'Devolved, Diverse and Interdependent: Making Professional Connections'

Wednesday 22nd to Friday 24th June 2016
Ulster University, Derry, N.Ireland

This year's conference will be hosted by colleagues at the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland.

The annual residential conference is an opportunity for members and guests to spend an extended time together, to reflect on practice, present research papers and engage in workshops/seminars. This years location will afford the opportunity to engage with the cultural story of Derry and visit youth and community work practice settings. The Annual Conference is also when our Annual General Meeting takes place, members are elected to committee roles and the action plan for 2016-17 is discussed with members.


The Theme: 'Devolved, Diverse and Interdependent: Making Professional Connections' 

Youth and Community work is a devolved matter across the nations in the UK and Ireland. Our policy, practice and the profession are increasingly being shaped by local and regional contexts and by devolved administrations. In a context of localism and regionalism, the conference will ask: how can we explore this diversity and difference and reflect on, identify and share our commonly held principles and strengths? Can we acknowledge and explore how practice can and does have a different focus (and emphasis) across the regions, but also identify core and commonly held principles and approaches that underpin all our work? And to what extent does youth and community work exist as an interdependent community of practice across the British Isles? We will explore what this interdependence means for and look like in the arenas of practice, our profession and the training of professionals; and ask can we develop a diverse and interdependent sector that celebrates and connects to our shared strengths across the UK, Ireland and with our international partners across Europe and the rest of the globe?


Call for Papers and Workshops: Submission closed for contributors on 29th January.

Facilitated by Janet Batsleer (Manchester Metropolitan University) and Christine Smith (University of St Mark and St John, Plymouth), there has been an open call for paper presentations and seminars on our theme. All submissions were received by 29th January with contributors notified in w/c 22nd February. Please follow the link in the right hand column for a full list of confirmed contributors and papers. 


Papers and Seminars at the conference will address one or more of the following:

  1. Distinctly regional and responsive interpretations of youth and community work
  2. Principles and values that underpin professional identity amidst diversification of practice
  3. New themes and responses to Youth and Community Work education and training
  4. Association, collaboration and partnership - Examples of emerging interdependence in the sector
  5. Internationalisation - a global perspective on youth and community work education and practice


The Venue: University of Ulster, Magee Campus, Derry/Londonderry, Northern Ireland

The Community and Youth Work team at the University of Ulster, Magee Campus, will host the conference for 2016. The Magee campus is a contained site in Derry, Northern Ireland, and ideal for creating a sense of community during our conference. Accommodation is in modern student flats with shared communal facilities. The Magee campus is approximately 75 minutes from Belfast International airport, 90 minutes from Belfast city airport and 8.5 miles from Derry city airport. Special deals on airport transfers are available for delegates and will be confirmed with joining instructions, further details will also be posted using the link 'travel/transfers' prior to the conference. For delegates wishing to book early flights then we advise booking for arrival in Belfast (City or International) by 1.00pm on 22nd June.


The Programme: From 2.00pm Wednesday 22nd June and Closing 3.00pm on Friday 24th June 

The programme will commence with some welcome workshops that 'begin the discussion' for new members; new researchers; and for course leaders. A key note speaker from Northern Ireland will formally open the conference before our dinner and our evening conference seminar. The remainder of the conference will include paper and seminar presentations; a Civic reception; visits and tours within Derry; and consultation on the development of Association activity and strategic objectives for 2016-17.


Please note the programme is subject to unforeseen changes and regular updates will be posted on this webpage.


Conference questions: Any questions about conference can be addressed to: info@tagpalycw.org