Research Commission – Storytelling Ecosystem and Tools – UAL Careers

Research Commission – Storytelling Ecosystem and Tools

Applying for Research Commission – Storytelling Ecosystem and Tools

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Vacancy Id: 9792

College / Service: Social Purpose

Location: Hybrid – UAL High Holborn/Home

Salary: The total available budget for this study is £9,999 including VAT

Contract: Fixed Term

Hours: Hourly paid – N/A hours per week

Apply by: 24 May 2023 at 16:00


Please read through our FAQs page before applying


The opportunity

Research Commission

Storytelling for Change: the Ecosystem and the Tools


UAL’s AKO Storytelling Institute is commissioning consultant(s)/researcher to identify and map the research being done in storytelling-for-change inside and outside of academia.

We’re looking at who is doing the research, and what types of research is being created (for example, white papers, reports, tools, frameworks, insights and methodologies for practical use etc), and for which audiences.

Decades of work have already gone into developing tools, frameworks and insights for storytellers. The documentary sector has developed sophisticated impact production tools, the communications sector invested into insights across topics, and the narrative change learning tools are growing.

We’d expect you to draw from these and expand mapping to other sectors.

Other potential industries include: campaigning, funders, festivals, distributors, narrative change, strategic communications, creative industries (including arts, media, film, audio, video, documentary, TV, journalism, games, stunts, graphic comics, immersive, interactive, fiction, performance, installation, arts, photography), etc. The research plan will need to identify and prioritise areas for study.

It is expected that the study specifically will look at these areas:


  • What tools are out there for campaigners, artists and media practitioners who are using storytelling for change (frameworks, field guides, toolkits, white papers, journals). We'd like you to produce both a typology of types of research and tools that are being provided, as well as the key resources available.
  • Identify commonalities and differences of sector research. For example, perhaps campaigning focuses on audience insights whilst documentary more on impact distribution? Produce a diagram of these types of research showing overlaps in types of research and sector.
  • Analyse the volume/investment of different types of research provided. Are there significantly more evaluation tools compared to narrative change insights? Are there gaps where more could be invested?
  • What are the evaluation tools used to make this case?


  • Who is doing this research/providing these tools? Which industries and sectors are involved? We’d like a map like this.
  • Where geographically are these different types of research being done?
  • how much cross over and interaction is there across different sectors?


  • Who is this research being provided for? Who is the audience? Is it campaigners? Mainly media folk? Artists?
  • How are the tools disseminated to reach them. Are audiences siloed into different types of research?


  • From this scoping exercise, what role and what research is most valuable for AKOSI to take on?
  • What are the recommendations for the first 3 years of research?

Details of scope

  • We are looking for work done both inside and outside academia.
  • Geography: Europe, UK, US, Canada, Australia.
  • Storytelling for us is broad. Storytelling exists as arts, media and campaign assets, as well as the symbolic stories (or narratives) used by society.
  • The sectors we have seen work done in this area includes campaigning, funders, festivals, distributors, narrative change, creative industries. There may be more.
  • Types of research include academic papers, audience insights, narrative change papers, evaluation tools, distribution and impact field guides, impact media models, impact workbooks and more.

We understand this is a wide and potentially highly expansive brief, but that we view this as an important first step for the AKO Storytelling Institute to start to collate and gather evidence and examples in this space and we’d welcome a conversation to discuss the boundaries/parameters.

Output Timeline

  • A detailed study plan June 2023.
  • A draft report outlining findings by August 2023.
  • A final report by end-September 2023.

About you

How to submit a proposal for this work

Please email the following information to by 5pm Wednesday 24 May 2023.

  • The CV for any team members who will carry out this work.
  • No more than four sides of A4 detailingWhy you are qualified to conduct this study, including examples of relevant work carried out.
  • An outline of the methodology you propose to employ.
  • An outline budget (if appropriate).
  • Two references.

If your written proposal is successful you will be invited to discuss your proposal.


If you have any queries about this role or need any reasonable adjustments for your application, please contact AKO Storytelling Institute via email at

We are UAL

The AKO Storytelling Institute works at the intersection of storytelling and social change. As a part of University of the Arts London’s new Social Purpose Group, our mission is to enable storytellers and campaigners to make a greater social impact through their work. Through interdisciplinary experimentation and collaboration, we develop evidence-based approaches to the theory and practice of storytelling-for-change.

Our research programme is oriented towards fostering real world change through the development of theories, methods and toolkits for storytellers and campaigners to use further afield. We share what we find through public events and media such as podcasts, blogs and videos, as well as traditional academic research outputs.

Find out more

Our culture

UAL is committed to creating diverse and inclusive environments for all staff and students to work and learn – a university where we can be ourselves and reach our full potential. We offer a range of family friendly, inclusive employment policies, flexible working arrangements and Staff Support Networks. We welcome applicants from diverse backgrounds, including race, disability, age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion and belief, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, and caring responsibility.

Vacancy Id: 9792

College / Service: Social Purpose

Location: Hybrid – UAL High Holborn/Home

Salary: The total available budget for this study is £9,999 including VAT

Contract: Fixed Term

Hours: Hourly paid – N/A hours per week

Apply by: 24 May 2023 at 16:00


Please read through our FAQs page before applying

Find out more

Candy floss at Staff Summer Party, Chelsea College of Arts | Copyright: University of the Arts London
Animation still | Credit: Alexandra Kostyuk
Lucie Brosson writing notes | Photographer: Alys Tomlinson