Forthcoming Methods@manchester events

What is…? talks

These talks take place every Thursday from 1 – 2pm.

11 November
What is time series analysis? by Denise Osborn, Economics
Venue: Room 6.210, University Place
Time series analysis covers a wide range of statistical and econometric techniques designed to capture the patterns observed over time in one or more data series. The methods of time series analysis are inherently dynamic, so that, say, UK inflation in October 2010 is viewed in terms of how inflation and other macroeconomic variables have moved over preceding months and years. As such, time series analysis can be viewed as a form of regression modelling, but with the focus on dynamics and recurring temporal patterns.

18 November
What is Creative Interviewing? by Jennifer Mason, Realities/Sociology
Venue: Room 1.69/1.70, HBS
The term ‘creative interviewing’ was coined for the social sciences in the 1980s by Jack Douglas, to denote the kind of interview that responded to situational dynamics and was flexible, rather than following a predefined structure (Douglas, 1985). It has also been used in the domain of journalism to denote an investigative rather than structured style of interviewing, where the interviewer as to think on their feet (Metzler, 2002). Creative interviews can also involve participants engaging in creative activities like drawing, collage, creating diagrams, taking pictures or looking at them (photo elicitation), walking, and so on.

25 November
What is action research? by Heather Waterman, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work
Venue: Room 1.69/1.70, HBS

Methods workshops

Wednesday 10 November
Multilevel modelling day
10.00 – 4.30, Room 3.204, University Place, University of Manchester
This day brings together a range of multilevel modelling applications across the University of Manchester. The aim of the day is to discuss the different methodological approaches used in their substantive context. The day should be of interest to all those who are using, or planning to use multilevel modelling in their research. We will also be signposting the resources available at the Multilevel Modelling centre, University of Bristol.

Thursday 11 November 2010
Working with International Development Data
2.30 – 4.30pm, Room 2.7, 2nd floor, Humanities Bridgeford Street
A talk by Eric Swanson, DEC Development Data Group, World BankThe World Bank’s World
Development Indicators is a comprehensive source of data of economic, social, and environmental indicators. The database is compiled from many sources, each having its particular sources in the work of international agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and national statistical offices. In progressing from the original source to the WDI database, data are standardized and revised to improve comparability over time and between countries. Working with these data and with data from other sources, it is useful to understand something of their lineage.

Monday 6 December
Research Computing Support for the University of Manchester
1 – 2pm, Room G30/31, Arthur Lewis Building, University of Manchester
This talk will outline the available support for research computing: optimising and parallelising computer models, visualisation, and supporting access to (inter)national high end computing facilities. Typical examples and case studies will be presenting illustrating, for example, how ITS has helped reduced the time to run computer models from years to hours. Research Computing Services offers a range of courses to postgraduates and staff that will improve your skills in all aspects of Research Computing including programming, high end computing and visualization.

Tuesday 7 December
Ethical Concerns for Conducting Sensitive Interviews
1 – 3pm, Room G30/31, Arthur Lewis Building, University of Manchester
Researchers and practitioners often interview vulnerable people or individuals on sensitive issues. As the person conducting the interview, one needs to be aware of power imbalances, ethical issues regarding confidentiality, safety, and respect, as well as how to conduct the interview – finding the balance between guiding the interview and allowing the interviewee to ‘own’ their specific experience and the telling of it.

To book a place on methods workshops go to

National Resources workshops

Wednesday 17 November 2010
A talk and workshop on Timescapes – a qualitative longitudinal study
Room G30/31, Arthur Lewis Building, University of Manchester
Timescapes is an ESRC-funded qualitative longitudinal study which explores how personal and family relationships develop and change over time. In depth interviews, oral narratives, photographs and other visual documents are being collected for the Timescapes archive. The archive offers exciting possibilities for re-using data for research through time and across the generations. For more information and the booking form please go to


Annual Competition 2010

The methods@manchester annual competition for small grants to support methods-related activities is now open. The competition is open to all staff in the Humanities Faculty, but applications from more junior members of staff will be particularly welcome. (Joint applicants who are outside the Faculty will be welcome.) The scheme is not open to PhD students. For more information go to


Manchester Interdisciplinary Collaboration for Research on Ageing (MICRA)

The Manchester Interdisciplinary Collaboration for Research on Ageing (MICRA) is running a competition calling for research related to ageing:

The aim of MICRA seed-corn funding is to further ageing related research across the University of Manchester. Applications should meet the following criteria:

The proposed research must be related to ageing. Applications are particularly encouraged around the current MICRA themes:

. Health inequalities

. Frailty

. Genetics of ageing

. Musculoskeletal/pain

. Mental health and wellbeing

. Work and retirement

The proposed research must be interdisciplinary (for example, crossing the funding domains of two or more research councils). The proposed research must lead to at least one specific outcome, such as a research proposal for a research council or a working paper.

The deadline for applications is Friday 17 December 2010; submissions should be made via email to

Learn more about MICRA at For queries about seed-corn funding please email


Take part in ESRC’s consultation on future research methods training provision

Participation involves completion of an on-line questionnaire which can be accessed via this link and takes approximately 15 minutes to complete.

As a researcher this is an opportunity for you to express YOUR views on current training provision and new requirements for research training. This consultation will inform the strategic thinking of ESRC with regards to the future provision of training.

For all who participate we are holding a FREE prize draw for £50 worth of Love2Shop Vouchers.

The deadline for receipt of responses is Friday 12th November 2010.

We hope that you will be willing to share your views with us.

All personal information will be processed in accordance with the Data Protection Act. Any queries regarding the processing of personal information should be directed to ESRC’s Data Protection Officer (


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