What’s New

The Metaverse: A unique opportunity for innovation and growth  or a dangerous ‘parallel reality’?

Watch the 2022 European Parliamentary Research Service Online Policy Roundtable

Verity McIntosh, Senior Lecturer and expert in virtual reality at UWE gave contributions to the 2022 EU Parliament policy roundtable.


The EPRS policy roundtable focused on one of the most discussed technology concepts nowadays: the metaverse.


A panel of EU representatives, academia and industry discussed the main features, challenges, opportunities and risks of the metaverse, with the aim to identify fields that deserve scrutiny from EU lawmakers.


Collaborate Conference

1st July 2022, Watershed

Collaborate conference will take a deep dive into the art of collaboration and team dynamics to unpick tricky design problems, forge new networks and embrace uncertainty.


Talk by Verity McIntosh: It’s A Kind of Magic

There has been a lot of chat lately about the ‘metaverse’ and it’s immersive step-parents, Virtual and Augmented Reality.


The ability to build whole new worlds, to become the central character in a story, and to narrow the gap between our digital and physical selves can feel extraordinary. Magical even. It can also be a frustrating, confusing and expensive space to find yourself in when you try to tool up and team up to make something happen.


Verity will share her experience of what teams actually need to make great work in this new magical realm. She will talk about the collaboration needed to effectively cross the streams between technical and creative workflows, and offer some thoughts on designing for the metaverse.


Connery Book Published

by Professor Andrew Spicer

We are pleased to share that Professor of Cultural Production, Andrew Spicer, has published his new book – Sean Connery: Acting, Stardom, and National Identity. The book explores how Connery’s performances combine to form an all-encompassing screen legend, and considers how the actor embodied national identity, both on screen and through his public role as an activist campaigning for Scottish independence.


The book is now available to be purchased now on Manchester University press and Amazon.


Book to attend the London launch in September in person or online. The Bristol launch will be held on Sunday 4th September, and details of how to book will be announced soon.

Read more

Free online seminar in response to gender-based discrimination

Ameliorative work: Women electronic music artists’ responses to gender-based discrimination

12th May 16:00-17:15

In this seminar Professor Parsley and Dr Johansson present their recent paper which explores gender-based discrimination in the electronic music industry.

Based on data collected for a larger project on women DJ producers, the paper takes as its starting point the gendered conditions, characteristics and lived experience of work in the cultural industries.

The paper introduces the concept ‘ameliorative work’ to analyse both individual and collective efforts by women to survive and thrive in the industry. In so doing it responds to recent initiatives to increase gender diversity in the music industry and highlights a sector of the creative industries that has so far received limited research attention.

Register (Free)

A warm welcome to our two new PhD researchers

Jane Dawson and Cairi Jacks are the first to be awarded fully funded PhDs from the DCRC

Congratulations to Jane Dawson and Cairi Jacks for being the first two to be awarded fully funded PhD studentships.

Jane Dawson is a PhD filmmaker whose research interrogates the role of indigenous creatives in the UK’s natural history film sector. View Jane’s work here.

Cairi’s practice as an artist takes a phenomenological approach, offering the opportunity to take part in an embodied and sensory relationship with the natural world. View Cairi’s work here.

We look forward to following their journey and sharing their work on our platform!

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Safeguarding the Metaverse

A report by Verity McIntosh and Catherine Allen

As the metaverse continues to develop, various safety concerns and vulnerabilities need to be addressed at the industry, regulatory and governmental levels.

A new report from The Institution of Engineering and Technology has been published by one of our research fellows, Verity McIntosh and the CEO of Limina Immersive, Catherine Allen, on the harms that metaverse users may be exposed to.

The report serves as a guide for existing and future harms in virtual reality and the metaverse to support UK immersive technology policymaking.

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i-Docs, Crisis and Multi-perspectival thinking

Monday 9th of may 2022

Join us for a fascinating day of presentations, posters and discussions on the theme of ‘i-Docs, Crisis and Multi-perspectival Thinking.’

