ICM836: Third research segment (3/3) & Final Reflection

Third Research Segment – Due 7/5

 

By now, you know how this goes.

  1. You will identify five (5) product innovators/innovations. Note that the products you feature do not all need to be new innovations — perhaps the way they are communicated about is the innovative aspect.
  2. You will add the to  our collective map (link here). Please simply pin the organizations you chose to feature in the map, as follows:
  3. Then, describe on your own blog these aspects for each of your organizations:
  • Name and website/other contact info (if applicable)
  • Geographical scope  (in 1-3 sentences)
  • Main aim/s — mission and specific goals (in 1-3 sentences)
  • Concrete activities (including links if possible to knowledge, resources, materials, findings, etc.)   (in 1-3 sentences)
  • Innovation: Why did you choose this organization/project/individual? What made you identify it/him/her as innovative? Please be as specific as possible and think of the purpose of the research: to identify best practices, approaches,  even models, to be learned from,shared and even adapted.  (in 1-5 sentences)

That’s all. Due 7/5 at midnight

 

Final Reflection – Due 7/11

“Opportunities for innovation in MH”

Background

Your your weekly research assignment has focused on innovators in three different fields of menstrual health: advocacy, education, and product innovation. Some of you have already identified intersections and overlaps between these categories. You have also perhaps identified gaps in issues to be addressed, or audiences to be reached. Or, you may have noticed opportunities in terms of campaigning or other communication forms.

Final Reflection Assignment

Now it is your turn to innovate. Compose your final research reflection about some kind of innovation that you could see happening in the field:

  • A specific way to communicate (say, social media campaigns); or
  • A specific issue (say, school absenteeism or confronting religious beliefs ); a specific region (say, the Middle East or Latin America)…
  • Or you can identify opportunities for collaboration between innovators, either across geographical borders, or across the sectors of water, sanitation & hygiene (WASH), gender, education and sexual & reproductive health (SRH) and/ or the fields of advocacy, education, and/or products.

Practicalities

  • You can use all the material you collectively collected about advocates, educators, and product innovators. Here’s the link to everyone’s blogs.
  • You will either write a 8-10-page research report or create a 7-10 minute video/podcast report.
  • In each case, you will also submit a separate list of references you have used.

Option 1: Written Report

  • Think about your report in terms of a position paper rather than in terms of a conventional academic research essay. You are making a recommendation of sorts in that you are highlighting opportunities for innovation. While you will argue for your case with evidence, and you will include references in your text, you do want to convince the reader of your practical ideas. That is your main goal. The link above gives a wonderfully simple and effective outline for a position paper. You do not need to follow the outline necessarily but it will you an idea of how to think about organizing your information:

An introduction

  • Identification of the issue
  • Statement of the position

The body

  • Background information
  • Supporting evidence or facts
  • A discussion of different sides of the issue (in your case, this could be, for instance, cultural barriers to a campaign you would like to propose vis-a-vis the impact of the campaign; or possible benefits and challenges of a collaboration you would like to initiate).

A conclusion

  • Suggested courses of action
  • Possible solutions
  • 8-10-pages written reflection including the list of references (1.5 space, 12 pt Times New Roman or equivalent). Feel free to include a graph or an image but those should not exceed one page total of the length of the paper.
  • Due on Tuesday, 7/11, at midnight.

 

Option 2: Audio or video

  • See the above; but instead of writing a paper, you can create a video presentation with the same aim. Imagine, say, that you have been invited to pitch your ideas in a conference or on a virtual platform. You can naturally use visualizations (images, other video), or, sounds.
  • I want to give you this option since more and more professional communication is done in other formats than text — and since we have sought to try different kind of learning and communicating in this course anyway.
  • If you are not familiar with video-making or podcasting, there are tons of free resources online — just google them! Let me assure you this is not a technology assignment. So, if you always wanted to try creating a video or a podcast, use this opportunity to do so!
  • 8-10 minutes, plus a written list of references. Please do not email me a video or audio file: those will be too large for the SJU email service to handle. Instead, upload your work to a Google Drive, or, Dropbox, or Youtube, Vimeo, or link/embed it to your blog… and share the link with me via email (together with the references).
  • Due on MONDAY, 7/11, at midnight.

Please find these instructions, and the list of the extra resources you collected a few weeks back, here.

 

Danielle Keiser will utilize your research and insights in developing her Menstrual Health Hub, with appropriate references to your work. I am sure she will keep us posted of the next developments!

 

Good luck! As always, let me know if you have any questions!

ICM836: Second research segment (2/3)

ICM 836 Research: EDUCATION innovators in menstrual health

 

Dear all, our crowdsourced project continues!

Your 5 advocates are due tonight (6/21) at midnight on your own blog.

Here are the detailed instructions from the last week’s post

This coming week is dedicated to educators. Keep in mind, as communication experts, that there is a distinct difference to the communicative process of teaching, or of raising general awareness (for instance to aid fundraising for projects).

Educators: Organizations, projects, individuals creating and implementing innovative ways to teach about menstruation / confront menstrual myths / taboos. 

