Getting started with the Digital R&D Fund for the Arts in Wales
The first call for submissions to the new Digital R&D Fund for the arts in Wales has been open for three weeks now and I've had the chance to talk to a number of people about the programme. I'm keen to talk to many more over the next few weeks; if you'd like to arrange a meeting, please drop me an email - [email protected]
I've found that there are a number of useful reports and websites that keep cropping up in conversations as people get started on their project proposals, so I've started to put together a list of things that may be useful when you're thinking about your application to the fund. It is in no way exhaustive, but can provide a starting point for further discussion around some of the themes and issues that you might want to tackle.
I'll endeavour to keep this updated as other resources become apparent.
All the information about the Digital R&D Fund for the arts in Wales can be found on the Nesta website. We also have partner funds in both England and Scotland and it is worth familiarising yourself with the work that's already happened there. The website for the England fund contains case studies from the pilot fund and the Scotland website has information about their pilot projects which may prove useful.
The website for the England fund also has a partner finder tool; if you're looking for a technology provider and aren't sure where to start, this is great place. Over the next few weeks we'll be encouraging more Wales based technology companies to register their details here.
Innovation and learning applicable to Wales:
We're looking for projects that demonstrate innovation and generate learning for the wider arts sector in Wales. The Open Book of Social Innovation provides a useful set of methods for understanding the process of innovation. Similarly, skills platform provides useful insights and guidance for people looking to develop innovative projects.
Last year, Arts Council Wales undertook a series of open discussion around the question "What kind of creative Wales would you like to see in 2020, and how do we get there?" The results of these discussions can be found on the Sgwrs Gelfyddydol website.
Information about the themes:
We're looking for projects that expand audience reach and engagement or develop new business models through one of six themes (Big Data; Fundraising; Mobile and Location-based services; Making the most of arts organisations' archives; Social media; and Digital content distribution).
To get you started, Counting What Counts aims to help senior cultural decision-makers think differently about big data, while the NT Live report shares lessons on how arts organisations can use digital technology to drive innovation. Over the next few weeks we'll add more examples and reports to this section, covering the rest of the themes of the programme.
Project partner websites
Hopefully this provides a useful starting point for thinking about projects that might be eligible for funding through the Digital R&D Fund. As I said above, it is by no means exhaustive or authoritative and I'd be really interested to hear of other resources that people find useful.