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Researchers justify their existence

Researchers specialising in race, class and gender are aiming to justify the relevance of their work for teachers, parents and young people at a series of seminars and workshops in the Institute of Education, London.

Like the BERA Internet conference (see right), the meetings are, however, also designed to draw educationists, policy-makers, and classroom teachers into a wide-ranging discussion about not only the researchers' work but the future shape of the research agenda.

The events are being staged by the Centre for New Ethnicities Research at the University of East London and will be held during the spring and summer terms.

Richard McKeever, one of the organisers, said that although studies focusing on race and equality were of increasing importance to society, such research was being put in jeopardy by funding cuts and attempts to shift the focus away from controversial issues.

"Our purpose is to demonstrate that much of the recent research addressing broad academic questions to do with "post-coloniality" and "eurocentrism" is directly and intimately related to the everyday realities of growing up in multiracial - and sometimes multiracist - communities," he said. "Much of this research engages with the practical concerns of teachers."

The speakers at the first seminar in the Institute's Clarke Hall - to be held on Wednesday, February 25 (6pm) - will be Phil Cohen, University of East London, Mairtin Mac an Ghail, University of Sheffield, and Cecile Wright, Nottingham Trent University.

Further information from: Richard McKeever, projects and development officer, Centre for New Ethnicities Research, University of East London, Longbridge Road, Dagenham RM8 2AS (tel 0181-590 7000 ext 2632).

David Budge

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