Lightning Talks, Manifesto building, and a Student Dinner: Highlights from SSI

By Evan Berg

At the end of May, I attended the 1st annual SpokenWeb Sound Institute. The Sound Institute was the first time the entire SpokenWeb team was together in the same room. The institute kicked off with 3 rounds of “Lightning Talks”. The Lightning Talks were a highlight for me because they were 5-minute presentations by other student research assistants that concisely conveyed their research interests and/or role in the project. I presented two lightning talks, the first, focused on my work co-creating the SpokenWeb logo with Caitlin Voth, and the second offered a look at another creative project engaging with archival material from the SoundBox Collection. Hearing what other Research Assistants were doing on the project helped me see how important student experience was to the SpokenWeb. I already knew that it was a focus within The AMP Lab, but the various lightning talks highlighted that student experience was a valued priority for all the SpokenWeb partners.


Evan Berg Presenting “Visual Language: A SpokenWeb Design Story” at the SpokenWeb Sound Institute. Photo by Karis Shearer

Another highlight for me was the final manifesto building session. We broke into groups and each person came up with a short line that they felt expresses a value of the SpokenWeb project. Some of the lines were more literal, while others were more abstract. This session allowed everyone’s voices to be heard and have their input on the future of SpokenWeb. We recorded each manifesto line which was exciting knowing we were adding our own voices a new piece of the SpokenWeb archive.

Evan Berg adding to the SpokenWeb manifesto

Given the emphasis on student experience within SpokenWeb, the organizers of SSI planned a student dinner at Nuba in Gastown to finish off the institute. This was a great opportunity to connect with the other students on the project and unwind from a busy couple of days. After dinner, a group of us walked down to Crab beach and watched the sunset. A perfect way to end the 2019 SpokenWeb Sound Institute.


Sunset at Crab beach Photo by Evan Berg

Evan Berg holds a BFA in Visual Arts and is the recipient of the UBC Medal in Fine Arts; he is also a UBCO SpokenWeb Research Assistant)