Cultural and heritage locations like theatres, museums, castles and stately homes increasingly use digital technology in the development, preservation and delivery of visitor experiences.
For example, visitors to the Science Museum in London can immerse themselves in a virtual reality experience by returning to Earth from space in the pilot's seat of a Soyuz Capsule; visitors to buildings managed by Historic England can view 3D reconstructions of old buildings to see what they might have looked like throughout history.
The use of digital technology is inescapable and new audiences have grown up with digital experiences, so expect digital enhancement during their visits. Organisations in the cultural and heritage sectors need to consider how they can implement digital technology and the benefits of implementation.
Our research covers the following topics
- Digital heritage
- Digital humanities
- Digital museums
- Museum technology
- Digital culture
- Digital cultural heritage
Methods and facilities
Partnerships and funders
Our research is used by cultural organisations to engage with current and potential visitors through digital innovation. Our partners include the Royal Shakespeare Company, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Mary Rose Museum, Worthing Museum and Art Gallery, and the New Theatre Royal.
Our research has been funded by Innovate UK, the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and the British Academy.
- We're working with the Royal Shakespeare Company on the Magic Leap programme, exploring how performance is brought to life using spatial computing that detects and responds to the environment, blending the real-world with the digital.
- We worked with the Mary Rose Museum to create a 3D visualisation of the ship's figurehead by piecing together shadow photographs and coordinate data. The 3D image of the figurehead can now be seen by visitors to the museum in Portsmouth's Historic Dockyard.
- Our virtual reality research contributed to a BAFTA White Paper titled 'Virtual Reality In Entertainment – The State Of The Industry'. This research explored the features, benefits and limitations of different forms of virtual and augmented reality. We looked at current psychological and physical risks, the significance of its value, and best-practice for entertainment and the mission of BAFTA. This research was used to inform the new BAFTA VR committee on whether they should create a new awards programme for VR. They decided to integrate VR into existing awards programmes.
- Always Moving: the new London Symphony Orchestra visual identity
- Exposing the sacred monumentality in Ugarit: remodelling the Temple of Baal
Discover our areas of expertise
We're examining the theory, psychology and development of video games and contributing to the design, development and release of games.
We're exploring how virtual reality (VR) can improve patient's physical and psychological rehabilitation, and developing VR simulations for a range healthcare applications.
We're investigating music and sound and creating new tools to enhance performance and creativity.
We're exploring the changing relationship between users and technology to develop new and better experiences for users.
Interested in a PhD in Digital & Creative Technologies?
Browse our postgraduate research degrees – including PhDs and MPhils – at our Digital & Creative Technologies postgraduate research degrees page.