About POROI

The Project on Rhetoric of Inquiry (POROI) is an interdisciplinary program housed at he Obermann Center at the University of Iowa.  Its mission is to explore how scholarship and professional discourses are conducted through argument, how paradigms of knowledge are sensitive to social-political contexts, and how the presentation of scholarly and professional findings involves the recognition and negotiation of audiences.

Since its founding in 1980, POROI has provided resources for strengthening academic inquiry and scholarly writing in the arts, humanities, sciences, and professions.  It is especially interested in communicative opportunities and problems that arise at the intersections between disciplines as well as between academia and the public sphere.  In these respects, POROI applies the art of rhetoric to the conduct of inquiry. Its concerns range from the invention and construction of telling arguments to a marked interest in how discourse is interpreted, received, and disseminated in both technical and public spheres of argumentation.  POROI is a constituent program in the Iowa’s Writing University Initiative.