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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/M023265/1
Title: The Digital Creativity Hub
Principal Investigator: Ursu, Professor MF
Other Investigators:
Hook, Professor JD Reed, Dr DJ Richards, Professor J
Austin, Professor J Cowling, Professor PI Fernandes, Professor KJ
Colton, Professor S Li, Professor F Deterding, Professor S
Wade, Professor ARP Latham, Professor W Walker, Dr JA
Marsden, Professor EJ Gow, Dr J Petrie, Professor H
Cairns, Professor PA Holliman, Professor N Murphy, Professor D
Block, Dr F O Drachen, Professor A
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Aalto University AECOM Limited (UK) AI Factory Ltd.
AIGameDev Anti-Matter Games Limited Arup Group Ltd
Association for Language Learning BBC British Library
BT BZP Pro Inc City of York Council
City, University of London Codemasters Common Ground Theatre
Complex City Apps Cornwall and Isles of Scilly LEP Creative UK (Creative England)
Curtin University Cybula Ltd DTP Group
DTS Licencing Ltd UK Durham, University of Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR)
Eutechnyx Fab Foundation (Fab Labs) UK Gaist Ltd
Game Republic Glasslab Games GV Art Gallery
Harvard University Headcast Ltd Helix Arts
HerxAngels IBM UK Ltd Imaginarium
Int Game Developers Assoc IGDA Joe Cutting: Digital Exhibits Kirkyards Consulting
Knowledge Transfer Network Limited Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership MOOD International Ltd
Moon Collider Ltd Museums Association Nat Inst for Health & Care Excel (NICE)
Netherlands Inst for Sound and Vision New Visuality Northern Content Ltd
Northern University of Malaysia (UUM) One & Other TV Orange Helicopter
Philips Playgen Portugal Telecom
Rebellion Red Kite Alliance Science City York
Science Museum Group SideFX Sony Interactive Entertainment
Stainless Games Ltd Sue Ryder Care Superfast Cornwall
Supermassive Games Swrve The Beautiful Meme
The British Academy The Churches Conservation Trust The Computer Shed
The European Second Language Association The National Science and Media Museum TIGA The Ind Game Dev Assoc Ltd
TigerX Timeline Computer Archive Ukie (Interactive Entertainment Assoc)
University of Bradford Waseda University We R Interactive Ltd
York Curiouser Cultural Association York Theatre Royal York, North Yorkshire & East Riding LEP
Yorkshire Teaching Schools Alliance
Department: Computer Science
Organisation: University of York
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 October 2015 Ends: 30 September 2022 Value (£): 4,039,831
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Artificial Intelligence Computer Graphics & Visual.
Human-Computer Interactions Image & Vision Computing
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Communications Healthcare
Creative Industries Transport Systems and Vehicles
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
03 Mar 2015 Next Stage Digital Economy Interview Announced
30 Jan 2015 Next Stage Digital Economy Sift Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
The creative industries are crucial to UK social and cultural life and one of the largest and fastest-growing sectors of the economy. Games and media are key pillars for growth in the creative industries, with UK turnovers of £3.5bn and £12.9bn respectively. Research in digital creativity has started to be well supported by governmental funds. To achieve full impact from these investments, translational and audience-facing research activities are needed to turn ideas into commercial practice and societal good. We propose a "Digital Creativity" Hub for such next-step research, which will produce impact from a huge amount of research activity in direct collaboration with a large group of highly engaged stakeholders, delivering impact in the Digital Economy challenge areas of Sustainable Society, Communities and Culture and New Economic Models.

York is the perfect location for the DC Hub, with a fast-growing Digital Creativity industry (which grew 18.4% from 2011 to 2012), and 4800 creative digital companies within a 40-mile radius of the city. The DC Hub will be housed in the Ron Cooke Hub, alongside the IGGI centre for doctoral training, world-class researchers, and numerous small hi-tech companies.

The DC Hub brings:

- A wealth of research outcomes from Digital Economy projects funded by £90m of grants, £40m of which was managed directly by the investigators named in the proposal. The majority of these projects are interdisciplinary collaborations which involved co-creation of research questions and approaches with creative industry partners, and all of them produced results which are ripe for translational impact.

- Substantial cash and in-kind support amounting to pledges of £9m from 80 partner organisations. These include key organisations in the Digital Economy, such as the KTN, Creative England and the BBC, major companies such as BT, Sony and IBM, and a large number of SMEs working in games and interactive media. The host Universities have also pledged £3.3m in matched funding, with the University of York agreeing to hire four "transitional" research fellows on permanent contracts from the outset leading to academic positions as a Professor, a Reader and two Lecturers.

- Strong overlap with current projects run by the investigators which have complementary goals. These include the NEMOG project to study new economic models and opportunities for games, the Intelligent Games and Game Intelligence (IGGI) centre for doctoral training, with 55+ PhDs, and the Falmouth ERA Chair project, which will contribute an extra 5 five-year research fellowships to the DC Hub, leveraging £2m of EC funding for translational research in digital games technologies.

- A diverse and highly active base of 16 investigators and 4 named PDRAs across four universities, who have much experience of working together on funded research projects delivering high-impact results. The links between these investigators are many and varied, and interdisciplinarity is ensured by a group of investigators working across Computer Science, Theatre Film and TV, Electronics, Art, Audio Production, Sociology, Education, Psychology, and Business.

- Huge potential for step-change impact in the creative industries, with particular emphasis on video game technologies, interactive media, and the convergence of games and media for science and society. Projects in these areas will be supported by and feed into basic research in underpinning themes of data analytics, business models, human-computer interaction and social science. The projects will range over impact themes comprising impact projects which will be specified throughout the life of the Hub in close collaboration with our industry partners, who will help shape the research, thus increasing the potential for major impact.

- A management team, with substantial experience of working together on large projects for research and impact in collaboration with the digital creative industries.

Key Findings
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Potential use in non-academic contexts
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Date Materialised
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Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.york.ac.uk