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Monday, December 28, 2015

'Conference Fatigue' In Academia

Is ‘Conference Fatigue’ Harming Academia?

Depictions of conferences as being dull and exhausting make it ‘almost impossible’ to imagine them as places of intellectual engagement, scholar warns

Chris Havergal | December 24, 2015

Awkward small talk, awkward disco dancing, and even more awkward sex: if generations of researchers are to be believed, these are key features of many academic conferences.
But a scholar has warned that the comic denigration of conferences as dull and exhausting events has become so pervasive that it is now “almost impossible” to imagine them as places of productive thinking or intellectual engagement.
Emily Henderson, assistant professor at the University of Warwick’s Centre for Education Studies, said that there was a risk of a vicious circle: that because academics have been instilled with the idea that conferences will be boring and embarrassing, this was how they actually experienced them.

...conferences were an “important site” for academic mobility, knowledge production and the development of academic practice; and that there was a need to develop new representations of these events that challenged the fatigue narrative.

<more at; related links:  (“Conference fatigue? Representations of the in/significance of academic conferences”. Emily Henderson) and (How not to enhance a presentation. What could be easier than adding audio-visuals to your conference paper? John Corner on waiting for the gift of sound and vision. September 4, 2014)>

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