The Creative Exchange was a knowledge exchange hub, exploring digital and the creative economy where anyone can access, explore and create content anywhere and at any time.


Between 2012 and 2016 CX created innovative partnerships between universities, businesses and communities, crossing public and private sectors.


These partnerships explored creative applications of digital media and technology on social and cultural challenges faced by organisations and communities across the UK.


CX invested in over 90 projects, connecting over 100 organisations, 150 university academics and producing a cohort of 21 PhDs skilled in bridging academia and industry.


102 organisations, connected to projects funded by CX


CX invested in over 90 projects that connected public and private sector organistions with Arts & Humanities academics.
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The CX PhD Cohort

21 students working at the boundaries between academia and the creative industries.

CX Team

CX brought togther team members from Lancaster University, Newcastle University and the Royal College of Art.

Outputs & Publications
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Outcomes from CX
New Thinking on Digital Public Spaces In the digital age, what constitutes public space? CX explored how archives of cultural content could be unlocked for everyone, and the opportunities for innovation in making social, civic, health and co- working data available in public ways. CX started a profound, ongoing debate about the future of Digital Public Space in the UK, engaging expert voices from the BBC, British Library, Wellcome Trust, Wikipedia and Ofcom. A new kind of PhD CX produced a cohort of 21 PhD students with the skills to bridge theoretical inquiry and the real-world application of knowledge. Acting like mini research and development departments, these PhDs worked with universities and commercial businesses as facilitators and innovators. New forms of connection between industry and academia CX piloted agile ways of enabling Arts and Humanities academics to connect and create with creative sector businesses. Rather than a one-way transfer of knowledge from a university to industry, CX developed flexible methods and mechanisms for cross-sector collaboration and innovation. New Product and Service Opportunities CX projects led to new apps, games, websites, software technologies avnd service models designed to create new opportunities for creative businesses, and bring benefits to communities. Four themes emerged around novel applications of digital technology: Heritage, place & tourism re-envisioning heritage and tourism offers. Citizen participation encouraging more open democratic processes in local communities. Public service redesign improving local services, from transport to health. Entrepreneurship working with hard-to-reach micro-businesses. Industry Theory Academia Practice Facilitation Collaborative Tools & Methods CX PhDs Creative Sector Businesses Arts & Humanities Academics Practical Application Theoretical Inquiry
Events in CX

2012 - 2016

  • Launchpad

    May 2012, MOSI Manchester

    Bringing together over 300 people from the commercial and academic world, the CX launchpad event layed out the scope of the project, and helped to steer the direction taken by CX in the first year of work.

  • CX Labs & Lounge

    2012 - 2014, Manchester, Newcastle, Liverpool & London

    These events were designed to bring together academics, businesses, CX PhD researchers, other experts, and community groups around the identified themes. The labs results in a total 42 projects in the first two years of CX.

    Some of our labs: 1 2 3
  • TKE Conference

    September 2013, Lancaster University

    A new form of interactive conference, exploring and propagating new mutually beneficial exchanges between academia and the creative industries.


    Conference photostream
  • DDN Exhibition

    June 2016, FACT Liverpool

    A summative exhibition presenting work across CX to explore how we are shaping digital technologies and how digital technologies are shaping us.