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Hello <<First Name>>,

Welcome to the latest Creative Economy Digest, with the latest creative industry news including projects updates from the Creative Industries Clusters and Audience of the Future programmes, funded by UKRI.

**COSTAR BRIEFING** Watch the final CoSTAR Briefing recorded in London, see the official page for the Arts & Humanities Research Council's £75.6m CoSTAR competition including slides and FAQ.

Plus all this and more...

➤ UK Government guarantee for Horizon Europe applicants 
➤ Horizon Europe webinar on 2023 Opportunities, 8 Dec - Register 
➤ Creative Research & Innovation VP Landscape - Complete the Survey
➤ Watch Back: CoSTAR Cardiff Briefing Event and Presentation Slides
➤ Zopeful Climate @ Work Study 2022 - Take the Survey 
➤ StoryFutures Academy Launches Annual Report
➤ Speaker Submissions Open for XR Conference AWE USA 2023 
➤ Live from Rotterdam - Watch the 2022 VR Awards Livestream1 Dec 
➤ Join StoryFutures Academy at FOCUS 2022, 6-9 December
➤ Apply for Development & Assistant Editor job opportunities at NI Screen  
➤ Take Part in Creative UK's Redesigning Freelancing Survey
➤ Apply to the £6m Canada-UK Commercialising Quantum Tech Programme
➤ StoryTrails Audience Insights Report: Impact of Project on Participants
➤ New XR Stories Project to Unlock Potential of VP for the Digital Economy
➤ The People's Piazza: A History of Covent Garden now on BBC iPlayer
➤ Bodyswaps Launch Grant Giving Institutions Access to Soft-Skills Training
➤ £15k Arts Council NI Fund for Makers to Develop Work: Closes 20 Jan '23
➤ BEYOND 2022 On Demand now live - catch up on conference sessions 



£75.6m AHRC CoSTAR Funding 
For researchers and creative industries professionals to apply to host a new creative facility for the UK’s renowned screen and performance sectors. Closes 2 Feb 2023.
 More information

£15k for NI Makers to Create Body of Work
Arts Council NI welcome applications for their Rosy James Memorial Trust Award worth £15,000, to assist makers develop a body of work. Closes 20 Jan 2023.
 More information

Arts Council NI’s Small Grants Programme
Access grants between £500-£10k for professional arts organisations and community groups to support projects in any art form. Closes 31 March 2023.
 More information

Future Foundation Mentee Opportunities
Applications open for Future Screens NI mentoring programme, to match experienced practitioners to artists / creative freelancers in need of help and support.
 More information

Horizon Europe Gov Safety Net

The UK government provides financial support to successful Horizon Europe applicants from the UK, to ensure that eligible, successful UK applicants will continue to be guaranteed funding. 
 More information
UK Government Guarantee for Horizon Europe Applicants

The UK government provides financial support to successful Horizon Europe applicants from the UK, to cover all Horizon Europe calls that close on or before 31 December 2022. This support ensures that eligible, successful UK applicants will continue to be guaranteed funding, supporting them to continue their important work in research and innovation during the ongoing delays while the UK government continues to encourage the EU to formalise UK association. UK applicants need to be included on the initial grant proposal as a ‘beneficiary’ with an assigned budget to qualify for financial support. 

 Read more 

 8 Dec, 1-3pm: Horizon Europe Cluster 2 Webinar on 2023 Opportunities

This webinar (Thursday 8 December, 1-3pm) is provided by the UK National Contact Point for Cluster 2 'Culture, Creativity and Inclusive Society' of Horizon Europe and aims to provide a detailed introduction to the Cluster 2 opportunities in 2023. Cluster 2 includes research funding opportunities within cultural heritage and the cultural and creative industries. The webinar will address how UK applicants can take part in these funding opportunities.


Watch Back: CoSTAR London Briefing Event

Recorded at the final briefing at the Digital Catapult in London, the briefing covers the context, scope, eligibility, structure and application process for the £75.6m, 6 year, challenge. Presented by CoSTAR Challenge Director Prof Andrew Chitty and Innovate Lead, Laura Partridge, from the CoSTAR team at the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)

 Watch briefing

 Download slides

Take the Virtual Production Landscape Survey

This survey is being managed by BOP Consulting to support a research project being undertaken by the Creative Research And Innovation ‘centre’ at Loughborough University (CRAIC) into the Virtual Production landscape. This research project is being undertaken independently of the AHRC CoStar process and will not have any influence on the assessment of bids. Responses to this survey will form the basis of a map of the Virtual Production assets, activities and technologies across the UK, which will be made publicly available in January 2023.

