‘Learning from the experiences and voices of women doing leadership work in Homerton’s history’


Women of Influence

Professor Pam Burnard’s visual metaphor celebrates women pioneers of educational change and political thought in Homerton’s 250 years.

The image is of a woman navigating space and place, carrying with her a collection of artefacts for creating new ways of responding beyond the habitual. The image, for me, represents how the body inspires, constrains, engages and resonates with the material, cultural, and affective dimensions of change that make people aware of, and open to, change. The image is a metaphor for the role played by the body in education; how it can offer different ways of knowing, being, creating and responding.

My interest in this image is related to creativities and gender, and co-discovery, where teachers and students form networks that inter- and intra-act in the political and creative thought of the time. This being Homerton College’s 250th year we celebrate all of the Homertonians, especially women of influence in education and their leadership such as the past Principals of Homerton – women such as Kate Pretty CBE, Mary Allan, Dame Beryl Paston Brown, Alice Skillicorn and Alison Shrubsole, all of whom were women of influence, working in contested spaces, who created and adopted new ways of responding to and affecting the world beyond the habitual, and all of whom inspire my current research.

My research advances the still under-researched field of multiple and diverse creativities in the contexts of social enterprise (start-ups), STEAM, education sectors, creative/cultural industries and creative methodology in social sciences and the humanities. My most recent funded research projects include: (a) ‘MUSICEUM’: museums as spaces for early childhood music-making and inclusive community engagement; (b) ‘WISE’: Women in Social Enterprises: Participation and representation in ‘start ups’ as onto-epistemological sites; and (c) ‘WOMEN’S DIVERSE CREATIVITIES’: Practices across the Music, Audio and Soundart Industries.

Professor Pam Burnard joined Homerton in 2000, and is Chair of the Arts and Creativities Research Group with an annual seminar series and arts-based performative events featured as part of Homerton College community life. She is Professor of Arts, Creativities and Education in the Faculty of Education, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (RSA).


Image by David Litchfield