Impact Advisory Board
The Impact Advisory Board aims to broaden the reach of our research and to gain insight from those working in fields connected with the media, arts and humanities locally and nationally.
Our research reaches into areas and fields that engage directly with the social challenges of our time. We share these challenges with partners, communities and organisations of all kinds, and can work collaboratively to find imaginative solutions, investigate questions, explore archives, analyse data, create new potentials. We are committed to knowledge exchange as a flow of ideas and possibilities, that may or may not always produce commercial benefits, but which always generates lived social and human value for all, and a sustained relationship with our partners.
The Impact Advisory Board consists of members working in relevant sectors (eg practitioners, libraries/archives, museums, galleries, festivals, publishers, journalists, broadcasters and filmmakers etc) who have close links with the School and the University.
Meeting twice yearly, the Board offers a valued perspective and insights on research projects and ideas with the potential for the development of impact and knowledge exchange, is interested in how we support the co-creation of projects, and extends potential connections with a range of external partners. The Board functions as a collaborative friend in the development of our impact and knowledge exchange strategy.
Founder of Afrori Books
An award-winning businesswoman, (British bookseller of the year 2023) entrepreneur, speaker and event manager, Carolynn Bain has taken Brighton by storm.
Her heart to see diversity in a city she loves dearly, and to change the narrative for so many black and brown children led her to create the award-winning bookshop Afrori Books in 2020, a store that specialises in books by black authors. Hoping to curate a short list of books by black authors in the summer of 2020, Carolynn created the Afrori Books website. Fast forward to present day, Afrori Books is the UK's largest supplier of books by Black authors, Brighton's first black-owned bookshop, and (most importantly) a hub and safe haven for black and brown people in East Sussex. Carolynn has featured as a pioneer on news channels like Sky, ITV, and the BBC, as well as creating Brighton's first Anti-Racist Kids Club (ARK), which she delivers to schools across Sussex. She runs workshops within the shop including relationship building and hair education.
Working closely with organisations across the country including social services, educations bodies, health trusts, charities and corporations, Carolynn has delivered talks, workshops for adults and young people. She regularly covers issues such as racism, feminism, entrepreneurship, publishing, equity, leadership and anti-racism.
Head of Music, Publishing & Design at Department for Culture, Media & Sport
Lizzie leads on Music, Publishing and Design policy within the Creative Industries directorate at the Department for Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS).
Lizzie’s role is to develop evidence-based advice to inform and support ministerial priorities across the creative sectors, working closely with industry and across government to understand the challenges and opportunities for socioeconomic growth. Prior to this role, Lizzie led on cultural diplomacy policy at DCMS, with a focus on Italy and the Gulf States. Lizzie’s interest in cultural policy developed through previous roles at the British Council, Science Museum, the V&A, English Heritage, the Venice Biennale and BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art. Her Masters in Art History and Museum Curating at the University of Sussex focused on the role of art in shaping UK national identity, with a curatorial placement at Tate Britain.
As a foster carer for children ages 5-18, Lizzie champions the role quality arts education and creative learning can play in developing a sense of belonging, self-worth and empowerment.
Topher Campbell is an award-winning artist and filmmaker. He is also an accomplished theatre director. His film credits include The Homecoming available on BFIplayer, Una Marson Our Lost Caribbean Voice for BBC, and the ground breaking Moments That Shaped Queer Black Britain for BET. Topher is a Sussex Alumni and a recipient of an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Sussex.
Executive Director of Phoenix Art Space
Lucy Day is the Executive Director at Phoenix Art Space, an arts charity based in the centre of Brighton housing 100+ artists’ studios, three exhibition spaces and a very active community engagement programme.
Prior to this Lucy was an independent curator, mentor, arts consultant and Founder Director of A Woman’s Place Projects, a contemporary arts organisation which takes equality as its starting point, exploring it creatively through exhibitions, projects and events.
She is Chair of Devonshire Collective/VOLT Gallery in Eastbourne, which recently became an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation, an alumna of the Clore Leadership Programme (Clore50 2017) and a former Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
Director of Engagement and Public Programmes at Brighton & Hove Museums
Ceryl Evans is Director of Engagement and Public Programmes for Brighton & Hove Museums.
Previously Director of the Capability Brown Festival, the first national project on historic landscapes, she headed Museums and Culture for Hackney during the Olympic period. She has worked as a heritage consultant in the UK and the Middle East, with clients including universities, Historic England, The Gardens Trust and The Globe theatre. Previously she ran a castle and hermit's cave in North Yorkshire, community outreach projects in South Yorkshire and set up a museum of a pub. She holds MAs in Medieval History and Museums and is a Wikipedia editor and trainer working to improve the quality of articles and the coverage of women on the fifth most visited website in the world.
Director and CEO of Ditchling Museum of Art + Craft
Steph has been Director since 2017, leading a programme of socially focussed initiatives working with community partners. With a practice based background in craft and visual arts, she is a curator, researcher and activist and has produced exhibitions with contemporary artists and craftspeople as well as using historic material culture to tell overlooked and lesser known stories.