As the field of i-docs (interactive and immersive documentary) has matured, it has become clear that there are i-Docs practices which have a particular purchase on illuminating crises.

Join Dr Judith Aston and Dr Ella Harris from Birkbeck, University of London for: i-Docs, Crisis and Multi-perspectival thinking. This is a free online symposium, filled with fascinating presentations, posters and discussions exploring how i-Docs have been used to highlight societal crises.

9.30-4.30pm. Please register in advance for this event.

Register (Free)

Job Opportunity: Research Fellow – My World project

Application closing date 10th April 2022

We are pleased to announce that we are re-advertising for the role of a Research Fellow on the MyWorld Project.


Launched in April 2021, MyWorld is a five-year programme part of the UK wide exploration into devolved research and development funding. Led by the Universities of Bristol with the Universities of Bath, Bath Spa, and UWE Bristol, MyWorld will position the South West as an international trailblazer in screen-based media.


We are looking for candidates with a track record of mapping and contextual research into evolving media practices, production processes and cultures, and the delivery of high-quality research outputs.


The role is based within UWE’s Digitial Cultures Research Centre at City Campus.

More Info

Container Magazine: Issue 05

Caption This, The Sound of Intimacy and Queer Healing Ghana

The fifth edition of Container Magazine has just dropped.


Michelle Theil challenges how social media platforms claim to be accessible for all, and Jenna Kunze shares familiar experiences of using voice notes to communicate with loved ones.


Coming Soon: Queer Healing Ghana

Kobena Ampofo speaks to queer artists and activists about online spaces of solidarity in light of proposed anti-LGBTQ legislation.


What an NFTease

James Wheale, innovation specialist and co-founder of StormJar critically considers both sides of the NFT debate.

Nightmare Market is the new prototype from Stormjar Studio funded by Bristol and Bath Creative R+D. Read the blog by Stormjar’s James Wheale, sharing an honest view at the considerations and hurdles in making a project on the blockchain.

Read More

i-Docs and More-Than-Human Encounters

Friday 25th March 2022 5pm GMT/12pm Eastern Time

How do we augment our entangled relationships to the environment? What happens when i-Docs and the more-than-human meet?

i-Docs are collaborating with Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival to present a dynamic interactive session on the entanglements of multiple media platforms, augmentation, and other species.

Join us for this roundtable discussion as new media practitioners and theorists dive into how emerging new media forms enter into, think through, and remake entangled environments.

This roundtable discussion will also feature interactive engagement among participants to unpack these practices and ideas.

Featuring Judith Aston, Sandra Gaudenzi and Mandy Rose from i-Docs. Moderated by Patricia Zimmerman from FLEFF.

Find out more information about this event here.


Tales of Care and Repair Publication Launch

Friday 25th Feb 18-19.30, The Workshop at Studio 5 Watershed, 1 Canon’s Road, Bristol

Tales of Care and Repair is a crowd-sourced collection of photographs, interviews, events and stories about the objects we repair today. From Feb 2021 to Feb 2022, over 700 stories of everyday repairs were gathered through a comprehensive programme of activities that included a number of workshops, online conversations, symposium events and exhibitions.


The tales of Care and Repair publication launch celebrates the work carried out to date and pays thanks to those who made the project possible.


Find out more information about Tales of Care and Repair here.


This event is free, but numbers are limited.


Stream the Channel 4 Symposium

Available to watch on YouTube

‘New Frontiers? Channel 4’s Move Out of London’ is now available to watch in full on YouTube.

This symposium explores the relationship between regional cultural production and the increasingly global dynamics shaping audio-visual culture, asking if relocation will be a force for progressive change, stimulating creativity, encouraging new voices and genuine diversity.

Featuring a presentation from Kevin Blacoe, Channel 4’s Head of Partnerships Nations and Regions, a panel discussion and a plenary.


Artist in residence opportunity

Image Credit: Alina Grubnyak

Bristol + Bath Creative R+D are pleased to invite artists of any discipline to apply to observe and capture the learnings of Here + There in a new public artwork. This artist will also engage with local arts students through talks and creative seminars. The selected artist will receive a fee of £25,000, be in residence for up to 6 months (2 days per week) and showcase their new work at the B+B R+D end of programme showcase. Submissions are open until 20 February (23.59 GMT).

