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Issue 9, 2 September 2021

Dear Reader,

A warm welcome to our September bulletin and we hope that you have had time for a relaxing break over the last month or so. We are delighted to be gearing up for Autumn with several timely events coming up over the next two months. In September we are delighted to announce our brand new KIN Support Sets

October brings our very first NCACE Ideas Pool with guest speakers including Professor Christopher Smith, Executive Chair AHRC, Hilary Carty OBE, Executive Director Clore Leadership Programme, Andrew Barnett OBE, Director Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Suzie Leighton, Co-Director NCACE & TCCE and Isla Wilson, Ruby Star Associates.

October 28th also sees the Autumn return of our Evidence Café with a focus on our new textual analysis of the recent KEF narratives and what it reveals about the state of Knowledge Exchange with the arts and culture sector. 

We shall also be hosting the first in a series of focus groups. The first session on October 7th is aimed at Arts and Culture Sector professionals who have previously worked with Higher Education and the theme is Collaborative Potentials in and beyond Covid. Do email if you like to take part.

NCACE Collaborations Champions Network

We are delighted to announce our new Collaborations Champions Network and look forward to working with this fantastic group of individuals over the coming year. The network includes: Dr Nicola Abraham (Royal Central School of Speech and Drama), Professor David Amigoni (Keele University), Dr Victoria Barker (University of Manchester), Professor Angela Bartram (University of Derby), Gavin Brookes (Lancaster University), Dr Susanne Burns (Susanne Burns Associates), Dr Glenda Cooper (City, University of London), Dr Mark Gray (Middlesex University London), David Hockham (Bathway Theatre, University of Greenwich), Sarah Naomi Lee (Plenty Productions CIC and Brighton and Hove Black History), Rupert Lorraine (University of Plymouth), Dr Fransiska Louwagie (University of Leicester), Kathleen Mitchell (Sunderland Culture and Sunderland City Council), Dr Aoife Monks (Queen Mary University of London), Irini Papadimitriou (Future Everything), Rachel Pattinson (Newcastle University), Mark Prest (Portraits of Recovery), Helen Sargeant (University of Wolverhampton), Rob Sherman (Bonfire Dog), Anita Shervington (BLASTFest), Paul Smith (Dance Consortia North West), John Steel (University of Derby), Dr Michael Tymkiw (University of Essex) and Dr Kerry Wilson (Liverpool John Moores University).

NCACE and Arts Professional

In March this year we ran a survey with Arts Professional magazine entitled Collaborating with Higher Education. You can read a snapshot of the findings and our fuller report will be published next month. 

We have also recently established a new editorial partnership with Arts Professional. Our first articles include: A step change in cultural partnerships with Higher Education and Arts and academic collaborations in Placemaking.

NCACE is a four year initiative funded by Research England and led by TCCE with regional hub partners including: Bath Spa University, Birmingham City University, Manchester Metropolitan University and Northumbria University

We thank you for your readership and look forward to working with you.

Evelyn Wilson (Co-Director, NCACE) and Noshin Sultan (Project and Partnerships Manager, NCACE)

Knowledge Impacts Network: Launch of KIN Support Sets
Wednesday 22 September, 14:00 - online

Discussions and feedback from our June KIN co-design meeting highlighted the need for more opportunities and platforms for creative discussion and problem solving between the higher education and arts and cultural sector, as well as the importance of peer to peer networking for professional development, personal growth and resilience.

In response to these highlighted needs, we are delighted to offer KIN Support Sets, small cross sector groups that will provide peer to peer support and problem solving using coaching and Action Learning techniques. Groups will be curated by NCACE to include a range of geographical, sectoral and professional experience. Sets will be provided with 3 online facilitated sessions throughout 2021/22, thereafter it is envisaged that they will become self-supporting.

In this event, we will be offering people a chance to participate in a “taster” session, before deciding whether or not they would like to join a facilitated set. We are delighted to be working with the Guildhall Coaching Associates from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama to provide facilitation for the KIN Support Sets.

NCACE Ideas Pool 1: Co-Creating a New and Different Future for Arts/Higher Education Collaboration
Wednesday 13 October, 13:00 - online

This interactive and action orientated Ideas Pool will bring together artists, arts and cultural organisations, researchers and knowledge exchange professionals to imagine new and different futures for knowledge exchange and collaboration. Through a series of energetic, creative and (dare we say it) entertaining workshops and blue skies provocations, we will ask all participants to engage proactively in some creative and inventive problem solving.