 Take survey (approx 10 minutes to complete) 


Clwstwr & Ffilm Cymru Wales Release Green Cymru Challenge Fund Case Studies

With a share in £75,000 and six months to develop their ideas, the Green Cymru project's outcomes demonstrate how R&D and media Innovation can change the future of film production and drive the TV and Screen Industry in Wales to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. Discover how Cardiff Animation FestivalChris Buxton and Severn Screen are developing innovative and creative solutions within animation and film production to green the screen sector in Wales and beyond. 

➤ Read case studies

StoryTrails Audience Insights Report: Impact of Project on Participants

UNBOXED: Creativity in the UK, has announced data setting out the impact of its entirely free programme of ten major commissions delivered across the four nations of the UK in 2022. Live events have taken place in 107 UK-wide locations featuring thousands of individual community events; 13.5 million have engaged with content commissioned for broadcast and digital platforms - a number that continues to grow. Across its live tour, StoryTrails engaged its own audience insights team, which have recently reported insights into the impact, reflections and reactions of those who participated. 

➤ Read more

£15k Award for NI Makers Offered to Create New Body of Work

Future Screens NI funding partners Arts Council of Northern Ireland are welcoming applications for their Rosy James Memorial Trust Award worth £15,000 to assist makers to investigate and develop a body of work which would otherwise be unattainable. Applications are due by 20 January 2023.

➤ More info & apply

XR Stories Leads New Project to Unlock the Potential of Virtual Production 

XR Stories has launched a ground-breaking five-year project that will combine world-class research with industry expertise to drive innovation in virtual production across the UK. The project, XR Network+ Virtual Production in the Digital Economy, will create a specialist community at the convergence of ideas, technologies and creative practice in virtual production to deliver impact and opportunity for the whole of the digital economy. The project is led by XR Stories (University of York) in collaboration with AHRC and  Creative Industries Clusters projects at Ulster University, Cardiff University, the University of Edinburgh and University of the Arts London.

➤ Read more

Clwstwr Partners with Newly Launched XR Network+ Virtual Production

Clwstwr is one of the partners in the new research network commissioned to set the agenda for future innovation in virtual production (VP) technology, content creation and consumption, launched at BEYOND 2022. Producer Greg Mothersdale is Co-Investigator on the emergent XR Network+ Virtual Production in the Digital Economy, one of five UK awards (£3.5m + £3m co-investment, 2022-27) funded by the Engineering and Physical Science Research Council (EPSRC).

➤ Read more

Expert Opinion on Missing AI Narratives: Is there an AI Story Crisis?

XR Stories research fellow, Dr Jenn Chubb, who works on responsible and ethical science communication and storytelling, explores the stories told about Artificial Intelligence (AI). Topics examined are drawn from research undertaken by Dr Chubb with co-authors Dr Darren Reed and Peter Cowling published in an article in the Journal of AI & Society.

➤ Read more

Crew Call for New Talent Scheme in NI

Future Screens NI’s funding partner Northern Ireland Screen are hosting a Crew Call for a feature film shooting as part of our New Talent Focus scheme. They are seeking talented crew in all departments with filming beginning in February 2023.

➤ More info & apply

How Is XR Changing Storytelling? 

As part of the Belfast XR Festival, dedicated to showcasing the best of local and international immersive technology content, Future Screens NI's Director Paul Moore chaired a panel discussion with leading industry experts and FSNI R&D awardees Dee Harvey, Vincent Kinnaird and Lucy Baxter. The discussion focused on the process for creating an immersive experience and storytelling within immersive and interactive worlds, together with practical tips and insights into pre-production and workflow pipeline. 

➤ Read more

Case Study: Scoping Out the Possibility of Geo-Contextual Infotainment on Trains

Inspired by a train journey to Edinburgh, Pat Younge, founder of Cardiff Productions Ltd shares his experience of this Clwstwr R&D project: “As someone interested in innovation and possibilities, I was inspired to see if it’d be possible to create and deliver geo-contextual information and entertainment to a train, I embarked upon my Tunnel Vision project”. 

➤ Read case study

Content Creators Required to Make 2 Minute Film

Future Screens NI’s funding partner Northern Ireland Screen are seeking content creators. In partnership with BBC NI, NI Screen are looking for documentary, animation & comedy ideas for Two Minute Masterpiece, as part of which four filmmakers will be selected to create their own video for publication on the BBC.

