Arts-Based Research

  • Biggs, Michael (PI)
  • Buchler, Daniela (CoI)
  • Stahl, Lars-Henrik (CoI)
  • Sandin, G. (CoI)

Project: Consultancy

Project Details


The project aims to develop criteria for identifying and evaluating the quality of so-called practice-based or arts-based research in the creative and cultural industries. Outcomes from the project are informing Swedish national research policy.

In 2004 the Swedish government financed the prestigious Sigtuna symposium in order to discuss fundamental issues to do with so-called practice-based or arts-based research. The motivation for the event was the proposal of a bill that would be presented to the Swedish parliament in October of that year and would enable the Research Council to amplify the scope of its research funding to include the academic production from the arts-based research sub-group. This government initiative responded to the development of this subject in the neighbouring countries, mainly the UK, and consequently to Sweden’s need to maintain its commercial and pedagogical competitiveness in the international academic context. The Swedish Secretary of Education attended the symposium and in 2005 government funding was made available through the Research Council for the creation of four Visiting Guest Professorship posts. These four posts were created so that international specialists could visit universities and research centres in Sweden in the 2006/7 academic year and share their research on arts-based research.

The Visiting Guest Professorship in architecture was awarded to Michael Biggs from the UK University of Hertfordshire. Biggs is internationally renowned for his activity in the area of arts-based research in art and design. On being invited as Visiting Guest Professor in the Universities of Lund, Stockholm and Götenberg, he proposed to use the opportunity to develop his research into the nature of arts-based research in art, architecture and design. This subject is of importance in UK for the purposes of research quality assessment; in the EU in response to the need for methodological clarity in funding applications in the cultural sector; and for national governments such as Sweden for the implementation of research funding and assessment strategies based on international models of experience and best-practice. Biggs has been in a long-standing collaboration with University of Lund, and been an advisor and visitor at a number of other Scandinavian universities in recent years, and on the basis of this experience he proposed to develop the philosophical and foundational issues around practice-based research as evidenced by practitioners in these universities.
Effective start/end date2/01/0631/12/12


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