Ms Melissa Blackburn

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  • Qualifications:BA (Hons) (Goldsmiths'), MA (Essex) Dip (Bristol) Cert (UWE)
  • Position:Knowledge Exchange Manager
  • Department:Faculty of Arts, Creative Industries, and Education (ACE)
  • Telephone:+44117 965 6261

About me

I am currently working on the AHRC-funded Bristol + Bath Creative R+D ( which aims to raise the bar for the creative industries in the region and also on the UKRI programme My World ( on a research project called Fair Creative Economies, which looks at new economic models for the creative industries. 

More generally I work in the Creative Economies Lab (CEL - which is part of the Digital Cultures Research Centre (DCRC - within UWE.

CEL's research themes are: Developing Creative Places and Spaces; Understanding Cultural Ecologies; Supporting Resilience in Creative Businesses; Exploring future economic models for creativity. We also specialise in supporting R&D and innovation in the creative sector. In DCRC our themes are Creative Economies; Evolving Media; Screen Industries / Screen Cultures; and Restorative Futures.

From 2018-20 I worked on UWE's well-respected South West Creative Technology Network (SWCTN), which supported creative technologists across the South West. SWCTN ran funded research and prototype programmes, supporting thinkers and makers to do what they loved and create new work and businesses. In 2020-21 was seconded to Watershed to produce the Data R+D strand of the programme:

After an MA in human rights theory & practice,  I spent 10 years working as a documentary filmmaker specialising in oral history, worked in feature film development, and was for three years CEO of a film-based modern slavery charity. I'm interested in how creative people dream up new ways of working, producing and leading, and how develop themselves and their teams and drive meaningful social change that gives us a more hopeful future. Contact me if any of the above rings a bell.

Area of expertise

Creative Industries and Economies, Creative Practice, Artist support, Creative Producing, Project Management, Knowledge Exchange, Interdisciplinary working and collaboration; Creative Technology; Partnerships, Leadership.


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