My research interests revolve around the interface between arts, culture and education, more recently also involving the sciences.
The Imagineerium Initiative (2017-2020) is a three-year Paul Hamlyn Funded arts-based learning project which engages primary school aged children as 'Young Imagineers' designing, alongside engineers and artists for a real commission. Our research is investigating the value of the project as an arts-based educational model in developing learner capabilities and dispositions, within and beyond the (STEAM) subjects it draws on. I recently worked on a Research Commission into STEAM education, funded by the British Educational Research Association. 'Reviewing the potential and challenges of developing STEAM education through creative pedagogies for 21st learning: how can school curricula be broadened towards a more responsive, dynamic, and inclusive form of education?' The report, resources and process of the commission can be found here.
I am completing a doctorate in Sociology investigating the significance of the practice of art-making as an educational model, with a particular focus upon the role of the body, affective and relational dimensions in learning. The thesis centres upon a case study of a pilot Imagineerium project.
My MPhil research into the role of artists in teacher education marked a longstanding interest in developing young people through creative and cultural experiences. It also informed my work as director of a creative learning programme (2004-2011) and the development of models for the ways in which professional artists engage with education as well as the facilitation of partnership working between the arts, schools, community and industry. I have conducted studies for several cultural organisations including The Barbican, The Arts Council, The Film Council, Imagineer Productions, Open Theatre and Highly Sprung Performance Company as well as Solihull and Warwickshire Local Authorities, investigating partnership practice, cultural education, creativity and learning.
Further information on my work can be found here