Andrea Bullivant, along with Karen Wynne, has taken on additional responsibilities as the new Co-Director of Liverpool World Centre. This change was part of larger restructuring and rethinking taking place at LWC as it prepares for new challenges. Along with Co-Directorship of LWC, Andrea is also Director of TEESNet and, through LWC’s collaborative leadership model, will continue to work on project delivery in the Higher Education sector. Several months ago, we sat down with Andrea to discuss her Higher Education work and how it has evolved through her time at this organisation. We are republishing the interview (with minor updates) in the light of these changes.
Andrea has been part of LWC since 2010. Recounting her first role, Andrea tells us that it was focused on working directly with Liverpool Hope University on a project that was funded by the (then) Department for International Development. The project’s goal was to embed global citizenship across all of Liverpool Hope’s Education courses. It is fascinating to hear that not only was the project rolled out to other local universities, but the work continues today through the teacher education course Andrea leads called Wider Perspectives in Education. What’s more, this project sowed the seeds for LWC becoming the lead facilitator on TEESNet. Below you can read Andrea’s answers to some more of our questions.
Q: What is it like working with LWC day-to-day?
Andrea: A typical day depends on what time of the year it is. I lead a course in teacher education at Liverpool Hope University, so if that is back on the timetable, I might be hopping on a bus to deliver teaching and meet with colleagues there. Occasionally, I will travel to other parts of the UK to visit projects I’m evaluating. In the recent past, I might have even been travelling elsewhere in Europe for one of our EU projects, but sadly this has become rarer.
However, the majority of my time is spent at LWC where a typical day can range between following up on emails, meetings to discuss project ideas, preparing material for delivery and writing up reports. Whilst local meetings are now face to face, I still have a lot of zoom meetings, which might include facilitating a Steering Group meeting for TEESNet or discussing a research project with a colleague in Italy. In between these meetings, I will be catching up with notes and actions from previous meetings, for example, developing a tool to measure changes in young people’s ‘nature-connectedness’. I’ll also be sharing dilemmas and problem-solving with colleagues, as we continually reflect on our work and explore creative ways to draw in funding!
Q: What’s your current top-favourite project and why?
Andrea: My top favourite piece of work right now is an evaluation I’m carrying out of a project designed to promote young people’s well-being and agency through closer connection with the outdoors and nature. It’s really interesting to explore research on the impact of more engagement with nature and outdoor spaces and develop tools to ‘measure’ changes in outlooks and skills specifically for young people involved in the project.
Q: One connection you’ve recently made through LWC that you want to talk about.
Andrea: Choosing any one connection is hard! The nature of LWCs work means that all the time we are encountering people with a passion to make a difference in the world and with creative ideas. But to offer one recent example, I’ve mentioned that I’m involved in teacher education at Liverpool Hope University and one of my students also turned out to also be a local Councillor. We connected through mutual interest in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – I use them in the teacher education course and she brought them to the attention of council colleagues. Recently the same (now ex) student came to talk to a new cohort of students and inspired them by sharing how the SDGs were relevant locally.