Find out more

Investigating the Impact of Channel 4’s Move to Bristol

by Professor Andrew Spicer

This research project, funded by Bristol + Bath Creative R+D, investigates the effect of Channel 4’s move to Bristol in 2018-19 as it transformed from a London-based to a regionally-based public service broadcaster, with its new headquarters in Leeds and two ‘creative hubs’ in Bristol and Glasgow. Andrew’s research will examine how this relocation has changed the ways in which Channel 4 operates and the impact it has had on Bristol’s screen ecology.

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Is fake news a digital problem?

Watch Marcus Gilroy-Ware’s webinar discussing the launch of his latest book “After the Fact?”. Featuring special guests: Dr. Sivamohan Valluvan, Professor Jo Littler and Professor Natalie Fenton.

The words ‘fake news’ have become an ominous symbol for an informational landscape where nothing is quite what it seems, any factual assertion can be thrown into doubt, and who you believe has almost entirely to do with your pre-existing political persuasions. Is it as simple as blaming the digital technologies we use to learn about politics?


After the Fact? looks at fake news and conspiracy theories, ‘bullshit journalism’ and the resurgence of the far-right.


Find out more: http://www.mjgw.net/


i-Docs community Conversations

Kate Nash and Patty Zimmerman

A wide-ranging online conversation about Kate’s recently published book – Interactive Documentary – Theory and Debate 


Published in July by RoutledgeInteractive Documentary – Theory and Debate explores the dizzying array of new documentary forms that have emerged in the past ten years, drawing continuities between digital and documentary practice


i-Docs co-convenors Judith Aston, Sandra Gaudenzi and Mandy Rose hope that you will be able to join us.  


Nov 17th 5pm GMT  – Online

Book Tickets (Free)

Duncan Speakman – Only Expansion – wins BFI Immersive Art and XR Competition 

We are proud to announce that Duncan Speakman, who recently completed his PHD with DCRC, has been announced as one of the winners of the 65th BFI London Film Festival. 

Duncan’s AR piece titled “Only Expansion” won the Immersive Art and XR competition. 

“A powerful and impressionistic reflection on what it means to live on a planet in crisis, Only Expansion connects the here to the elsewhere, letting you experience our troubled environment through sound”. 

Find out more

Repair and Reparation:
Brazilian realities

The practices of repair in Brazil and their implications on the environment, art, economy and society

Tuesday 21st September 2021
10am Brazil, 2pm UK and 6.30pm India

This seminar aims to expand the understanding of repair practices in Brazil and their implications in art, environment, economy and society, articulating such practices in light of the environmental emergency and the need to re-found the way humanity relates to objects and materials. The guests’ distinct experiences present an overview of repairs and reparations in the country from the perspective of diversity, in order to reimagine the idea of “repair” in a collective way, aiming at socioeconomic and environmental regeneration.


Speakers: Izabella Teixeira, Ricardo Abramovay, Pedro Belasco, Nêgo Bispo, Cinthia Mendonça, Fred Paulino (moderator)

Book Tickets (Free)

COVID-19 Creative Economy Resilience & Recovery Survey

COVID-19 Creative Economy Resilience & Recovery is a nationwide project led by UWE Bristol and funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), addressing questions of resilience, and subsequent recovery and rebuilding, for the UK’s creative sector, with a specific focus on creative micro-businesses.


In collaboration with a network of creative hub partners in nine city regions across the UK, the project team will design and assess the viability of a resilience framework and toolkit for creative micros, offering policymakers and other stakeholders tools which can aid in sectoral recovery and renewal from the COVID-19 crisis.

Participate In The Survey

Research Seminar: Restorative Futures – Premises of Future Architectures

Wednesay 14th July 2021, 5pm BST

What happens to architecture after the climate emergency undoes its foundational assumptions of growth, extraction, and progress?


