Mar 21, 2018
In this podcast, Rosie Tait talks to Duika about her conscious community building with the Station Masters Garden. Duika Burges Watson is a Lecturer at the University of Newcastle Upon Tyne. She may well blow apart all your preconceptions about academics. This is a very practical woman who loves getting her hands dirty. By day she works on research focused on the altered eating habits of individuals who have survived head and neck cancer. In her downtime, amongst many other things, she helped give birth to a community garden and yoga studio on her doorstep.
Duika explains how she allowed it to come to life and why it has now taken on a life of its own. The garden emerged as an offshoot to a spot of “guerrilla gardening” Duika undertook at a derelict spot of land next to a railway line. She subsequently managed to secure funding to create both a community garden and a yoga studio in the station, charmingly called the Yoga Station.
As an Aussie based in the North East of England Duika talks about the benefit of being an outsider when facilitating the emergence of a conscious community.She also talks about what she has learned from the experience and why none of us mere mortals should be afraid of grasping the nettle (Yes, that was deliberate).
Dr Duika Burges Watson is Lecturer in the Evaluation of Policy Interventions within FUSE, the Centre for Translational Research in Public Health - a UKCRC Public Health Research Centre of Excellence. She is most interested in food – from source to senses – and how critical geographic and qualitative methodologies can help reveal different ways of thinking about how we eat. Current research focuses on multi-modal flavor perception, altered eating and the implications of new understandings in relation to health and well-being. Previous research has included work with survivors of head and neck cancer explored the potential of progressive cuisine to enhance the quality of life; food growing and foraging for 'free'; visceral geographies, urban agriculture and ultra-processed foods, and developments in UK food policy. She leads masters modules on policy analysis (in particular discourse analytic approaches) and the dynamics of evidence in Global Public Policy and Health focusing on contemporary food policy. She is also the patient and public engagement lead for Fuse - the Centre for Translational Research in Public Health. Connect with Duika on her FB page and get more info on Duika’s website.