Award for being plain, even when not so simple

14th January 2000 at 00:00
RESEARCHERS have a reputation for never writing a simple sentence if there is a mind-numbingly complex alternative.

Even Changing English, a research journal that aimed to appeal to teachers, once told readers: "This paper has contested Hunter's Foucauldian account of the hidden 'real' historical explanation of the formation of the literary subject as a (state sanctioned) quest to reunify the divided problematised aesthetico-ethical self in English."

But the presentation of a Plain English Award to a University of Bristol team has demnstrated that some researchers can explain complicated findings in an uncomplicated way.

The Bristol academics earned the award for their "Plain Facts" publications which make research messages accessible to people with learning and literacy difficulties. The 14 issues of Plain Facts have covered topics such as employment, training, welfare benefits, and crime.

Information about the publications, produced by the Norah Fry Research Centre in Bristol and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, from Dr Ruth Townsley on 0117 923 8137.

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