UK Creative Hubs Visit
Visiting the School of Electronic Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) laboratories/makerspaces at Queen University Mary London (QMUL).

As part of our Hubs for Good programme, the British Council organised a week-long tour of creative hubs in London and Cardiff in May 2019. The tour was attended by four academics from programme partner University of Malaya and one Malaysian filmmaker (as part of the programme’s documentary team).

The goal of the visit was for the attendees to learn as much as possible about creative hubs in the UK including discovering how the hubs function and build and impact their communities, learning more about the context of the UK creative sector, and to create connections with other higher education institutions working with/in this sector, by looking at the kinds of research and programmes they run, how they influence policy (if they do), how they reach their audiences (students, staff, the public), and how they run university-based hubs (if they do). The visit aimed to strengthen the ties between the creative sectors of the UK and Malaysia and foster future collaborations.

Another aim of the visit was to support building the capacity of the attendees as delivery partners of the Hubs for Good programme by increasing their understanding of creative hubs as a whole and providing comparison points and case studies for their work in the context of the Malaysian creative sector.

We visited and met with the managers of various hubs and initiatives, such as:

During the visit, we also participated in and attended the event ‘Creative hubs and urban policy: A symposium on creative work and the city’ organized by Network and held at Stour Space. Dr Simon Soon of Cultural Centre, University of Malaya, along with Roxana Apostol (Programme Manager, Creative Economy), Daniel Donnelly (Programme Lead, Arts and Creative Industries, East Asia), and Florence Lambert (Head of Arts and Creative Industries, Malaysia) of the British Council spoke on a panel about creative hubs and British Council's work with them in Southeast Asia and the UK.

Updates on the visit were posted as a thread on Twitter.

UK Creative Hubs Visit 2
Makerversity’s co-working space in the Somerset House building, London.
UK Creative Hubs Visit 3
L-R: Dr Tarek Virani of Network Centre QMUL, Florence Lambert, Roxana Apostol, Dr Simon Soon and Daniel Donnelly at the Creative hubs and urban policy symposium at Stour Space.
UK Creative Hubs Visit 4
Dan Spain, Rabble Studio manager, presenting the values of their hub.
UK Creative Hubs Visit 5
The British Council, University of Malaya and Creative Cardiff teams outside Cardiff City Hall.
UK Creative Hubs Visit 6
The common co-working area for Tramshed Tech in Cardiff.