Our aim is to engage in purposeful interdisciplinary research with people across their life span in creative ways, that are participatory, ethical and of demonstrable value. 

Our mission is to generate, process and actively disseminate research evidence.

We aspire to establish multi-layered, national and international partnerships that make use of good practice in the arts to improve the lives of people, their communities and their wider environment.

The centre has developed over the last decade from an active research group that have engaged in interdisciplinary research activities in the form of research projects, publications, events and masterclasses. 

Research methodologies celebrate creative and arts-based methods next to verbal accounts of lived experiences and standardised methods of measuring change, allowing for diverse types of evidence to emerge that speak about different aspects of the work to different audiences.

The centre draws expertise from across faculties, championing interdisciplinary research.  It has three main strands: (i) research on performance, (ii) community/workplace projects and (iii) clinical research

Research on Performance

Bringing together psychological, health and educational research with research in performance and the arts. It focuses on the development of performative material that challenges perceptions around mental health, and encourages aspects of wellbeing for artists and audiences. It also supports dissemination of existing research findings from different disciplines in artistic forms.  This strand focuses on partnerships with cultural organisations and independent practitioners.

Community and Workplace Projects

Working with key partners on participatory arts that will be tailored to different groups, their communities and workplaces.  Collaborations with voluntary organisations, mainstream and special needs schools, private organisations and businesses will develop and make direct use of good practice in arts-based interventions, aiming to support people’s wellbeing including both service users as well as the organisation’s workforce.

Clinical Research

Researching the use of the arts in health contexts and environments with people who are vulnerable either because of mental or physical ill health, their age, disability, gender, socioeconomic disadvantage and/or inequality.  Collaborations will be fostered with partners with clinical expertise such as psychotherapists, arts psychotherapists, psychologists, nurses and medics as well as other health professionals.  The centre has strong partnerships with a number of NHS trusts.