➤ More info & apply

StoryFutures Academy Launches Annual Report 

StoryFutures Academy announced the release of their 2021-22 Annual Report at an Executive Showcase breakfast Preparing for the Metaverse’, earlier this month. Now in its fifth year of operations, StoryFutures Academy has firmly established itself as the National Centre for Immersive Storytelling, growing and developing the UK’s immersive economy via a unique focus on creative content and combination of interlinked R&D and training. The report explores how they have helped train over 1200 screen industries professionals.

➤ Read report

Storyhaven: Immersive Story Game Platform Live 

Trailblazer recipient from Bristol + Bath Creative R+D, Storyhaven, is now live for families to play in the immersive story world. This game encourages reluctant readers and challenges established readers with this new social reading experience.

➤ More info

Consonance: AI Meets Poetry Meets Film

Belfast-based film production company Armchair and Rocket will be screening a new project as part of a Future Screens NI R&D award. Consonance is a collaboration between the staff and students at the Seamus Heaney Centre at Queen’s University Belfast and Armchair and Rocket. It draws on the unique talents of Belfast digital artist, Glenn Marshall, and his world-leading work in artificial intelligence. 

➤ More info

Recruitment Opp: Development Assistant Role

Future Screens NI funding partner Northern Ireland Screen are seeking a Development Assistant with a passion for story in books, graphic novels, theatre, TV or film. The opportunity is for one new entrant to join Out of Orbit’s team. The role involves both practical and creative skills and the successful applicant will be steered through both disciplines. Apply by 16 December.

➤ More info & apply

Recruitment Opp: Trainee Assistant Editor Role

Future Screens NI’s funding partner Northern Ireland Screen are seeking a Trainee Assistant Editor to work with Red Wolf Films, a new production and editing company based in Holywood, NI specialising in documentaries. As part of their Company Placement scheme, NI Screen is looking for someone to collaborate with a global team on exciting documentaries.

➤ More info & apply


Bodyswaps & Meta Immersive Learning Partner to Launch Grant

Bodyswaps has announced an exciting partnership with Meta Immersive Learning, giving 100 higher and further education institutions access to virtual reality hardware and software across the UK, North America, France and Belgium. Bodyswaps will provide each institution with a 3-month unlimited, free access to its full soft skills learning library. Meta will support with hardware donations of Meta Quest 2 VR headsets. Entries close 20 December 2022.

➤ More info & apply

StoryFutures Academy at FOCUS 2022 

StoryFutures Academy's Head of Virtual Production, Prof. Peter Richardson, and Senior Technologist Johnny Johnson, are talking at FOCUS 2022. The AI: Your New BFF for Storytelling session will outline the upcoming opportunities for the creative industries. The session will also investigate how AI can help creators to focus on the creative aspect by taking over some labour-intensive tasks and providing new possibilities. 

➤ Read more

StoryFutures Academy Releases New BTS Films 

StoryFutures Academy is celebrating #BehindTheScenesWeek with the release of two brand new BTS seriesThe People’s Piazza: Behind The Scenes Of A Virtual Production is a series that explores how VP helped bring to life the archival material of the historically renowned Covent Garden Piazza. Secondly, VP Futures: Behind the Scenes of a Virtual Production Accelerator Programme, follows VP Futures, a ground-breaking training and development programme in VP supported by StoryFutures Academy and Future Screens NI with mentorship by Industrial Light & Magic and Epic Games. 

➤ Watch series

The People's Piazza: A History of Covent Garden on BBC iPlayer 

StoryFutures Academy is proud to announce that The People’s Piazza: A History of Covent Garden, is now available to view on BBC iPlayer. TV historian, presenter and StoryTrails Executive Producer David Olusoga steps back in time to explore the tumultuous 400 year history of one of the nation’s best-known public spaces, the Covent Garden Piazza.

➤ Watch now


 2 Dec: Creative Catalyst Briefing Event

The Innovate UK Creative Catalyst is a £30 million programme of phased financial and non-financial activities to provide end to end innovation support for high potential businesses in the creative sector. The aim of this competition is to scale up innovation within the creative industries by providing a package of targeted and continuous support to help businesses to grow. This online briefing event will outline the scope of the programme, the eligibility criteria and how UK registered micro and small businesses in the creative industries can apply for funding up to £50,000 to grow their business.

