Minutes from SSC meeting of April 2nd

Present: Mike, Andrew, Carol, Laura

Apologies: Lucy, Joss, Peaceful

Minutes agreed

Website:
Alex happy to help us with our web site. We suggest offering him £200, and will check with Joss who is currently stand-ing in for treasurer.

Workshops/Seminars:

Rituals in Education
Robert Hamm, booked, Saturday 16th April, 10-4.
Croft Street
Bring & share lunch.
Please share poster, everyone!

Distress in the City
Linden West
Suggests 7th July – Mike will book this.
Laura or Andrew offer to put him up if needed. Mike will invite him to arrive early to have dinner/spend some time.

Mike will book mint Lane for Thurs 30th June, and will ask Linden to send reading we can look at on this occasion.

Research Projects:
Mike & Joss beginning to disseminate findings from ISRF project. Conferences in Manchester, Spain and Denmark in April/May/June.

New Leadership Foundation for Higher Education research project: ‘Co-operative Leadership for Higher Education.
Mike & Joss met people from Mondragon.

AGM:
7th May, 11am-4pm

11-12:30 business meeting
12:30-1:30 bring & share lunch
1:30-3:30 Making the cooperative university report workshop.

Mike is booking Croft Street. Will spend part of AGM looking at report, and ready for relaunching SSC!
Will include business meeting.
We need new treasurer!

AOB:
British sociological association: A splinter group has emerged! They’re having a meeting 7 April at Aston university – they have invited SSC. Mike is planning to go.

No course for next term – but two seminars.

Minutes from SSC meeting of March 5th 2016

SSC Monthly Meeting

Saturday 5th March 2016

Apologies: Joss, Lucy

Present: Andrew, Carol, Laura, Mike, Sarah, Wendy

Read & agreed last month’s minutes

Curriculum reports: SSI

Andrew outlined our recent seminars looking at dystopian novels, and questioning their relevance and usefulness.  Many people struggled to do the reading in advance, especially whole novels, and we agreed that people should come even not having done the reading, and we will spend some of the time reading during the seminar.

Curriculum reports: Cybernetics with Raul Espejo

People are getting lots out of these sessions, and are stretched by them.  These sessions are attracting a slightly different group of people than our SSI regulars.  Last seminar is a week on Tuesday.

SSI people will discuss what we would like to follow after the Cybernetics course, and brings some suggestions to the next meeting.

Gnawed by Rats

Unable to attend today’s meeting due to snow, but they have an event coming up on Friday 18th March, 6:30-9pm at the Pavilion Building.  Sarah will put this on twitter and the blog.

Website

Joss suggested that we ask Alex (from Ragged University) if he would be interested to do some work on improving and modernising our website for us.  We should pay him for this.  We agreed that this would be a good idea; Mike will get back to Joss to ask Alex.

ISRC Project

We have had the final workshop on transnational networks, which was well attended.  Joss & Mike have written a short article to publish in a journal, and will be working on further articles and presenting it at conferences.  Next SSC needs to prepare a report to share at our AGM, to see how it might develop the SSC.  There is a lot of interest in the establishment of a cooperative university.

Maria & her colleagues are setting up a Cooperative Institute for Trans-National Studies, much like Mondragon in structure; they will charge a fee; a multi-stakeholder coop; working on getting accreditation through the autonomous university in Mexico.  SSC could use them as a proxy accreditation institute.

Mike got a grant this week from the Leadership Foundation, on Cooperative leadership, and putting it into a higher education context.  Suma, Mondragon, a cooperative school, and John Lewis will all be case studies.  Create a tool/vehicle/critical device to assess cooperativeness within university.  It’s one year; £10K, to include a part time research assistant (who can speak Spanish), with a steering committee.

Mondragon delegates are coming over to visit, to look at Student as Producer and what the SSC are doing.

Rituals in Education – Robert Hamm

Joss has invited Robert on 16th April.  We need to check the status of this, and help with advertising.

Distress in the City – Linden West

Linden has written a book on Stoke-on-Trent and the rise of Islamophobia.  Mike will invite him get back to him to arrange a date for him to visit.  We need to get some basic posters made.

Antipode Project

Grant available for scholar-activist fellowship.  “Hull City of Culture” is gentrifying Hull, and resulting in the enclosing and privatising of previously open and public spaces.  Campaign is currently happening around keeping a school building public instead of selling it off; she would like help documenting it.  The SSC could be recognised as an institutional partner in the grant, which would mean we would handle the money.  It would cover materials and space, but not time.  Do we want to contribute? Do we have the knowledge & skills? What would we do with the money?

