Call for DING Innovation Fellows
Innovation School

Event Type:

Off-site event


GSA Innovation School


18 Jan 2018 - 31 Jan 2018
Thu - Wed, -



DING Innovation Fellows
Cash for Creative Pioneers

Call for DING Innovation Fellows

Event info

DING Innovation Fellows - Cash for Creative Pioneers

What is DING? (Design Innovation for New Growth)

DING is an 18 month project follow-on-funding project from Design in Action, funded by the Arts and Humantities Research Council, delivering design innovation as a strategy for growth in the Highlands and Islands creative economy. Our discipline – Design Innovation – addresses complex challenges through new design practices and bespoke community engagement. We seek to create and design preferable futures that will lead to collective wellbeing and sustainable growth for Scotland. The development and expression of collaborative creativity is our core research domain and expertise.

DING’s stance on supporting growth for the creative economy is one that looks beyond economic growth to include more qualitative forms of growth that aim to better consider the interests of creative practice. These include network growth through new and enriched communities of practice, knowledge growth through new and enriched forms of practice, value growth through new and enriched products, services and experiences, and market growth through new and enriched audiences and communication.

In October 2017 we delivered three DING Studios around innovation challenges co-developed with stakeholders in craft, Orkney festivals, and creative practice in Shetland. These creative workshops gathered practitioners and experts to collaborate on: collective challenges, innovation approaches, mapping the networks around key challenges and future trajectories for individual and collective growth.

What are the DING Innovation Fellows?

Following our DING Studio sessions, one of our strongest learnings was people lacking the time and resource to engage with the challenges they shared. As a result, we are directing our remaining funding towards individuals in the Highlands and Islands to support innovative projects for creative growth.

Applications are invited for up to 6 Innovation Fellowships from The Glasgow School of Art, providing up to £2500 each for time and expenses for creative pioneers to develop their practice, business or community of practice across the H&I creative economy. Design innovation support can be available from The Glasgow School of Art, if required.

The £2500 award is expected to pay towards:

  • time (no more than £200 per day)
  • expenses (e.g. travel, accommodation, subsistence, etc.)
  • materials (depending on project, but should only be minority of budget)

While we are welcoming applications from individuals to receive the fellowships, these can be used in order to support collaborative work.

Who can apply?

Although we have specifically engaged with Craft, Orkney and Shetland so far, these fellowships are open to all regions, sectors and practitioners operating in the Highland and Islands creative economy. Applications are particularly welcome from those exploring ideas for future heritage, such as in craft, textiles, music and art, as well as in current and emerging sectors that could contribute to the future heritage of the region, such as digital, screen and media. This call is also open to projects developing collaborative or cultural initiatives, such as festivals, collectives and shared assets developing ideas for future heritage.

Successful applicants for the fellowships must fulfill the following criteria:

  • be working in the Highlands and Islands region of Scotland
  • demonstrate experience in practice within the H&I creative economy
  • demonstrate the growth or innovation potential of their project proposal
  • demonstrate why this source of funding for innovation is appropriate for your project
  • demonstrate why you are the appropriate person for receiving such funding

How do I apply?

To apply for this unique opportunity please send the following to Michael Johnson (m.johnson@gsa.ac.uk):

  • 1 page CV with contact details, practice and experience
  • Up to 5 images of your work or web links (max. 5MB, only if appropriate)
  • A completed DING Innovation Fellow Application Form, which includes an outline of your proposal (500 words), benefits to you, your practice and/or community of practice (500 words), expected outcomes from your proposal (250 words), and an indicative budget covering up to £2500 (250 words)

The deadline for applications is January 31st 2018, when an expert panel will review and appoint fellows (without feedback) by Feb 14th 2018. Funds are contingent on completing the proposed work by May 31st 2018 and the fellow contributing to a final showcase at XpoNorth in Inverness, 27-28 June 2018.

We encourage prospective applicants to get in touch with Dr Michael Pierre Johnson at m.johnson@gsa.ac.uk to best position their project proposals