As part of the workshop you will be invited to participate in one of the following activities:
Dr Ash Watson,
Senior Research Fellow, UNSW
Dr Ash Watson is a Senior Research Fellow at UNSW Sydney, with the ARC Centre of Excellence for Automated Decision-Making and Society and the Centre for Social Research in Health. Her research uses creative and qualitative methods to explore how people live with digital technologies and imagine the future. She is Fiction Editor of The Sociological Review, author of the novel Into the Sea (Brill, 2020), and the creator/editor of So Fi Zine (sofizine.com), an open access publication for sociological fiction, poetry and visual art.
PhD Student, Deakin University
Samantha Hauw is a PhD student at Deakin University, supervised by Anna Halafoff and Andrew Singleton. She completed an honours thesis on conscious dance and spirituality under the supervision of Dr Anna Halafoff at Deakin, tutors undergraduate students in the sociology of religion, and is a research
assistant on the Australian Spirituality: Wellness, Wellbeing and Risks ARC Project.
Activity 3: Lego Serious Play
Facilitated by Laura Simpson Reeves
LEGO® Serious Play® is a facilitated, small group workshop method. It was originally developed within the Lego Group for strategic thinking in business in the ‘90s and early 2000s, but became open access in 2010. Since then, the method has been adapted and used for coaching, teaching, research, community development, and more. The focus is on storytelling and metaphors, not artistic skills, and so this approach can help participants to externalise abstract concepts, and make the intangible tangible. For research, this can be a great data collection tool to help understand participant perspectives on topics such as identity, poverty, agency, development, and more. The method involves participants going through a four-step process. First, the facilitator poses a challenge or a question. Second, the participants build their answer using Lego bricks. Participants then describe their model to the rest of
the group. Finally, participants write a short caption or note to ‘capture’ the model – and maybe even take a photograph. Participants in this workshop will have the opportunity to take part in a mini version of this process, exploring ideas around spirituality and religion.
Laura Simpson Reeves
PhD Candidate, The University of Queensland
Laura Simpson Reeves is a PhD candidate, senior research assistant and sessional academic at The University of Queensland. She is an experienced qualitative social researcher focused on understanding lived experiences of social inequality and inequity. Laura work with vulnerable and marginalised groups at the nexus of culture and disadvantage, especially around ethnicity, gender and sexuality, poverty, and experiences of exclusion and discrimination. Her particular focus and interest in diaspora and issues around belonging, identity, and social cohesion/isolation.
Activity 4: Tarot Reading in Precarious Times
Facilitated by Anastasia Murney
In this participatory session, I will facilitate a collaborative Tarot reading. Tarot is a practice that unfolds through a deck of playing cards, used for divination or entertainment. In a typical reading, the querent (or questioner) comes to the reader with a problem for which they are seeking guidance. This reading
will respond to a question based on participant responses to a questionnaire on the general theme of ‘crisis’ (circulated in advance of the session). The reading will unfold through the interpretative labour of myself and the participants. The symbolic language of the Tarot offers a way to recast the problem, to step back from conventional methods of problem-solving and open space for alternative possibilities.
Sessional Lecturer, UNSW
Anastasia Murney is a Sessional Lecturer at UNSW Art & Design on the unceded lands of the Bidjigal and Gadigal people. She holds a PhD in contemporary art theory. Her research examines the intersections between art, activism, and environmental futures. She has published her research in peer reviewed journals such as Third Text (2015), Coils of the Serpent (2023), and Journal of Visual Culture (2023). She is also the Managing Editor of the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Art.