series event

​Co-producing Care knowledges


​This is a coproduced session on co-producing Care knowledges. The authors have recently worked together on the ‘Documenting Paid Homecare’ project, which explored the everyday/everynight experiences of homecare workers as they provide paid care, and we are now collaborating on the Homecare Case study, which is part of a larger Care Aesthetics Research Exploration (CARE) project* with colleagues at the University of Manchester.

The session will focus on Caroline (a paid homecare worker working in the community sector), Dominique (a paid homecare worker providing live-in care) and Kerry (an academic interested in sensory ways of knowing care) reflecting on the strengths and challenges of what Kerry names ‘a decolonising feminist imaginary’ approach, when researching paid homecare work. Our questions include: who and what is being included and excluded when developing policy in the Adult Social Care sector? How might embodied ways of knowing care be researched in participatory ways? And why might knowledges developed by carers make a difference when providing care? These questions will be explored in a very concrete way through discussing our practices on the ‘Documenting Paid Homecare’ project and the plans for the Care Aesthetics project. 

*The CARE project is a cross disciplinary and cross institutional project and includes paid homecare workers, carers working in NHS dementia wards, an NHS Trust senior manager, practicing performance artists and academics from Dementia Nursing, Theatre Studies and Workplace Learning.  

Attendees are encouraged to review the project’s website prior to the seminar: Care aesthetics research project - Creative Manchester - The University of Manchester


Dominique Davies 

Dominique Davies has worked for 25 years in Adult Social Care. The first 15 years she worked as a live-in care worker in the context of an economic migrant from Zimbabwe. In 2016 Dominique settled in the UK permanently and has been working as part of a care team who support a woman with severe physical disability needing 24hr care. In 2020 she completed an undergraduate degree in Psychosocial Studies at Birkbeck. Dominique has been involved in participatory research at Oxford Brookes examining the potential risks and drivers of labour exploitation in live-in care. She has also worked as a researcher at Birkbeck with Kerry Harman and Caroline Firmer on the Documenting Paid Homecare work' project, as well as the current 'Care Aesthetics' project. 

Caroline Firmin 

Caroline Firmin has been working for over 33 years in adult social care as a paid homecare worker in the community. She has been active in advocating better working conditions for homecare workers and has worked with Unison on many issues regarding homecare. She was also the representative for greater London on a national level forum for homecare workers. This widespread experience enables her to continue promoting better terms and conditions for carers. 

Dr Kerry Harman 

Kerry Harman is the Director of the Research Centre for Social Change and Transformation in Higher Education at Birkbeck, University of London. She also leads the MSc in Education, Power and Social Change in the department of Psychosocial Studies. Kerry is a founding member of the Decolonising the Academy Collective (Birkbeck) and the Feminist Imaginary Research Network (FIRN), an international network of activist feminist artists, curators and educators in feminist galleries and libraries, and feminist adult educators. Kerry is interested in practices of knowledge production that attend to/engage with/include the knowledges of marginalised groups. 


Dr Kate Maguire-Rosier

Kate is Research Associate on the CARE project at the University of Manchester. She is a dancer, academic and arts administrator. Her latest work dialoguing dance and disability with theatre and dementia co-authored with Dr Janet Gibson appeared in Performance Research’s Special Issue On Care. She also reviews dance, theatre and circus for The Conversation (Australia) and on her blog, mrkatesgoestothetheatre.


Réka Polonyi

Réka is Research Associate on the CARE project at the University of Manchester. She is a theatre maker and has worked specifically to promote the rights of immigrants and asylum seekers through theatre. She is also a trained clown and has worked in sites of armed conflict and political violence. Réka is particularly interested in the dialogue between research and activist practices. You can read more about her work at



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