Neil Mendoza to Co-Chair Expert Advisory Panel for DCMS and UKRI Arts and Humanities Research Council Joint Research Project

  • Oriel Provost Neil Mendoza standing in his study
8 July, 2020

In his role as Commissioner for Cultural Recovery and Renewal, it has been announced that Oriel’s Provost Neil Mendoza will co-chair an Expert Advisory Panel for the DCMS and UKRI Arts and Humanities Research Council Joint Research Project. 

The Joint Research Project seeks to explore and demonstrate the role of innovation, collaboration and participation in shaping cultural experiences during the current pandemic, and to provide an evidence base to inform cultural recovery, renewal and future growth.

Specifically, the Joint Research Project will:

  • Provide new data and real-time intelligence on the differential impact of Covid-19 across the UK’s arts, cultural and creative sectors, positive and negative – the opportunities as well as the disruption and threats;
  • Advise on measures that may be required to restore public confidence in face-to-face cultural participation and to return to venues;
  • Explore the impact of Covid-19 on new technology-enabled distribution platforms and online cultural participation / consumption, and on user preferences across a range of audience groups;
  • Make recommendations that will allow the sector to maximise the potential of new digital and immersive technologies in engaging and diversifying audiences;
  • Provide insights into how the cultural sector may need to innovate through both their content and business models to recover, build resilience against future shocks, and emerge from the period of lockdown in a different form.

Alongside co-chair Professor Andrew Thompson, Executive Chair of the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), Neil will bring together leaders from across the arts, cultural, creative and HEI sectors to guide, review and report on the subsequent findings to provide an evidence base that informs cultural recovery, renewal and future growth, and make recommendations for future actions.

This project is part of the Boundless Creativity campaign created by the AHRC in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The project aims to explore and demonstrate the role of innovation, collaboration and participation in shaping cultural experiences in the current pandemic, and provide an evidence base for future growth.

The Joint Research Review Expert Advisory Panel will run from July 2020 to July 2021.

Of the project, Neil says: “Our culture holds us together. From heritage sites to immersive theatre, culture in all its forms is a vital part of people’s lives up and down the country. As well as creating some exceptional new and innovative experiences, Boundless Creativity presents a unique opportunity to explore the impact of the pandemic on culture and creativity, and how digital innovation can support the sector’s ultimate recovery and renewal.”

The launch of the Joint Research Project follows the announcement earlier this week of a £1.57 billion support package to support and protect Britain’s cultural, arts and heritage institutions, which Neil led on in his role as Commissioner for Cultural Recovery and Renewal.