Farewell 2013

Monday

It might still only be mid December, but this week is my last working until the new year, hence I’m already beginning to think about what I can achieve realistically before downing tools on Friday.  I am hoping I can get through the thick sheaf of reports and House of Commons inquiries by then, which will be a bit of a slog.  Not so much because they’re hard to read, as they’re all pretty engaging.  They just promise to be really information rich so I can’t dash through them.

Weather’s pretty grim today, which never helps with the energy levels – but on I shall slog until Friday!

Tuesday

A lovely sunny day, which has perked me up no end.  More slogging on with the Open Access reading – and an nagging question about hybrid journals and subscriptions.  Have any of those actually reduced their subscription costs as a result of hybrid APC payments?  I’ve not heard of any, and a question to twitter yielded el-zilcho in terms of responses.

Also followed up on a Business School invite to join in with some of their research groups.  One of them seems to overlap to a degree with my ethnography and critical management interests, so I’ve dropped them a line to see what it entails and if there’s anyway I can get involved.  My supervisor was skeptical of it being too much use, but agreed with me that it was worth a try.

Wednesday

After the calm – today the storm.  The day was spent reading a UNESCO Report on Open Access Policy Development; which was actually far more interesting than it sounds.  I also spent some time updating my timeline notes, around which a big chunk of my chapter on OA in the UK is going to be structured.  Feeling more positive about things today, in part due to going on a ten minute rant (without, for once, using the term neoliberal) about the shape of research in higher education today; in response to a job interview Mrs Llama has got coming up early in the new year.  Typical academic that I am, I ended up giving her about 700% more information than she needed to answer a simple question.  Whoops.

The other highlight today was the Student Rep online meeting, which as I suspected ended up being mostly me and one or two others, rather than all the reps.  We’ve a proposal to go to the University’s research degrees committee early next year.  After waiting a few minutes I ran up a hasty draft paper for the rest of the reps to look at.  Seemed to go down quite well so submitted that to the Committee secretary, and shared it with the rest of my AAH colleagues to see if they’ve got any comments.

Thursday

Started the day with the good news that my paper to ARLG Conference in June next year has been accepted.  Excellent, now to just wait and hear from OER14 now.  Would love to find some Europe or North American conferences to go to/present at; but lacking funds as I do for conference fees and the like, unless I find one that covers speakers costs it’s not likely to happen any time soon.    It does mean though that I need to crack on with some serious analysis in Jan, which is looking like an incredibly busy start to the new year now, what with teaching, chapter writing and conference planning as well.  Oh yeah, and committee meeting attending.

Had a chat with a friend who’s chair of one of the organisations I used to run, who was trying to persuade me to submit a paper for their conference.  Need to check there’s no clash, and not to mention if I can shape what I’m doing to fit the conference agenda.  Sure I can, but I’ll figure that out in the new year.

The rest of the day was spent tackling the BIS House of Commons inquiry into open access – so reading through the report, and the oral evidence.  Tomorrow I tackle the written evidence.  Interesting read as I know one or two of the folks involved personally, so I’m able to add their voices in my head when reading their evidence.  A very interesting read, and not at all what I expected – one or two eye-popping moments as a result.

Friday

Read the rest of the report, despite having a skull cracking headache.  Do hope I’m not coming down with a cold as I could really do with avoiding that over the Xmas break period.  Poor Mrs Llama kept getting me reading out bits of the BIS inquiry for her amusement, education and, well, mostly to clarify that I understood what was being said.  A lot of what’s in here will be more useful to me in the coming months, rather than right now, but it has started more than a few wheels turning in my head.  It was an appropriate place to call it quits for the year, and I’ll review my notes from the last month as my start of 2014.

Also heard (via twitter) that my other conference paper has been accepted.  Huzzah.  Guess that means I need to make plans to be in Newcastle in late April then.  As well as all this, had a nice email from the Business School, and it looks like there will be a few seminars and workshop or two that I can gate crash that will be right up my street.  So a positive result there as well.  Everything’s coming up Llama it seems…just hope I can be equal to all these demands on my time 🙂

And finally, to end the year, a spot of fun…let’s have a good old-fashioned Christmas sing-song.  Take it away Jean-Luc…

Saturday

Shssssh, don’t tell Mrs Llama…I checked my university email this morning

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