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Film marks the launch of the AHRC's 'Knowledge Exchange Hubs for the Creative Economy'

Date: 03/07/2012

The UK Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) has formally launched its new four year initiative, 'Knowledge Exchange Hubs for the Creative Economy'.

Representing an investment by the AHRC of £16m, the AHRC KE Hubs present a unique opportunity for Research Organisations to work in partnership with creative businesses and cultural organisations to strengthen and diversify their collaborative research activities, build new partnerships in the creative economy and increase the number of arts and humanities researchers engaged in research-based knowledge exchange.

The recent Knowledge Exchange Hubs launch, which took place in London, saw keynote speeches from Sir Adrian Smith, Director General, Knowledge and Innovation, Department of Business, Industry and Skills (BIS) and the AHRC's Chief Executive, Professor Rick Rylance.

Sir Adrian Smith says, These Hubs will create surprising, exciting and unthought-of lines between researchers, cultural institutions and firms'. He concluded that the AHRC KE Hubs were 'One of the most exciting projects he has in the portfolio at this time.

In the film, which was recorded at the launch event, we hear from the Hub Directors from the four lead institutions; University of Lancaster, University of Dundee; Queen Mary, University of London, and University of the West of England, who explain what is unique about their Hub and give examples who their Hub will be engaging with.

Each Hub will lead consortia that will include other universities, creative businesses, including Small and medium Enterprises (SMEs), arts and culture organisations and other agencies. And partners will include BBC, Microsoft, TATE Liverpool, SAGE Gateshead, all of the Scottish art colleges, the V&A and other industry partners including IBM and Bellemedia. Representatives from many of the partner organisations attended the launch and reveal on the film what they feel this new initiative will bring to their sector.

The film concludes with AHRC's Chief Executive, Professor Rick Rylance who says, The Hubs really are our flagship within the AHRC. It?s a big initiative and we?ve got a great deal of hope invested and a great deal of optimism that you [the Hubs] are going to deliver.

Watch the film via the AHRC YouTube channel.

Notes for editors

  • For further information, please contact: Emi Spinner on e.spinner@ahrc.ac.uk
  • The UK's Creative Economy - which includes the creative industries as well as museums, galleries, libraries, orchestras, theatres, etc. - is, relative to GDP, probably the largest creative sector in the world. As the major focus of AHRC's new knowledge exchange and impact strategy for 2011-2015, the Hubs will encourage significant interactions between research and the Creative Economy which will generate wider social, economic and cultural benefits.
  • University of Lancaster Hub: This Lancaster led hub called 'The Creative Exchange'- is in partnership with Newcastle University and the Royal college of Art. It will include collaboration with the BBC, Microsoft, TATE Liverpool, SAGE Gateshead, Opera North, NESTA, Lancaster City Council, the Storey Creative Industries Centre, FutureEverything and over 30 small and medium sized companies working in the sector, such as Stardotstar.

    Lead contact: Professor Rachel Cooper, Professor of Design Management at the Lancaster Institute for the Contemporary Arts, r.cooper@lancaster.ac.uk / Tel: (0) 1524 510871.
  • University of Dundee Hub: Dundee is leading a consortium, 'Design in Action', that includes all of the Scottish art colleges - Edinburgh College of Art, Glasgow School of Art and Gray's School of Art - the University of Abertay Dundee and the University of St Andrews. In addition the Dundee-led project is supported by creative businesses, including SMEs, arts and culture organisations and other agencies.

    Lead contact: Professor Georgina Follett OBE, Deputy Principal of the University of Dundee,g.l.p.follett@dundee.ac.uk / Tel: +44 (1382) 385202
  • Queen Mary, University of London Hub: The consortium 'Creativeworks London' is being led by QMUL and the other higher education institutions involved in the Hub are Birkbeck College; Central School of Speech and Drama; City University; the Courtauld Institute; Goldsmiths College; Kingston University; Guildhall School of Music and Drama; King's College London; Roehampton University; Royal Holloway; School of Oriental and African Studies; Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance; University of the Arts and the University of London's Centre for Creative Collaboration. Other partners include the British Library, the British Museum, the National Archives, the Victoria and Albert Museum and the BBC.

    Lead contact: Professor Evelyn Welch, Professor of Renaissance Studies and Vice-Principal for Research and International Affairs at QMUL, e.welch@qmul.ac.uk / Tel: 020 7882 5006
  • University of the West of England Hub: UWE is leading a consortium that includes the Universities of Bristol, Exeter, Bath and Cardiff and the Watershed Arts Trust. 'The Research and Enterprise in the Arts and Creative Technologies (REACT)' KE Hub will involve the consortium working closely with creative businesses, including SMEs, arts and culture organisations and other agencies.

    Lead contact: Professor Jonathan Dovey, Director of the Digital Cultures Research Centre at UWE Jonathan.Dovey@uwe.ac.uk Tel: +44 (0)117 32 84458
  • The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC). Each year the AHRC provides approximately £100 million from the UK Government to support research and postgraduate study in the arts and humanities, from languages and law, archaeology and English literature to design and creative and performing arts. In any one year, the AHRC makes hundreds of research awards ranging from individual fellowships to major collaborative projects as well as over 1,100 studentship awards. Awards are made after a rigorous peer review process, to ensure that only applications of the highest quality are funded. The quality and range of research supported by this investment of public funds not only provides social and cultural benefits but also contributes to the economic success of the UK.
  • AHRC Knowledge Exchange (KE) Hubs in the Creative Economy: AHRC KE Hubs present a unique opportunity for Research Organisations already working in strategic partnerships with creative businesses and cultural organisations to strengthen and diversify their collaborative research activities, build new partnerships in the creative economy and increase the number of arts and humanities researchers actively engaged in research-based knowledge exchange.
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