Cultural groups seek solutions to data-driven dilemmas

Challenges set by five of Edinburgh’s leading cultural organisations have been selected as part of multi-million pound initiative to transform the city’s creative industries through data.

The Edinburgh International Festival, Jupiter Artland, Edinburgh Science, Historic Environment Scotland (HES) and the John Byrne Award are seeking creative entrepreneurs to work with them to develop solutions to issues affecting their organisations.

The Creative Informatics Challenge Projects makes funding of up to £20,000 available to individuals and small and medium-sized enterprises working in and around Edinburgh to respond to the challenges posed.

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Applications are open and will close on 24 February.

Respondents will retain part or all of the intellectual property for their work, enabling them to commercialise products or services developed.

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Creative Informatics

The Challenge Projects are part of Creative Informatics, a £7.6 million research and development programme led by the University of Edinburgh and delivered in partnership with Edinburgh Napier University, Code Base and Creative Edinburgh.

The projects will use data contained in art collections, architectural drawings and historical archives to create ground-breaking products and improve audience experiences.

We had a great response to our second call for Creative Informatics Challenge Holders and the five challenges selected promise to be exciting projects for all involved. It’s fantastic to see organisations from across the creative industries coming forward with interesting questions that seek to unlock the potential of the varied data sets they hold. I am sure that potential challenge respondents will propose novel solutions to solving these problems, developing innovative new experiences, products and services along the way.

Professor Chris SpeedDirector of Creative Informatics

Challenge Projects

The Edinburgh International Festival’s challenge is to create virtual working spaces for venues in the city to enable the Festival to provide the planning resources that world class productions expect.

Jupiter Artland is looking to develop an interactive tool to enhance visitors’ experience, understanding and engagement with its art collection.

Edinburgh Science, which delivers the Edinburgh Science Festival, wants to create a fun, interactive experience that encourages audiences to make a donation when attending events.

HES is the lead public body which investigates, cares for and promotes Scotland’s historic environment. It would like to develop a product that enables visitors to engage with historic sites using a range of content including historical, reconstructed or inaccessible views.

The John Byrne Award, an online exhibition and competition exploring personal and societal values, would like to find a way for users to take bespoke, dynamic journeys through the gallery of their award entrants. It also wants to maximise opportunities for their audience to explore their own values and learn more about the values of others.

We’re delighted to be collaborating with Creative Informatics on this exciting Challenge project. The historic environment offers a vast resource of inspiration, and we want to open this up to Scotland’s creative industries to find new ways of telling the story of our history and heritage. Projects such as this show just how the historic environment can support a creative, vibrant and innovative Scotland, and we’re very much looking forward to seeing the submissions.

Alison TurnbullDirector of Development & Partnership at Historic Environment Scotland (HES)

More opportunities

Further open calls for Challenge Projects will take place twice a year in April and October over the next three years, with up to five challenges selected in each round.

Creative Informatics is one of nine programmes across the UK that make up the Creative Industries Clusters Programme.

It is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council as part of the UK Government’s Industrial strategy.

Creative Informatics is part of the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal initiative and is also supported by the Scottish Funding Council.

Related links

Creative Informatics

Creative Industries Cluster Programme