Wednesday, 21 March 2012

TDC Update: Spring into Summer

Rosemarie Fitton and her students are redesigning the TDC
The Transdisciplinary Common Room (TDC) is a living experiment in finding ways to build transdisciplinary collaboration across faculties and with external partners.  Membership currently stands at 130 staff and postgrad students within DMU plus 9 Associate Members drawn from our partners the RSA and the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership. Our recent audit of transdisciplinary working attracted 115 respondents. We are currently evaluating that data and will report on it next semester.

This Spring we have taken the first steps towards creating a pleasant and stimulating environment. Rosemarie Fitton and her Art & Design students have decorated the space in a beautifully engaging style which is designed to remind us that the TDC is a place for coffee, tea and conversation. They are still keen to incorporate your contributions so do contact Rosemarie at  if you can help. The kitchen is well-equipped and  I’m pleased to say that members have consistently taken good care of it - no mouldy mugs in the sink for us! One problem has been the lack of fresh milk so we plan to add a collection tin where members contribute 10p per drink. If you need to buy milk or other supplies for the kitchen, you can just reclaim the cost from the tin.

Our first series of events featured a total of 22 Brown Bag Lunchtime sessions and Afternoon Seminars as we steadily built up a regular presence. Many of you have arrived ready-prepared, lunch in hand, to gather around a shared pot of tea and discuss topics ranging from critical thinking to design to storyworlds and everything in between. External guests have included Matthew Taylor, Carolyn Handler Miller and, this coming Friday 23rd, Lord Frank Judd. We’re gradually adding speakers’ slides to the blog as we receive them. The final Brown Bag session will take place next Wednesday 28th when Annette Crisp will share her experiences of working with avatars.

But remember that you don’t have to attend an event to visit the TDC. Quite a number of you have visited simply to meet colleagues and take time out to think and talk.

After Easter we’re experimenting with two new formats. All events will be listed on the Calendar with more information on the blog.

After Easter we’re replacing the Brown Bag lunches and afternoon seminars with a weekly gathering every Wednesday at 4pm. They will run from 18th April to 27th June. The usual format will be a video, talk or workshop followed by tea, cake and general socialising. We are also open to suggestions for something a little out of the ordinary! We have a small budget for external speakers, so if there is someone you'd like to invite and host, please contact to discuss. And as ever, we welcome your offers to contribute.  Contact Sue to discuss your idea or just complete this form 

The first Teatime session will be ‘Modelling with Metaphor and Transdisciplinary Research’ by Jackie Calderwood, a sociable, participatory introduction to Clean Language and Symbolic Modelling, with the invitation to explore our visions for a flourishing TDC. 4pm Wednesday 18th April 2012

The TDC is not bookable for private meetings but you’re very welcome to arrange to meet colleagues there or organise a group for reading, discussion, your own Brown Bag lunch, or even a Jelly work-together ! Jellies are the latest craze in the social media world - see 

All you need to do is (1) check the calendar to make sure the day and time you have chosen don’t clash with something else. (2) Send  the title, date and time of your event, plus any repeats, and she will add them to the calendar. (3) Promote your event in any way you like. To advertise it in the weekly DMU events listing, contact 

We hope you’ve enjoyed your first three months in the TDC and we look forward to seeing you there soon.

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