There were concerns raised about complications around, and the big responsibility of handling the funds, in partnership with people we have not yet had chance to build up trust with.  Might it divert our energies?

There was a concern raised that Lincoln is a long way from Hull – we are not aware of what is going on there; would we spend a lot of the money on travelling between?  Does this make sense as a partnership?  We do have people who are experienced in facilitating community learning who could offer this support on a consultancy capacity.  We are not local enough; we don’t have a capacity; our budget is not set up for this sort of thing.

Savings Pools

A pool is in the process of being set up, including contracts and legality.  It is a closed group, but we will run further workshops in future, and support who are interested in setting up a pool.

AGM

We propose Saturday 7th May at Croft Street Community Centre for AGM.  It will include business meeting, and look at ISRC report and research project and how it can support the SSC, and how we might review our governance structures, and invite people who have been part of the project to contribute (rather than guest speakers).

Actions from last AGM: workshop on decision making process & technology (hasn’t happened yet).  Why hasn’t this happened – there isn’t the energy?  We will discuss paper on consensus decision making at SSI, and bring this back to AGM.

Re-visit values at AGM.

Short course on feminist social theory and gender, offered by Andrea, Sarah and Lucy – this has been disrupted by people’s circumstances, but the issues are still of interest.

Suggestion that each of us write 200 words about who we are, why we’re involved, etc.   Let’s do this ready to re-launch the website.  (We will ask for this when we advertise the AGM)

Stephen has asked to stand down from treasurer’s role.  We need to appoint positions at AGM – treasurer, secretary, etc.

AOB

Next meeting Saturday 2nd April.

Wendy asks to talk about the origins of capitalism, and Helen Meiksins-Wood’s work.

SSC planning meeting minutes 13th February 2016

Attendees: Joss, Laura, Lucy, Andrew, Wendy, Rob Goemans, Sara Ahmed, Hadiza Abdulrahman

Apologies: Paul, Mike, Sarah

1. Minutes from last meeting

Social Cybernetics and SSI are running alternate weeks.  A lot of interest from the last SSI course when Mike circulated some notes.

2. Curriculum this term

SSI – try and find the notes from the planning session, we are leading a week each starting with looking at 1984.

Cybernetics – scholars from as far as London are attending.  Feedback is that it is interesting, stimulating and challening, but some are struggling with new terminology and concepts.  Pitched at a very high level.

3. ISRF

The last workshop has now been run and notes have been circulated amongst participants. There will be an online focus group on Thursday which will be attended in place of SSI.  Can join in from home or all meet at Mint Lane.  Looking at co-operation among cooperatives, an international network, need to think bigger than just one university.

 

There is the possibility of a further grant to do more research on Co-operative higher education.

Joss and Mike have had good discussions with people from Mondragon co-operative university in Spain, as well as UniCoop in Mexico.

4. Community Art group

Gnawed by Rats – Laura has contacted them but as yet they have not got back in touch.

5. Savings pool

Some people who attended the worskshop are interested in setting up a savings pool.  There has been discussion on the public/private nature of savings pools.  Another workshop will be put on.

6. Curriculum offer

½ day/ 1day workshop has been offered to SSC on the theory of rituals in education.  There is interest in the group for this.

7. Birbeck – Mike has offered to go and speak, if anyone is interested in joining Mike, please let him know.  This will be 25th April.

8. Paulo Vittoria is coming back to Lincoln on a research project Februay 9-17th.  Initial meeting will be confirmed by Joss.  Joss will circulate the research proposal.

9. Planning for AGM May 2016

Need to book the venue, Joss to confirm the date, Mike will look at the minutes from the last AGM, need to give at least 1 months notice, we shall publish an agenda in the next few weeks.

A.O.B – Wendy asked new comers to the group if they wouldn’t mind writing a short paragraph on what they would like to get from attending the SSC so we can look at accommodating their needs.

