HEartS Follow On: Enhancing the Future of Creative Health and the Health of Creative Professionals

Lead Research Organisation: Royal College of Music
Department Name: Research


HEartS Policy is led by the Centre for Performance Science, a partnership of the Royal College of Music and Imperial College London. It leverages the knowledge produced during two previous AHRC funded projects; The Health, Economic and Social impact of the ARTs (HEartS) project (AHRC 2018-21, AH/P005888/1), and HEartS Professional (AHRC 2019-22, AH/V013874/1), alongside the key industry partners. Three work packages (WPs) are themed around different findings, with tailored insights of our findings adapted to the needs of different audiences.

WP1, Everyday HEarts: WP1 will comprise the development of a series of short, animated films targeting a public audience, highlighting key research findings on how arts and cultural engagement supports health and wellbeing, focused on the outcomes of HEartS. 90 second 'bitesize' animated films will give the lay public a direct and accessible route through which they can engage with knowledge that will enable them to enhance their practises to best support health and wellbeing. These animations will be complemented by a research report and educational resource pack, highlighting the key findings of the HEartS research. Using the same themes as the animated films, this pack will be oriented towards educators and aimed at integrating HEartS findings within personal, social, and health education. A primary objective of this resource is to support the use of the animations within schools as a tool for communicating the value of the arts for mental health and quality of life.

WP2, HEartS in Health and Practice: WP2 will comprise the development of a podcast series (comprised of eight, thirty-minute episodes) split into two parts: WP2a, HEartS for Health and WP2b, HEartS in Practice. These podcasts will consist of researchers and practitioners in conversation with (i) health and clinical workers (such as GPs, mental health and community practitioners) exploring how HEartS practices can be more effectively implemented in practice, and (ii) discussion on the health of creative professionals, drawing more explicitly on the findings of HEartS Professional. Both sets of podcasts will be accompanied by policy briefs targeting both government but also organisational and educational policy.

WP3, HEartS Summit: WP3 will develop a lasting impact for the findings of HEartS through the HEartS Summit. This two-day event brings together our project partners and other relevant stakeholders to (a) explore the interlinked outcomes of creative health and the future health of the creative workforce, and (b) collaboratively develop strategies for action that will cement project findings within policy and practice.

This project will serve to maximise the impact of HEartS and HEartS Professional, extending its findings to both more diverse and targeted audiences, and through exchange with our knowledge partners extending well beyond unidirectional dissemination activity. Our work packages seek to maximise the accessibility of our research insights, and with the close collaboration of our partners, to enhance the social, economic and policy impact of the work beyond the lifespan of the project. In particular, tailored activities within each of the work packages will ensure that key messages are not just shared but presented alongside strategies to support long term change. Overall, the distinctive interlinked perspective of HEartS Follow On, combining the future of creative health alongside the health of creative professionals, will both build pathways for the integration of creative health into education, policy, and artistic practice, while also enhancing the sustainability and flourishing of the arts and cultural industries.


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