Gemma San Cornelio and Toni Roig were at the Creative Citizens Conference in London, presenting their work on co-creativity and participatory practices.  The conference was devoted to re-think public engagement in digital culture and to critically examine the “participatory”  turn in current cultural policies and the role of the university in re-defining audiences as  “creative citizens” that are not in a “vacuum” , but part of active communities.  

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Creative Citizens is part of the RCUK/AHRC ‘Connected Connected Communities Programme’ that aims to combine the experience and creativity of ‘communities’ with the research and scholarship of academics. It operates with the assumption that such a combination will improve research quality and generate greater benefits for participating communities and the wider public. Is this the case? This workshop will present some initial observations on the CC programme from an ongoing meta-study as well as reflections from the case of the Creative Citizens research project. It will then encourage participants to explore a number of emerging questions together: Are the goals of academics and community organisations compatible? What is lost and gained in the new research relationships that are emerging? To what extent are these relationships furthering wider community benefit or focusing resources on a smaller group of core participants? How are these relationships reshaping relations between universities and communities of place and interest? Is this funding model the best way to value, support and draw upon citizen creativity?