What is keeping me going

My supervisor and I do not really agree on outcomes for the plain language statement and I still cannot get across what I see this project as with any clarity. However, this week I was assigned the simple task of writing a one page document of what methods I am going to use and what data I intend to collect through them. I have written a very simple document, with no citations.

The gloss has certainly worn off things so I am making the most of not having to work too hard and getting to spend time reading. I took the chance and asked some of the other students if they would be interested in getting together to talk about ‘theoretical perspectives’ and most people said they are interested. Whether or not this translates into showing up I will find out on Monday. It would be great if we could create some sense of belonging to a research community and have the opportunity to explore ideas and practice explaining and justifying our work.

Yesterday was the second Research Roundtable, which certainly did not contribute to any sense of belonging to a research community. The student presentations were interesting. The key speakers on how to write a thesis certainly did not say anything I had not already read but I came prepared with some journal articles to read, which felt a bit rude but I looked up at them and nodded at the right spots so I thought it was better than spending the entire time glaring at them. Going out for a drink after with some of the other students was a nice enough break.

My reading has been a little slow. I have been looking at some more stuff on social capital only I am being very targeted in what I read. Some of the chapters in this edited volume really fit with how I see things…

Woolcock, G., and L. Manderson. Editors. 2009. Social capital and social justice : Critical Australian perspectives. Darwin: Charles Darwin University Press.

Just how political arguments about social capital, social inclusion and difference are wwas really brought home by this article by Putnam …

Putnam, R. D. 2007. E Pluribus Unum: Diversity and community in the twenty-first century the 2006 Johan Skytte prize lecture. Scandinavian Political Studies 30:137.

However the most memorable thing I have read so far this week goes to…

Cameron, J., and K. Gibson. 2005. Representing Marginalisation: Finding New Avenues for Economic and Social Intervention. GOVERNANCE 11:1. http://aegir-1.itc.griffith.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/81255/city-governance-11-cameron.pdf

I am very lucky that I did end up having that article by Cameron and Gibson sent through to me because I did a shocking job of writing down my email address. I cannot even email them back and say ‘thanks’ without being too stalkerish because the email was forwarded onto be through someone else and the original sender’s email address was stripped out. I think I’ll just have to thank the sender by not bothering them again!

This afternoon I ordered an i-phone. I am somebody who has never even used WAP on my mobile, but I am hoping if I can use some sort of online diary then the ethics committee will be less concerned about safety. I am also really excited about the possibility to check so many different public transport timetables on the go.

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