Notes for Planning Meeting 9th January

Social Science Centre – Notes for Planning Meeting 9th January, 12 noon, 12 Mint Lane Lincoln

Present: Peaceful, Paul, Mike, Laura, Sarah, Lucy, Joss
Apologies: Andrew, Gerald and Martha
Laura chaired the meeting. We spent the first part of the meeting catching up with what we had all been up to over the Christmas vacation. Peaceful is living in the woods, Laura has a new job. Any issues to be discussed under matters arising were to be covered in the main agenda.
New course – Social Cybernetics
Prof Raul Espejo is to run a course on Social Cybernetics starting on 21st of Jan – for more details see link:
Mike is to publicise this event through the usual channels, e.g., The Lincolnite
SSI
The Sociological Imagination Course to start again on 14th Jan. Mike and Lucy to meet up to discuss programme and facilitation. Notes from last term’s session have been written up and can be seen at link here – to be posted
Cooperative University research
Cooperative University – Independent Social Research Foundation research project continues to go well. The last workshop on Transnational Networking is to be held on the 29th of January.  Those present at the meeting were reminded that they were very well. Publicity and invitations has gone out about the event.
Joss and Mike have submitted a grant proposal for £10k to the Leadership Foundation in Higher Education to further develop this research on the topic of Co-operative Leadership
LCDA
Lincolnshire Cooperative Development Association. Mike and Joss are now co-directors of the LCDA. For further information about the LCDA see link here:
Savings Pools
Following the meeting to consider setting up a local money savings pool, Laura is to arrange a meeting on a Thursday evening at Mint Lane on the 28th of January at 7pm.
Gnawed by Rats 
Gnawed by Rats are an art group, hired as artists in residence to organise public art events to celebrate the anniversary of the Charta of the Forest. We agreed to invite to the planning meeting on the 5th of March 12 – 1 at Mint Lane to discuss how we might collaborate on the theme of ‘the commons’.
AGM
We need to make preparations for our AGM later this year. Mike will look at last year’s minutes to make sure all matters arising have been/are being dealt with.
Date of next meeting – 6th Feb, Lucy to chair

Minutes from 5th December 2015 general meeting

SSC Cooperative Meeting

5th December 2015

Present: Wendy, Mike, Andrew, Joss, Laura Apologies: Lucy, Sarah, Mahmood

Last meeting’s minutes have been shared and agreed

Radical Histories Conference – 1-3 July 2016

“Towards a Radical Future of Education” – Wendy will get in touch to see if it is to late to submit a proposal. If not, Wendy offers to write a proposal and send to mailing list for comments.

SSC to support Wendy to attend, funds permitting.

Validation of Courses and Awards

Wendy asked about “next steps” for validating work. Joss described the various routes that SSC could support scholars to get accreditation from the state, which would include working in partnership with another university, e.g. the Open University, or with an accreditation body regulated by OFQUAL to award degrees. This route would have high resource and administration implications and would be suitable if we have hundreds of students. Alternatively, SSC can support scholars to obtain a PhD by publication, and they would need to apply to a university to do this.

Marx Law of Value

Wendy requested a lecture to help her move forward with her study.

Mike & Joss offer to share some online links via email (reading and recorded talks).

Curriculum for next term

Joss is keen to offer a ‘Politics of Archiving: Archiving Politics’ online course, supported by TESA, a US workers’ cooperative. It’s unlikely he will be able to do it this academic year though due to other commitments.

Raul Espejo http://syncho2.blogspot.co.uk/ offers a course in Social Cybernetics. Laura suggested that he might offer it on alternate weeks with SSI course in the new year. Mike will discuss dates with him. We would want to advertise this course.

Andrew, Wendy, Mike and Laura are all keen for SSI course to continue.

Gary offered to lead an SSC session in the new year – Mike will arrange a date with him.

 

Anarchist Research Group

Wendy gave feedback on a trip with Cassie and Lucy to the MayDay rooms. They gave a short talk about the SSC, and had interesting conversations with others who were there.

Others from the anarchist group suggest using libraries as a radical public space for meeting.

Cassie offers to do a write up.

Update on ISRF project

Project is continuing according to plan.

It is reassuring the ideas coming out of the focus group and workshops are similar to our own ideas.

People attending come from across the world and have lots of Cooperative experience.

Joss has put in an abstract to do a talk at the Cooperative College.

Savings Pools

Laura will organise another workshop in the new year for people who are interested but missed the last one, and a subsequent meeting for those who decide to start a Lincoln Savings Pool. It will likely include people who are not currently scholars at the SSC, but Laura will send all info to the SSC email, and put info on the website.

Christmas Event

Mike invites us to his place on 19th December.

AOB

Laura is getting a DBS check through the Voluntary Services Centre; others can get a DBS check but would need to pay for it. Mike (Secretary) agreed to file the VSC paperwork with other SSC documents.