Posts By / Kip Jones

ESRC Festival of Social Science @BU features ‘Methods to Diversity’ and the film, Rufus Stone

BU’s involvement in the ESRC Festival of Social Science includes a one-day event entitled, “Pathways to Impact: ageing, diversity, connectivity and community” on Wednesday, November 7, 2012 from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM (GMT) being held at the Executive Business Centre, 7th Floor.

The day will feature stimulating activities and informal discussions about diversity, the potential damage of discrimination experienced by many older gay and lesbian citizens, and what can be done about it. 

Equality South West’s Chief Executive Katie Pratt will start off the day with highlights from their survey, “Pride Progress & Transformation”.

Members of BU’s LGB Research Advisory Committee will be on hand to informally share their experiences of working on BU projects.

A screening of the award winning, Bournemouth produced short film, Rufus Stone will follow Rufus Stone the movie blog.

Following a networking lunch, the big event of the day is the launch the Method Deck, Methods to Diversity – a learning tool to inspire agencies, practitioners and communities to think about diversity within their ageing population. Methods to Diversity is a playful compendium of information, practical tips and engaging exercises to help agencies and community groups think creatively about their approach to working with older lesbian and gay people.

Space is VERY limited (60 participants) and will fill up fast.  If you are interested in attending, please register quickly at

The event is free, including lunch and a set of the Methods to Diversity cards. 

Any questions?  Please contact Dr Lee–Ann Fenge

Case is made for fusion of the Arts and Social Sciences

Kip Jones, Reader in Peformative Social Science, HSC and The Media School makes a case for the potential of arts-based social science to reach audiences and engage communities in an article in The Qualitative Report (Vol 17: 18, 1-8) published electronically today.

 Entitled, “Connecting Research with Communities through Performative Social Science” (PSS), the paper contextualises both the use of the Arts in Social Science, as well as the utility of Social Science in the Arts and Humanities. PSS is conceived of as a fusion of the Arts and Social Sciences, creating a new paradigm where tools from the Arts and Humanities are explored for their utility in enriching the ways in which we investigate Social Science subjects and involve communities in our research efforts and diffusion of our collaborative endeavours. Performative Social Science is redefined in terms of a synthesis that can break down old boundaries, open up channels of communication and empower communities through engagement.

The article harks back the beginnings of PSS by recalling the influential AHRC funded series of workshops, “Social Science in Search of its Muse” held at BU throughout 2006-07, reported in a short video ( This was followed by a Special Issue on Performative Social Science for the online, qualitative journal, Forum: Qualitative Social Research (Jones et al., May, 2008), providing a wide range of examples and manifestations of PSS, with contributions from various disciplines/subject areas, and realized through a wide variety of approaches to research practice.

 Since these early efforts in PSS, the impact of these explorations has been measurable, including several completed PhDs utilizing principles of PSS, many journal articles, films and conference presentations nationally and internationally and further funding by Research Councils UK of research based in Performative Social Science methods.

Jones then turns to examples from his own work to illustrate what happens when Art talks to Social Science and Social Science responds to Art. The benefits of such interaction and interdisciplinarity are outlined in relation to a recently completed project using multi-methods, which resulted in the production and current dissemination of the professional short film, Rufus Stone.

Jones said,Performative Social Science provides the overarching intellectual prowess, strategies and methodological and theoretical bases to engage and unite scholars across disciplines and, in turn, connect researchers’ endeavours with communities and stakeholders. Performative Social Science or a fusion of the arts and sciences are central to both community engagement and as catalysts for change”.

Rufus Stone reviewed in The Qualitative Report

Patricia Leavy, well-known author and innovator, has reviewed Rufus Stone the movie for the on-line qualitative journal, The Qualitative Report.  Entitled, “A Review of Rufus Stone: The Promise of Arts-Based Research” the review is available for download.

Patricia is an independent Author, Researcher and Commentator who lives in Kennebunk, Maine USA. Among her 11 books she is the author of Method Meets Art: Arts-Based Research Practice (Guilford Press), Essentials of Transdisciplinary Research: Using Problem-Centered Methodologies (Left Coast Press) and the research-informed novel Low-Fat Love (Sense Publishers). For more info please visit her website.

Just some of her responses to Rufus Stone the movie:

  • Rufus Stone is both an incredible short film and it embodies all that is best about arts-based research.
  • I am absolutely blown over by how good Rufus Stone is.
  • The film is not only a glaring look at how homophobia and intolerance can shape people’s experiences, but it is also a film very much about looking at who we are, how we became who we are, and how we allow our lives to unfold.
  • Anyone of any age and background can sit and watch this film, understand it, learn from it and emotionally connect to it.
  • This film was as good as most Oscar-nominated shorts, and vastly superior to many.  In my opinion, it was just about as good as a short film gets.

If research is intended to teach, illuminate, shed light on topics of import and challenge our assumptions, Rufus Stone is an exemplary piece of research”.