Under the banner Restorative Futures, we are delighted to welcome MOULD collective, for the third in a series of online research seminars at DCRC this summer, each aligned with one of our four research strands. It will address the demand posed by our current climate emergency to engage in a thorough reconsideration of our collective ways of being in the world, amidst assumptions of growth, extraction, and progress.


Respondent: Professor Teresa Dillon (DCRC)

This talk will introduce a series of premises that inform the ongoing research project Architecture after Architecture, led by Jeremy Till and Tatjana Schneider.

Book Tickets (Free)

New Frontiers? Channel 4’s Move out of London: 1-Day Symposium

Wednesay 7th July 2021, 9.30am – 6pm BST

A one-day conference to discuss Channel 4’s move out of London and to debate broader issues about the role of regional screen production.


The channel’s relocation is embedded within broader strategies that aim to challenge London’s dominance and to ‘rebalance’ the UK’s screen ecology. Occasioned by these developments, the aim of this one-day conference is to discuss the motivations, mechanisms and political machinations of Channel 4’s move out of London and to debate these broader issues about the role of regional screen production.


Follow these links for Abstracts for the day and relevant biographies.


Creative Economies Seminar #2
Growth of What? New Narratives for the Creative Economy

Dr Jonathan Gross

Wednesday 30th June, 5pm BST

As the second of four Summer 2021 research seminars, the Digital Cultures Research Centre’s Creative Economies Lab is delighted to welcome Dr Jonathan Gross. 


Dr. Gross will argue for both the necessity to understand and critique how GDP derives significant power as an indicator of growth from its capacity to establish a simple narrative framework for collective progress, and the need to consider what might be alternative grounds for narrating the ‘success’ of economies – and of creative economies in particular.


Following the talk, Jonathan will be joined in conversation by Simon Moreton, with a Q&A session following the talk.

Watch Back

Face Unlock: A Pervasive Media Lunchtime talk with Teresa Dillon

Friday 5th March 2021, 1pm

Join Teresa Dillon, artist and Professor of City Futures at UWE, to explore the world of facial recognition & its intersectional histories.


Our technologies are never neutral.
Embedded within their design and articulation are nested decisions that propagate certain views and ways of being in the world, over others. This talk focuses on the histories of facial recognition software, drawing on research into early photography, anthropometric techniques and the normalisation of the ‘criminal profile’.


In 2020 The South West Creative Technology Network (SWCTN) launched their Data Fellowship as part of a year of thinking about Data. Now with the prototype strand in full swing the team are looking towards their Data Showcase on 26 March, an online day of fun and adventure exploring data, new forms of investment and inclusive futures. 

This talk is in partnership with SWCTN.

Find out more

Making Through Failing
A Pervasive Media Studio Lunchtime talk with Rob Eagle

Friday 5th February 2021 – 1pm

We are looking forward to hearing from DCRC Member and PHD researcher Rob Eagle as he discusses Making Through Failing.


Inspired by Jack Halberstam’s The Queer Art of Failure, this talk embraces techniques of failing, losing, forgetting, unmaking and not knowing. These are actions and feelings many artists, academics and queers know all too well by ‘not fitting in’ or achieving the usual societal metrics of success. Once we embrace our outcast status, everyday failure can open up opportunities for us to live non-normative lifestyles, form alternative kinship groups and create work that is true to who we are and how we see the world.


This talk was broadcast live on Watershed’s Youtube Channel – Link below.

Image Credit – Rob Eagle

Find out more

Publication launch of Making It Real: A Policy Programme for UK Documentary Film

Tuesday 2nd February 2021

DCRC Members Steve Presence, Alice Quigley and Andrew Spicer have just announced the publication of Making It Real, following on from the UK Feature Docs’ previous report, Keeping it Real: Towards a Documentary Film Policy for the UK, published last summer.


Based on a survey of 200 leading UK nonfiction producers and directors, Keeping it Real outlined a chronic lack of funding, support and coordination at the heart of the UK’s feature documentary film sector. This new report represents the sector’s response to those original findings in the light of global events including the COVID-19 pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement.


