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Arts and humanities research and innovation

This paper investigates the role that arts and humanities research plays in the innovation system.

This paper investigates the role that arts and humanities research plays in the innovation system.

Key findings:

  • Arts and humanities research broadens our knowledge and provides new ideas that can be applied directly in innovation.
  • For that research to be valuable, several conditions have to be satisfied, for example: participants must have incentives to create and spread knowledge; and there must be a demand for new knowledge.
  • The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) helps arts and humanities researchers make wider contributions to society and the economy. 
  • It has a strategic leadership role in ensuring that policy takes account of the distinctive role and nature of arts and humanities research.

Traditional understandings of innovation emphasise the importance of science and technology research. In contrast, this paper investigates the role that arts and humanities research plays in the innovation system.

 

This research suggests innovation flourishes when there is a strong knowledge base combined with a culture that embraces novelty and a diversity of ideas. It explores how the Government supports Arts and Humanities research in the UK and its role in the innovation system, as well as work carried out by the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

 

Authors:

Hasan Bakhshi, Philippe Schneider and Christopher Walker

Authors

Hasan Bakhshi

Hasan Bakhshi

Hasan Bakhshi

Centre Director, Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre (PEC); and Executive Director, Creative Economy and Data Analytics, Nesta

Hasan oversees Nesta's creative economy policy, research and practical work.

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