Every semester POROI hosts two rhetoric seminars that workshops the projects-in-progress of researchers, activists, artists, film-makers and other culture workers, including UI and visiting scholars. Each seminar takes place with an audience from diverse backgrounds that come to the seminar having engaged the work-in-progress.
Participants workshop with stakes, venue, audience, intended impacts, and the seminarian's wishes and hopes in mind. The virtue of the format becomes apparent as disciplines and intellectual traditions cross paths with personal proclivities, diverse media, reading habits, patterns of knowledge and modes of expression. The group provides insightful, constructive criticism concerning what it sees as a work’s strengths and weaknesses, and in turn provide the speaker with ideas for revision and eventual dissemination. Many presenters publish revised versions of their work in scholarly books and journals; seminarians have also screened workshopped films at festivals, implemented workshopped instruments to conduct nonprofit research, circulated workshopped book proposals to academic presses, and filed workshopped chapters as dissertations.