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Forum - Parish News

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Forum - Parish News Coventry and its associated parishes - historically grounded sustainable development

  1. I'm teaching on Warwick University's new degree Global Sustainable Development. In September I'm going to be leading a new second year module on Local Sustainable Development and taking Coventry as our case study. 

    Students will be undertaking learning through research and the creation of a historically grounded account of contemporary sustainable development situation. They will be free to define the themes as they have reason to justify, working at the scale of a whole city, for example concerning the broad economic history of the city its social and cultural implications. However, I would also like them to have the opportunity to interpret 'local' at a small scale, such as particular areas of the city, communities and their unique development histories and contemporayr issues. I feel the City's parishes could be a very relevant unit of investigation.

    In order to support research based learning, I want to connect with as many academic and non-university experts, who might be able to support student work, either with min-talks, interviews or perhaps suggested themes and associated reading materials and sources. We will sadly not have time to do much primary historical research (artifacts, archives etc), but would like to draw on tertiary sources and expertise.

    Therefore, I'd love to hear from anyone who has knowledge of parish history that they feel in some way might connect to helping to explain the contemporary state of Coventry, ideally as related to the spheres of sustainable development: the economic, the social and the environmental - but also the cultural and religious.

    Many thanks and all the best,

    Alastair Smith

    Senior Teaching Fellow

    Global Sustainable Developement

    School of Cross-faculty Studies

    University of Warwick





  2. This sounds like a very interesting venture, Alastair - one approach might be to contact specific parishes directly (e.g. via online listings like For past projects, My-Parish has had good responses from both clergy and members of various parish groups. It would help, I think, for students to have a clear set of questions/themes and specific ideas about who they'd like to talk to (e.g. members of parish councils, bellringers, long-standing parishioners etc). Good luck with the module.


  3. Hi Beat,

    Sounds like a really good suggestion on seeking out specific parishes. As the research will respond to student interest, we will have more specifics as we begin work. But for now, building a means of communciation and any key types of people to approach is really useful - so your thoughts are really apreciated. 

    Thanks now,