Overseas Institution Report: Chloe Waterman
Midlands Graduate School DTP student Chloe Waterman (Socio-Legal Studies, University of Birmingham) reporting back after her ESRC-funded Overseas Institution Visit to Linkoping University, Sweden.
Chloe’s research focus is on ‘Legal Decision-Making in Dementia: A conversation analytic study’. As part of her visit Chloe conducted a number of presentations including at the Centre for Dementia Research seminar and a SIS seminar Data session. Additionally Chloe took part in a Social Psychology seminar, where she presented her overall thesis and some examples of her analysis so far (looking at pronoun use to evidence relationality being co-constructed) to members of the psychology department at Linkoping University. Following the presentation, the group undertook a lengthy discussion about the research, particularly focusing on how legal mechanisms differ in Sweden and in the UK. Furthermore she received references regarding different theories of the mind and cognition.
Chloe also undertook meetings with several academics from Linkoping University, where she discussed her research interests, discourse analysis techniques, considered ways to progress her data collection and gained additional methodological, conceptual and normative expertise during the visit.
While in Linkoping, Chloe additionally “took advantage of the opportunity to take part in a PhD work in progress seminar organised for a visiting professor (Heidi Hamilton) who has been working in the field of dementia communication since the 1990’s. I presented my overall thesis in brief and the main questions I am trying to address moving forward. This was then followed by a roundtable discussion with Heidi and Charlotta Plejert and 3 other PhD students (who were also studying dementia and communication with a speech therapy focus), where we shared ideas and references. This was particularly helpful as it allowed me to speak with other early career researchers in a similar area, who though approaching from a different perspective were collecting data in a similar way, in this sense we could discuss the challenges of working with this population group.”
Overall Chloe noted the overseas institution visit will help her progress in the future:
“This visit will certainly make an impact on my PhD, given that the data sessions I presented at will now shape my analysis, and how I proceed with data collection… I hope to have made lasting connections at this institute with regards to my future career and shared research interests discussed. Additionally this visit gave me insight into the Swedish legal system, which though isn’t a focus for my PhD highlights almost the opposite issues being faced, where few-no restrictions are placed on decision making abilities and families can feel helpless when a person with moderate-severe dementia makes legal decisions when they may not have done so previously. This was an issue which was raised multiple times as a comparison to the English law model, and so this is a concern I will now take into consideration as I continue with my PhD.”