AESOP PhD workshop – Itinerary

The AESOP 2013 PhD Workshop will take place in Belfast, Northern Ireland from 10-13 July 2013. The workshop will be carried out in conjunction with the Joint AESOP/ACSP Congress to be held in University College Dublin, Ireland from the 15th to the 19th of July, 2013.

The Workshop will be held in the newly opened Metro Arts Centre (MAC) in Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter ( and is organised jointly by AESOP, AESOP Young Academics Network and the School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Policy at University College Dublin.

All sessions and workshops will be held in the MAC Centre in Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter. The evening reception on 10 July and all lunches will also be provided in the MAC.

The PhD Workshop comprises interactive plenary sessions, mentor workshops and a field trip. The plenary sessions will involve students and mentors in addressing key transferable skills, such as publishing, research ethics and research design.

The mentor workshops provide an opportunity for each student to present their paper in small group workshops, involving intensive mentor and peer feedback. The format of the mentor workshops will be as follows:

The Mentors:

The following scholars will join the Workshop as mentors and facilitators:

And from the host university:


Workshop timetable

Wed 10 July



Meet in foyer of Premier Inn (Cathedral Quarter)

Evening reception (MAC Centre)

(Hot buffet provided)

Thurs 11 July


(including coffee break)

Plenary sessions

Workshop aims and objectives – Dr Mark Scott, UCD

Background: Planning in a contested city, Belfast – Dr Mark Scott, UCD

Seminar on ethics in planning research – Prof. Deborah Peel, University of Ulster

Seminar on publishing – Prof. Heather Campbell, University of Sheffield

Lunch (provided)


(including coffee break)

Mentor workshops**



Dinner (on your own or in groups)

Fri 12 July


Qualitative and quantitative research design in planning research -

Dr Enda Murphy, UCD & Prof. Paul Maginn, University of Western Australia

Coffee break


Mentor workshops continued

Lunch (provided)


Beyond publications: making an impact on policy and practice – panel discussion


Mentor workshops continued – student reflections on research topic, approach, design, and model

Coffee break


After your thesis: preparing for a research/academic career – panel discussion



Dinner (on your own or in groups)

Saturday 13 July


Fieldtrip: The divided city – religion, class and ‘post conflict’ Belfast -

Dr Jenny Muir, Queen’s University Belfast & Dr Mark Scott, UCD

Independent travel to Dublin for AESOP/ACSP Conference



1. You are required to write and submit a paper for the workshop of approximately 6,000 words in length. The paper should be submitted to by 14 June. While each paper may vary (e.g. will depend on your stage of research/study), your paper should include the following elements: introduction, literature/theoretical context, aims/objectives, methods, results (if applicable), future work, discussion/conclusions and references. Students who are close to completing their PhD should also outline the significance and contribution of their work to existing academic or policy debates.

2. Students are required to present this paper in the workshops. Presentations should closely reflect the work outlined in the paper. A laptop and projector will be available for presenting your paper using PowerPoint. Each student will be assigned a workshop group, comprising 8 students and 2 mentors per group by 19 June.

3. All presentations will be allotted a time of 30 minutes, followed by a 15-minute discussion on each paper.

4. Each paper will have a student discussant. The role of the discussant is to read the paper of their assigned presenter and provide a c. 2-3 minute critical appraisal. That means thinking about the following questions: are the aims and objectives clear? Is the literature discussed critically and comprehensively? Does it complement the research aims and objectives? What is the core (potential) contribution of the research to knowledge? Is the methodology sound? Are the conclusions supported by the evidence presented? Does the paper have a logical structure? What are the paper’s main strengths and weaknesses? Each of you will be emailed your assigned paper by 19 June.



Hotel accommodation has been booked for you in the Premier Inn Cathedral Quarter, Belfast (address:, 2-6 Waring Street, Belfast, BT1 2DX), a short 2-3 minute walk from the MAC venue. Your accommodation costs are covered by your fee for the workshop; you will be expected to share your room with one other workshop participant. Please note that on 11th and 12th July, you will have to make your own arrangements for evening meals which are not provided as part of the workshop.

Please inform of the time you expect to arrive in Belfast (on Wednesday 10th July) as soon as you have booked and confirmed your travel arrangements.

Latest News

  1. Registration

    is closed. ... Read More »

  2. Submission

    The closing date for submission of papers has been extended to June 9th. ... Read More »

  3. The preliminary programme is available

    for download ... Read More »

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