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Research & Knowledge Exchange

Welcome to Research & Knowledge Exchange at RCS

Watch Head of Research & Knowledge Exchange (RKE), Stephen Broad, introduce the RKE department at RCS and explain the different strands of our work.

Research at RCS

Bethany Whiteside stands opposite a man in a ballet class

Research at the Conservatoire is about inspiring innovative directions for our art forms, fresh insights into their processes and practices, and new perspectives on their role in our economies, cultures and ecologies.

Our research is characterised by two ‘I’s’ — interdisciplinarity and impact — which are evidenced across the range of our work, and underpin the way we support research. We create world-leading and internationally excellent research and pursue outcomes that include new artworks and performances, exhibitions, recordings and writing.

There are two main strands of activity:

  • Artistic Research (Practice Research or Research in-and-through the arts)
  • The Performing Arts in Society

Within these strands, there are clusters around New Work and Improvisation; Transdisciplinary Artistic Research; Art in the Anthropocene; Health and Wellbeing; and Performing Arts Education.

Knowlege Exchange

The aim of Knowledge Exchange (or KE) is to develop the Conservatoire’s relationship with the wider world.

It’s a new expression for an old idea: that the work and expertise of Conservatoire staff is there to be used, to have an impact, but also to be shaped by the needs and priorities of the diverse communities of which the Conservatoire is a part. KE at the Conservatoire reflects a basic artistic impetus: to make a difference.

The Research and KE department (also known as the ‘Exchange’) has three main functions:

  • To lead research and KE across the Conservatoire — to offer strategic direction and to lead by example, collaborating with others and creating work with lasting impact. By pursuing excellent research and KE projects through practice-led methodologies, we aspire to create world-leading research in and through the performing arts.
  • To support and inspire research and KE across the Conservatoire, helping staff to pursue their own projects with targeted awards, mentoring and training.
  • To direct the Conservatoire’s distinctive doctoral programmes over a range of disciplines and interdisciplines, working in collaboration with our validating partner for research degrees, the University of St Andrews, and other members of the Scottish Graduate School of the Arts and Humanities (SGSAH) AHRC Doctoral Training Partnership.

More about Knowledge Exchange at RCS

A individual is drawing on a board at SHIFT.

Meet the Staff

The Exchange is led by Professor Stephen Broad and supported by a team of lecturers and researchers:

  • Professor Stephen Broad

    Head of Research & Knowledge Exchange

  • Dr. Laura Bissell

    Athenaeum Research Fellow, Lecturer in Research and Contemporary Performance Practice

  • Dr. Emily Doolittle

    Athenaeum Research Fellow

  • Dr Rachel Drury

    Co-Programme Leader MA Psychology in the Arts (Music)

  • Stephanie Edwards

    Research and Knowledge Exchange Development Officer

  • Dr Fabrice Fitch

    Research Fellow

  • Professor Laura Gonzales

    Athenaeum Research Fellow

  • Dr Sarah Hopfinger

    Research Lecturer

  • Roy Howat

    Senior Research Fellow

  • Deborah Keogh

    Knowledge Exchange Manager

  • Dr Stuart MacRae

    Research Fellow

  • Dr Karen McAuley


  • Dr Jill Morgan

    Co-Programme Leader MA Psychology in the Arts (Music)

  • Professor Arnold Myers

    Senior Research Fellow

  • Dr Ben Redman

    Research Development Officer, Lecturer in Learning and Teaching in the Performing Arts

  • Pete Sykes

    Research and Knowledge Exchange Administrator

  • Dr Bethany Whiteside

    Research Lecturer and Doctoral Degrees Co-ordinator

  • Gallia Young

    Knowledge Exchange Administrator

More about RKE