It ultimately comprises a new industrial strategy for documentary based on inclusivity, sustainability and the creation of optimum conditions for success at home and internationally.

Find out more

Introducing Container
A Pervasive Media Studio Lunchtime
talk with Alice Quigley

Friday 9th February, 1pm

Join Alice Quigley from the Creative Economies Lab for a lunchtime talk at the Pervasive Media Studio.


This is a fantastic opportunity to find out more about Container: a new online magazine about creative tech. Container explores the world we live in by looking at & questioning how we use technology for social & cultural purposes.


Container is based in Bristol and born out of a long-term collaboration between Watershed’s Pervasive Media Studio and UWE Bristol’s Creative Economies Lab, alongside leading creative and technology-based labs and research centres across the South West.


Find out more

Creative Technology Lab talk – Rod Dickinson & Sarah Selby – Control Shift / The Departed

Wednesday 9th December, 4pm

Find out more about the ‘Control Shift’ digital art programme Rod Dickinson co-curated with Martha King and Becca Rose Glowacki in Bristol in October 2020. Sarah Selby will discuss ’The Departed (A Digital Seance)’ a digital artwork which she made with Tim Kindberg for Control Shift.


The Control Shift programme brought together both international and Bristol based contemporary artists whose artworks and workshops explored ways that we can reimagine and rethink our digital tools. The programme was part online and part IRL with physical installations situated across the city.


Control Shift Network is a collective of artists, technologists and producers.



Image Credit: The Departed image by Ibi Feher / Control Shift image by Becca Rose Glowacki & Control Shift Network

Link to join talk

Keeping it Real: Towards a Documentary Film Policy for the UK

Policy Report

‘UK Feature Docs: A Study of the Feature Documentary Film Industry’ is an AHRC-funded study of the UK’s feature documentary film industry.


The project will map the industry, historicise its development and explore the manifold challenges involved in the finance, production, distribution and exhibition of feature documentary films in the UK.


In 2019, the team launched what became the largest survey ever conducted of UK feature doc producers and directors. Keeping it Real: Towards A Documentary Film Policy for the UK, is based on the survey findings and reveals a sector that was in urgent need of intervention even before the advent of COVID-19.

More info

August sees the release of These Pages Fall Like Ash Second Edition

Published August 2020

DCRC Members Tom Abba and Duncan Speakman are releasing a second edition of These Pages Fall Like Ash – an immersive story told across time, place and the pages of two books. One book is a crafted, physical, familiar artefact, a guide to an imagined world, and a reminder that your own world is just as unique. The other is a digital text that weaves the two books together. Immerse yourself from August 20th 2020.



Composed by Tom Abba, Duncan Speakman With Emilie Grenier, Nick Harkaway and Neil Gaiman.

More info

Hot off the press in July a new edited collection: Contemporary Radical Film Culture

Published July 2020

DCRC researcher Steve Presence, alongside co-editors Mike Wayne and Jack Newsinger, have announced the publication of their new edited collection – Contemporary Radical Film Culture: Networks, Organisations and Activists – the first book to emerge from the Radical Film Network.

With essays from some of the leading scholars and practitioners in the field, this is the first book to investigate twenty-first century radical film practices across production, distribution and exhibition at a global level.

More info

DCRC to collaborate in new
multi-million-pound creative
hub for the South West

5 year project will start Autumn 2020

DCRC researchers will join a new creative media powerhouse called MyWorld which is set to create more than 700 jobs and further the South West as an international trailblazer in screen-based media, thanks to £46 million funding.


Led by Professor David Bull at the University of Bristol, the initiative will develop major new research and development (R&D) facilities and partnerships connecting regional, national and international creative industry and technology partners.


DCRC’s Mandy Rose will lead the UWE Bristol team in MyWorld, working with Simon Moreton and Jon Dovey. The UWE Bristol academics will contribute expertise in immersive media production,  and draw on a significant body of research into creative industry ecosystems to understand the impact of the MyWorld project in the city region.


Photo – Creative Producers International Residential Lab at the Watershed, Bristol.


Photo credit: Shamphat Productions

More info