Tag Archives: birmingham city university

Beyond the Campus

What role does Higher Education play in creating platforms, spaces and networks for creative arts and the creative industries? This question was the topic for the third workshop in a series of events, Beyond the Campus organised by Dr Roberta Comunian and Dr Abigail Gilmore and hosted by my colleague Dr Paul Long on Wednesday 6th November 2013.

The workshop focused on collaborations, networks and spaces shared by creative industries and higher education exploring both formal arrangements and practices as well as informal  networks and shared activities. Different spaces and networks were discussed including a keynote talk from Sebastian Olma challenging us to re-think the nature of work and the environments conducive to current working practices. Olma’s work is based on his study of serendipity as a crucial ingredient in innovative and entrepreneurial models of work, discussed previously in this blog.

My own contribution was a study of Birmingham’s creative milieu and how it can act as a space for students in ‘becoming’ a creative industries professional.  My research suggests that an opportunity to interact with the local creative industries community can offer an environment for experimentation in preparing for the realities of creative industries work.

I argue that by engaging in a creative industries milieu, characterized by its networks, relationships, key individuals and spaces (on and offline), students experience the realities of cultural work. Some students contribute to the local dynamic, establishing relationships which last well beyond their studies. But the process of immersing oneself requires cultural and social capital, and, as a student, is by no means easy. The research highlights some of the challenges through my interviews with international students and networks such as Birmingham’s Social Media Cafe. I suggest that a focus on encouraging interaction to explore the realities of creative work leaves little room for contesting or disrupting the status quo. A lack of critical reflection could be dangerous for creative industries students entering what is often described by academics as insecure and precarious work.

I hope that as part of the Beyond the Campus research, some of these challenges will be further developed.

My presentation slides:

Enterprise Stories

There are lots of stories about successful entrepreneurs but fewer examples of the challenges of entrepreneurship, particularly from the cultural and media industries. My colleague, Nayan Patel and I have been working with some students at Birmingham City University (BCU) to investigate enterprise from the student perspective. On Friday 13th we will present our project at the International Enterprise Educators Conference (IEEC).

Continue reading Enterprise Stories

Alumni of the Year: Daniella Genas

Copngratulations to Daniella Genas who is to be honoured at the Birmingham City University awards ceremony today, as alumni of the year.

Daniella is a frequent guest speaker on the MA Media and Creative Enterprise and we will welcome her again in a few week’s time.

A year ago, I interviewed her for this blog. Daniella  talked about her enterprise, her motivation and her plans for the future.


Tips for working in the media: listen, look and learn!

Dominika Jankowska discusses her work and offers advice for anyone starting a career in the media.

After graduating from the MA Media & Creative Enterprise course Dominika has been working with digital marketing agencies and running her own marketing agency, Cinnamon Leaf. Her day-to-day activities range from copy writing web content, writing articles, SEO (both on and off-site), blogging, quality link-building, project management and managing social media campaigns.


One day I could be working on a small campaign for a local SME, another day I could be involved in a ‘giant’ project for a well-known corporation. Variety is the spice of life, as they say! Continue reading Tips for working in the media: listen, look and learn!

What is entrepreneurship in the creative, media and cultural industries?

This blog will try to explore the nature of entrepreneurial work for those working in small businesses, as freelancers and social entrepreneurs.

I will collect and publish the stories and real life experiences of  entrepreneurial individuals in the creative, media and cultural industries. This will include advice, anecdotes and the challenges they encounter.