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Nesta is an innovation foundation. For us, innovation means turning bold ideas into reality and changing lives for the better. We use our expertise, skills and funding in areas where there are big challenges facing society.

This event took place on Thursday 23 February. You can watch the recording below.

From Teletubbies to Fortnite, the way children consume content has changed forever. What can the creative industries learn from the way children watch, listen and play in the new digital age and how might this understanding help the sector better support childhood development?

Dr Dylan Yamada-Rice, a Senior Lecturer in Immersive Storytelling at Manchester Metropolitan University, shared insights from her research into how far immersive storytelling and digital entertainment can support childhood development. Dylan shared how the creative and media industry can collaborate with academia to generate new forms of content that support children outside of a formal education setting.

In this free online event, Dr Dylan Yamada-Rice was live in conversation with Nesta’s Director of Creative Innovation, Deborah Fox, to discuss how creative studios and artists can work effectively with researchers, educators and young children to co-create entertaining and educational new content.

Why you should watch the recording

This event was for anyone working in the creative media space, including: broadcasters, film and TV makers and immersive studios. It was also of interest to anyone working in education or with young people with a commitment to improving educational outcomes.

Deborah and Dylan explored the opportunities and challenges of co-designing children’s content and shared practical guidance on how creatives and academics can collaborate.

The opinions expressed in this event recording are those of the speaker. For more information, view our full statement on external contributors.



Dr Dylan Yamada-Rice


Dr Dylan Yamada-Rice is a Senior Lecturer in Immersive Storytelling in the School of Digital Arts at Manchester Metropolitan University. Her research sits at the intersection of experimental design and social sciences, focusing on digital storytelling, games and play on a range of platforms such as apps, augmented and virtual reality, as well as new content for television, all with an emphasis on media for children. She is currently working on an AHRC-funded project looking at the future of emerging technologies in broadcast media and looking at howplay could help children cope with disasters.


Deborah Fox


Deborah Fox leads Nesta's Arts practice. Working in partnership with creative and cultural organisations, she helps develop and test new ideas that address social challenges. Deborah has led a number of innovative programmes, including a research and development programme exploring the role of creatives in the development of immersive experiences that support mental health and wellbeing.