CALL FOR PROPOSALS: Harnessing the Power of Campus Performance (CATR/ACRT/Congress)


CALL FOR PROPOSALS: “Energizing Communities: Harnessing the Power of Campus Performance”

Canadian Association for Theatre Research Annual Conference (

Part of the Congress of Social Sciences and Humanities (

May 28th – 31st 2016 / Calgary, AB, CANADA

Seminar Coordinator: Patrick Finn (University of Calgary)

For the past four years, a group of scholars from Canada, The United States, the United Kingdom, and New Zealand have been gathering to discuss the value of campus productions. The group first met at Congress in Victoria in 2013, and the conversation began with a look at the pedagogical value of various components of campus production including the ways different institutions evaluate the merit of this work. At last year’s Congress, the group began a process of testing peer-evaluation for campus productions in order to focus our work. Our experiences are different, and no two members of the group share exactly the same vision of the future, but we all care deeply about the value of campus performance, and strive to support its proper evaluation and dissemination. This seminar invites participants to reflect on the value of on-campus performance as pedagogy, service, and particularly as research. Past participation is not required.

Questions to explore might include:

  • Can on-campus performance be research?
  • How might we better evaluate campus productions?
  • Is peer review of on campus production possible?
  • Many programs accept reviews from print newspapers as equivalent to peer review for tenure review. Given the current state of critical writing, is this an acceptable form of evaluation?
  • Does the tenure system allow – and even promote – performance research that could not be pursued by the amateur and professional communities?
  • How might a network of peer review help expand research impact?
  • Is it ethical to ask scholars to participate in the professional season to qualify for tenure when that season runs parallel to the academic year?
  • Is it the best use of limited hiring dollars to send professors off campus to conduct research when they were hired to pursue research with students benefiting from proximity to their work?
  • How sustainable are the practices of committing labour and materials to productions that are not contributing to scholarly research?
  • What message does accepting low or no value for campus performance send?

The seminar is allotted 3-hours during the conference. Participants will be required to submit work in advanceof the meetings in order to make the best use of our time.

Applicants are asked to submit a 250-word proposal and a short bio (50 to 100 words) to Dr. Patrick Finn: pfinn by January 15, 2016.