  1. You will identify five (5) education innovators/innovations as per the instructions.
  2. You will add the to  our collective map (link here)Please simply pin the organizations you chose to feature in the map, as follows:
  3. Then, describe on your own blog these aspects for each of your organizations:
  • Name and website/other contact info (if applicable)
  • Geographical scope  (in 1-3 sentences)
  • Main aim/s — mission and specific goals (in 1-3 sentences)
  • Concrete activities (including links if possible to knowledge, resources, materials, findings, etc.)   (in 1-3 sentences)
  • Innovation: Why did you choose this organization/project/individual? What made you identify it/him/her as innovative? Please be as specific as possible and think of the purpose of the research: to identify best practices, approaches,  even models, to be learned from,shared and even adapted.  (in 1-5 sentences)

That’s all.

A tip: While doing the second segment of this data gathering, you can already begin to ask yourself questions: How do these innovators differ from those advocates? Are some organizations doing both? How does that work? And, what is the difference between advocacy and educational communication? Can you even detect different audiences, or different ideological frameworks within advocates and educators? … Or, whatever you find interesting, surprising, important… These questions just as a prelude to your final research reflection, instructions of which you will receive next week.

Need clarifications?

As always, feel free to email/Skype me, or post your question as a comment below.

Questions to Danielle Keiser? Mail to: dikeiser@gmail.com or find her on Skype: danielle.keiser

 

Due in a week, on 6/28 at midnight, on your own blog.

ICM836: Research!

Welcome to the first research session of the course! We are discussing a real-life mapping study every Tuesday.

Rationale

The reason as to why we engage  in a separate “research track” in this course is manifold.

First, feminist (media) studies have not only addressed “women’s issues” but also challenged mainstream academic paradigms by unveiling scholarly biases. (To give a simple but famous example:  History [his-story] as a discipline has been criticized because of its focus on the public sphere, and that sphere has traditionally been dominated by men, at least in the Western countries. We know plenty of the life of kings, little of the lives of ordinary housewives…) Feminist studies have thus questioned the nature of knowledge, and also embraced new methodologies, including valuing experiences of the private sphere.

Second, quite evidently, our research effort also showcases the importance, and practices, of scholarly and applied research in global development.

Third, we get to be of service, as communication experts! See below.

 

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Topic

Approximately 52% of the female population is of reproductive age, and most of these women and girls menstruate each month. However, both communities and systems players have largely overlooked menstrual health.

– FSG Report

Menstrual hygiene management (MHM) has been a dominant approach to the issue of menstruation in the field of development studies and practice, promoted by the sub-field  called WASH, that is, issues of water, sanitation, and hygiene.

In the recent years, a more inclusive concept menstrual health has become an increasingly recognized. Menstruation is a taboo topic in many, many cultures. No wonder that research and resources around menstrual health are still scattered.

In many ways, this is a perfect topic for us since we are working on global feminism and the media: Menstrual health is a significant factor in many facets for social, cultural, environmental, and economic development; and it is the kind of “silenced” issue that feminist research has worked to uncover and understand. In other words:

Menstrual health is an encompassing term that includes both menstrual hygiene management (MHM) as well as the broader systemic factors that link menstruation with health, well-being, gender, education, equity, empowerment, and rights.

– FSG Report

 

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For five weeks in June-July 2016, we will examine different aspects of menstrual health and their relation to global development, especially from the perspective of the role of communication and the media.

Collaboration

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We will collaborate with Danielle Keiser, one of the key experts in menstrual health advocacy and communication.

We will have the pleasure of assisting her with her project on creating a global online information hub about menstrual health.

 

Please view Danielle Keiser’s introduction video to the theme, her work, and the project at hand, here.

 

Specifics

Today we focus on getting familiar with the topic.

From next week on, you will examine three groups of actors working in the field of menstrual health. You will spend one week researching each group, i.e., three weeks in total:

  1. Advocates: Organizations, projects, individuals disseminating information to raise general awareness and/or seeking to influence policy. (Assignment given: 6/14)
  2. Educators: Organizations, projects, individuals creating and implementing innovative ways to teach about menstruation / confront menstrual myths / taboos. (6/21)
  3. Product innovators: Organizations, projects, individuals creating innovative products and/or communicating about them in an innovative way. (6/28)

Want to know more already? Here are the detailed instructions.

We will get to them for real next week.

Each week, we will also address one aspect of the research contributions of feminist studies — be it methodologies, ethics, or feminist epistemology.

Assignment

This week, we will familiarize ourselves with the issue.

Danielle Keiser has selected three introductory readings for us:

  1. Compiled Findings from Studies on Menstrual Hygiene Management of Schoolgirls in Ethiopia, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe by SNV, the Netherlands Development Organization
  2. Around the World in 28 Periods

 

Take a look at each text. They will help you in your future research.

Choose one of the text and write a critical, compact, summary reflection of it for your blog. Please address the following questions about the text of your choice: What do you think will be important in terms of our research, mapping the key actors in the field? In addition: Can you relate any of the stories and information in your culture, your life, your experiences, stories you’ve heard? Finally, do some online research and include another menstrual health information resource or a news item, relevant to your reflection, as a link in your blog post. (I will collect and share your additional resources with everyone.)

300-400 words (only). Due in a week, Tue 6/14, at midnight.

As always, if you have any questions, email or ask below as a comment!