NCACE Evidence Hub

NCACE's Evidence Hub is concerned with addressing the need for more and better evidence on the scale, extent, nature, drivers, and broader impacts of Knowledge Exchange and collaborations between HE and the arts and culture sectors. The Evidence Hub compromises of three interrelated areas: the NCACE Blogs, a series of NCACE Evidence Café events and the NCACE Evidence Repository, which will host a number of academic and non-academic resources and is set to go live this autumn 2021.

The field of Knowledge Exchange (KE) is becoming more dynamic and ambitious and, arguably, not as concentrated on older models of technology transfer as it once was. However, more work needs to be done to establish a better evidence base and understanding of what is happening, how it is working, and why with regards to KE with the arts and culture sectors. Furthermore, this needs to be communicated more widely and as such, NCACE is committed to making a substantial contribution to systemising and expanding this knowledge base.

It is anticipated that the Evidence Hub will house the following types of materials; in-depth interviews drawn from those leading or co-designing KE initiatives between the arts and research; Syntheses of ongoing Literature Reviews of key papers, reports and other texts; Impacts and other case-studies drawn both from HE, the arts and elsewhere as appropriate, with a focus on the following areas: health, climate change, place-making and technology for social good.

The Evidence Repository will also host other relevant materials including academic papers, reports, blogs, toolkits, videos, vlogs, guides, surveys, and other resources as appropriate relating to the field. 

We launched the NCACE Evidence Café in March 2021 and these sessions are now held on a bi-monthly basis. Past and upcoming Café events can be found on our Activities page.

In early 2021, we developed a survey in partnership with Arts Professional to capture insights on collaborations with Higher Education Institutions from the perspective of professionals within the arts and cultural sector. A snapshot summary of these findings can be found here: Download NCACE's Arts Professional Survey - Snapshot Findings

We also hosted our first annual policy event in June 2021 in alignment with our placemaking theme. ‘Collaborations in Placemaking: Shining a Light on the Contribution of Higher Education and Cultural Partnerships’ highlighted the growing role of place-based partnerships, with representatives from Higher Education, the arts and cultural sector, local authorities and the private sector. Case studies and good practice guides were shared regarding the benefits and challenges of collaborations.

We are delighted to announce our first three research publications:

Blogs

The University’s Role in Culture-led Place-Shaping
Fireflight show at Sunderland cultural venue The Fire Station (Credit: Ray Gibson)

The cityscape of Sunderland is changing. It’s been variously captured on film as a warm and welcoming city by the sea (Sunderland Til I Die on Netflix) to post-industrial backwater (news channels like France 24 in the aftermath of Brexit). Of course, I could drive you to areas that would illustrate both perspectives. But the truth is more interesting.

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The art and performance of city strategy in a pandemic

In November 2020, we began working on an AHRC/UKRI funded, COVID-19 Rapid Response research project: ‘Social Distancing and Reimagining City Life: Performative strategies and practices for response and recovery in and beyond lockdown’. We are both academics from performance studies: an area of research that focuses on artistic and everyday performances.

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Part Two: Storytelling as a collaborative language for cultural exchange
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In my recent keynote speech for the NCACE launch event, I argued that collaborative research requires a common language to facilitate cultural exchange and understanding between all parties. In this blog post, I propose that storytelling could be that lingua franca and I consider the implications of this for the professional development of future researchers.

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The start of a step change in arts and cultural Knowledge Exchange

Knowledge exchange (KE) between universities and the arts and cultural sectors is recognised as an area of significant potential and the benefits of this activity could be felt by a wide range of people. While there are some great examples of good practice, more can be done in support of practitioners to fully develop the benefits and opportunities for all.

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