Developing new research at Campus Fryslân
|Date:||22 November 2021|
Members of the newly formed Knowledge Infrastructures department traveled to the beautiful island of Terschelling for a research retreat. Taking advantage of a teaching-free week, the 9-member strong group stayed in a small island village for three days of discussion, debate and discovery. A blog post about their experiences.
Not only is the department new, but most of its members also joined Campus Fryslân very recently. Team-building and getting to know each other was therefore high on the agenda. Hence, the retreat started out with an overview of the research pursued by each member of the department. Common themes emerged from these sessions. One of the challenges we tackled was to formulate the department’s mission without using jargon! Each session was chaired by a different member, to make the success of the retreat a truly joint effort, and we had a very varied set of activities, ranging from games to nature walks in the forest and dunes landscape to a foraging excursion on the dike.
Our sessions also helped us focus on the larger research lines emerging from our bottom-up overview. We identified the shared interests in infrastructures and methodologies, and on modeling, monitoring and prediction, and related data practices. We also identified a common goal in finding ways to incorporate different kinds and scales of evidence. No matter the topic we are working on, we all aim to create opportunities for more sustainable solutions. Our formal sessions ended with the task of identifying what can enable and support our research, in all kinds of practical and organisational ways.
The retreat was also the occasion to discover this part of Friesland and the innovative approaches to climate change adaptation, such as salinization and the challenge it poses on agriculture.
Salty licorice was also on offer, but this seems to be an acquired taste! We look back on a very successful retreat that will fuel further individual and collective work in the coming year. And plans for the next retreat are already in the making.