ethos of global citizenship, making it a prime venue in which to explore ‘the crossing of boundaries’.

Dimensions of interdisciplinary work that would be considered include, but are not limited to:

  • Identifying and evaluating boundaries in research: Are they points of contact, demarcations or limitations?
  • Working at the edge of your field: How do practitioners learn to engage productively with other disciplinary areas?
  • Methodological issues: How can different scientific approaches be combined successfully, while preserving their individual contributions and without affecting their validity?
  • Epistemological issues: How can theoretical frameworks from distinct and distant fields be understood in unity?
  • Scholarship issues: How can consistency be ensured when findings are published in a range of widely differing scholarly journals?
  • Social, administrative and practical issues: Where should funding be sought and by whom? What are the day-to-day problems of being involved in a large collaborative project? How can interdisciplinary projects be developed and managed effectively?

Proposals (maximum of 250 words) should be sent to by 20th April 2015. Accepted proposals will be available online from 15th May 2015. A limited number of travel and accommodation grants will be awarded to successful postgraduate applicants.

A pre-conference dinner will be held on Friday 10th July in the historic city of Durham. Durham Castle and Cathedral, together designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, dominate the skyline and look out over breath-taking views of the countryside. As a conference participant you can take the unique opportunity to view the 1216 Magna Carta, which will be exhibited at Durham University’s Palace Green Library between 1st June and 31st August 2015.

To register, click here


Contact for more information about this event.