NCACE’s recent research and activity has underlined that there is a lack of opportunity for creative thinking, dialogue and experimentation to explore new and future possibilities of collaboration. Many current opportunities for knowledge sharing and exchange focus on time limited projects in response to specific funding calls or policy agendas. Partnerships tend to only last as long as a specific project, and are not as resilient, productive or impactful for collaborators or communities as they could be. We also know that there are pervasive barriers to dynamic and sustainable partnerships, particularly when engaging in collaboration between universities and small arts and cultural organisations.

NCACE will be offering a modest amount of funding to support the development of ideas arising from this event that have the potential to provide a mutually beneficial step change in the field of arts / HE collaboration and knowledge sharing. Further details will be shared at the conclusion of the Ideas Pool.

NCACE Evidence Café 4
NCACE Primary Research on HEIs’ engagement with the arts and culture sector: evidence from KEF narratives

Thursday 28 October, 14:00 - online

NCACE's Evidence Café is conceived as an online community of practice to support evidence sharing and story telling about cultural knowledge exchange (KE). It is a space for presentations, evidence and information sharing about knowledge exchange, collaborations and partnerships between academia and the arts and cultural sectors. For our fourth session, we are highlighting an emerging piece of research from NCACE.

Dr. Federica Rossi (Birkbeck, University of London) and Dr. Valentina Rizzoli (University of Rome) will share their emerging research on the Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) 2021 submissions. This analysis involved an automated text analysis of the 117 KEF narratives, with the purpose to identify significant topics relating to engagement with the arts and culture sector. The session will also cover the findings drawn from the qualitative analysis of twenty KEF narratives that most frequently mentioned arts and culture-related knowledge exchange, providing further information on the structures, practices and processes developed by HEIs in order to engage with the arts and culture sector. This Café will complement an in-depth report which will be published later this Autumn. 

The Evidence Café is co-hosted and developed by Evelyn Wilson and Emily Hopkins. Bring your tea, your notebook and as many ideas as you want.

You may also be interested in: 

CreAtIve Comm 2021
Monday 13 September, 13:00 - online

Hosted by CebAI Director Prof. Neil Maiden the on-line conference fields an eclectic line up of speakers discussions, presentations and case studies programmed to appeal to a broad range of people who are interested and working in technology, creativity and knowledge exchange. Case studies and panel discussions will cover business start ups and technology, ethics, culture and human-computer interaction, the 4.0 future, diffusion of products, monetising creativity and knowledge exchange activities.

This month's blogs are by our new Collaborations Champions Dr Nicola Abraham (Senior Lecturer, Applied Theatre Practices at Royal Central School of Speech and Drama) Findings Ways to Collaborate: In the Eye of the Storm and Dr Victoria Barker (Research Associate - Creative Economy at The University of Manchester) Joining the knowledge exchange conversation.

Findings Ways to Collaborate: In the Eye of the Storm
Collaboration can take many forms. It may offer opportunities for knowledge exchange, partnerships, and innovation through sharing ideas and fusing fields of thought to provide new ways of understanding how ideas and innovations can be created and progressed. The scale of collaborations vary too, and may involve multiple international organisations, local NGOs or a small group of practitioners and specialists from different fields working together to navigate the complexities of unprecedented situations. Though the scale of collaborations vary greatly, the impact even small scale projects can achieve warrants discussion. This blog will explore a vignette of a collaboration between the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama and Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust focussing on one moment within a new project that enabled a grieving family to communicate, feel a sense of hope and support in the midst of the last wave of COVID-19. 

Joining the knowledge exchange conversation

NCACE has just launched its new Collaborations Champions Network to bring together people with experience, understanding and an appetite for increased collaboration between higher education and the arts and cultural sectors. As a long-term advocate who has previously discussed place-making and collaboration at an NCACE Evidence Café I was interested to find out more. The network aims to support NCACE’s goals to evidence and showcase the social, cultural, environmental impacts of these collaboration activities, as well as the economic.

We are keen to hear about your collaborative projects or related works and invite you to contribute to our blog. You can read our current blog posts on our website and can access the NCACE Blog Guidelines here. For further information contact Noshin Sultan on
Given the nature of our work, NCACE is likely to be of interest and relevance to those within Higher Education (HE) research and knowledge exchange, as well as those working in the arts and cultural sector. We are also very happy to hear from other interested individuals and organisations who may be interested in our work. There is more information on how to get involved on our website

In the meantime you can follow us on Twitter @CultureImpacts and LinkedIn for the latest NCACE news and announcements. You can also listen to recordings of past NCACE events via our SoundCloud channel. For general enquiries, get in touch with Noshin Sultan

Image: © Bill Leslie, Leap then Look: An NCACE micro-commission 2020.

The National Centre for Academic and Cultural Exchange is led by TCCE and funded by Research England
TCCE & Research England Logos. Copyright NCACE © 2021, All rights reserved.

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