➤ More info & register

Creative UK: Redesigning Freelancing Survey 

Don’t miss the chance to have your say in the UK’s largest freelance survey, aiming to improve working conditions and drive industry change. According to DCMS; just under one third (32%) of the creative workforce is freelance, compared to 16% across the UK generally. Leading creative organisations are getting behind the survey, which aims to shape industry standards, drive change and futureproof all parts of the work environment for freelancers across the sector to create greater long-term value and sustainability into the freelance ecology. Closes 9 January 2023.

➤ Take survey

£6m Canada-UK Commercialising Quantum Tech Programme

UK registered businesses and Canadian SMEs can apply to collaborate on joint research and development projects looking to advance the development of quantum technologies and enable their commercial use. Innovate UK, part of UKRI and National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP) are investing up to £6 million in innovation projects. Their aim is to strengthen collaborative research and development (CR&D) through Canadian and UK partnerships towards commercialising quantum technologies. EOI by 31 Jan 2023.

➤ More info & apply

 Fri 1 Dec: Watch the VR Awards Livestream 

Join this livestream to celebrate the VR Awards live from Rotterdam, Netherlands this Friday, December 1. In collaboration with Immersive Tech Week, the 6th edition of the ceremony boasts an exciting live program including a pre-show special brought to you by Vertigo Games, exclusive coverage of all things new with VR, a celebration of VR accomplishments in 2022, plus glamorous red carpet highlights. 

➤ More info

Speaker Submissions for AWE USA 2023 are OPEN

Get involved in the inspiring AWE community of XR professionals that brings together end-users, investors, startups, creators, developers, brands, job seekers and recruiters. Operating year-round, activities include major conferences and exhibitions (USA, EU, Asia), year round online mini events and meetups, academy classes and workshops and finally the XR industry’s most prestigious and long standing awards competition - The Auggie Awards.

Speaker submissions for AWE USA 2023 (31 May - 2 June) are open now.

➤ Apply now

Survey: Global Climate @ Work Study 2022 are exploring opinions and attitudes in the workplace around climate awareness, employee engagement, company progress/policies and training. They're inviting feedback from employees and people at all levels, across all industries, about employer's climate action. Is your company moving aggressively to incorporate climate considerations in its business? Do you feel supported in challenging your company to do more? What could be going better? Whatever role or industry you work in, they'd love to hear from you! 

 Take survey (takes approx 7 minutes)

BEYOND 2022 Watch On Demand Now

BEYOND 2022 on demand is now live, with 30 videos available to watch at your leisure. Hosted by conference MC Jason Mohammad, catch up on sessions from award-winning actor Michael Sheen, Sophie Howe and many more inspirational speakers. The 5th annual BEYOND tackled questions around the main conference theme, focused on what part the creative industries should play in designing a zero-carbon future. Be the first to know about next year's conference and sign up to the BEYOND newsletter. 

 Watch On Demand


Innovate UK Creative Catalyst Briefing event
 02.12.2022 - 10am - 12pm

This online event outlines the scope of the £30m Creative Catalyst programme, the eligibility criteria and how UK micro and small businesses in the creative industries can apply for funding up to £50,000 to grow their business.
 More info

VR Awards Livestream 

 01.12.2022 at 19:30 CET
Join this livestream to celebrate the VR Awards live from Rotterdam, Netherlands in collaboration with Immersive Tech Week. 

 More info

Horizon Europe Cluster 2 Webinar
 08.12.2021 - 1-3pm
Provided by the UK National Contact Point for Cluster 2 'Culture, Creativity and Inclusive Society' of Horizon Europe, providing a detailed introduction to the Cluster 2 opportunities in 2023.

Creative Coalition Festival
 28.02.2023 - 03.03.2023
This hybrid event brings together the UK's finest creators, innovators, leaders and emerging talent to reimagine  the future of our world-leading Creative Industries
 More info

SXSW 2023
 10.03.2023 - 19.03.2023
The SXSW® Conference & Festivals celebrate the convergence of the tech, film, and music industries. Located deep in the heart of Austin, Texas and online.

 More info
Delivered by UK Research and Innovation as part of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, the Audience of the Future and Creative Industries Clusters challenge programmes represent the UK government's two largest investments of over £95m into world-leading research and development capabilities in the creative industries, an investment that is now worth £205m.

Audience of the Future focuses on the development of new immersive technologies such as virtual, augmented and mixed reality including the world-leading Demonstrator Programme with collaborations including the Royal Shakespeare Company and Aardman.

Creative Industries Clusters brings together world-class research talent with companies and organisations from across the UK, leading to massive positive impacts and ecosystems around nine clusters across the four UK nations.


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