Previously she was founder Director of Ideas Test, an Arts Council Creative People and Places project undertaking action research into cultural activity in an area of reported low engagement.
She holds an MA in Art History and is a Research Associate of the School of School of Media, Arts and Humanities at Sussex. She is currently a board member of Disability Arts Online.
Director CEO of Towner Eastbourne
Joe Hill has been Director of Towner Eastbourne since 2018. He has led an ambitious plan to re-vision the gallery, which has resulted in Towner being named as winner of Art Fund Museum of the Year 2020 and host for the 2023 Turner Prize. Prior to this role, Joe was Director of Focal Point Gallery in Southend since 2013. Whilst in Essex, Joe also led on the much-acclaimed Radical ESSEX research and place-making project.
Originally having trained as an artist, Joe has extensive experience working as a director, curator and project lead for visual arts organisations, public commissioning and directly with artists. This experience has been cultivated through working with other high-profile arts institutions including Camden Arts Centre and Firstsite and internationally as part of the Venice Biennale. Joe is co-chair of the South East Creative Economy Network (SECEN) as well as a Trustee of The Tetley in Leeds and Devonshire Collective in Eastbourne.
Founder/Director of Urbanflo Creative
Jenni Lewin-Turner is the founding director of socially-engaged arts agency Urbanflo Creative, and has maintained a long portfolio career as an international creative producer, cultural broker, consultant, researcher and curator. Jenni is a PhD candidate at the Royal Central School of Speech & Drama researching the impact of media representation on cultural memory. Her qualifications include an MA in Cultural Leadership and an MA in Media Practice for Development and Social Change.
Jenni's international cultural initiatives include collaborations with partners based across the Caribbean, USA, Africa, and the UK. Her national remit is as a trustee of All England Dance and EDI consultant for a university group and a theatre franchise. Locally, in partnership with Brighton Pride, Brighton Fringe, Ironworks Studios and Pan-African Creative Exchange (PACE) she devised and produced 'Culture ConneX', a multi-disciplinary series of performances, visual art exhibitions, film screenings and career development masterclasses. The programme was developed to provide a unique platform for new and more diverse narratives, and also to promote inclusive practice and intercultural dialogue.
Amongst her other local commitments, Jenni serves on the boards of Brighton People's Theatre, Creative Future, Brighton Fringe, Screen & Film School Brighton (Inclusivity Action Group) and the Lovey Foundation (UK). She was also recently a consultant for the University of Sussex 'Black@Sussex' project, and at the helm of the Brighton & Hove City Council's 'Our Legacy' initiative which explored nuanced ways to reparatively reimagine and repurpose contested heritage.
Senior News Editor, BBC
Adam Lindsay leads teams delivering news bulletins for Radio 2, Radio 3, Radio 4, 5Live and 6Music, working closely with correspondents, reporters and editors around the world to create industry leading, impartial and incisive content. He has been heavily involved in the organisation's efforts to modernise its output to reach new and underserved audiences, and is one of 25 people chosen from over 900 applicants to be part of the BBC's first ever Accelerator leadership scheme to drive positive change over the coming years. Prior to joining the BBC, Adam worked at a number of other leading media outlets, including Sky News, RTE and IRN.
Founder/Director of Cogapp and Wired Sussex
Alex Morrison is the founder/director of Cogapp - originally in association with Cognitive Studies at the University of Sussex - this is a digital agency practice. They started working on Artificial Intelligence and Knowledge Engineering, and then on Interactive Multimedia, Online and Digital Publishing. They now have an international practice producing online systems for museums, archives, and libraries. Past and present clients include the National Gallery, the British Library, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, MoMA, etc.
Alex is also the founder/director of Wired Sussex. He collaborates with Dr Marisa Zanotti and others in Glitch Projects, exploring alternative models for archives. He is a previous trustee of Art UK, the organisation responsible for putting the UK's art collections online. He is an editor of The Elephant, a directory of sources for understanding the climate and environmental emergency. His academic background is in Mathematics and Philosophy.
Team Manager: Culture & Tourism at East Sussex County Council
Sally Staples MA is East Sussex County Council’s Team Manager for Culture and Tourism.
Sally specialises in creating the strategic environment which allows the cultural sector to flourish. Her involvement in the cultural sector has ranged from practitioner, facilitator, commissioner and writer to venue manager and performer. Her recent partnership projects include Create South East (regional business support programme), Turner Prize in Eastbourne, Culture East Sussex and the commissioning of workspace development tools. She represents East Sussex on the Sussex Visitor Economy Initiative and is a Board Member of Visit 1066 Country. She is an occasional contributor to Arts Professional and her previous roles include Head of Kent County Council Arts Development Unit, where she also managed the Kent Film Office, and co-Chair of the South East Creative Economy Network. She has a Masters in Writing from Sheffield Hallam University.
Owner of The Feminist Bookshop
Ruth Wainwright is the founder and owner of The Feminist Bookshop in Brighton - a bookshop, coffee shop and events space which advocates for intersectional feminism and seeks to promote the work of self-identifying female and non-binary writers.
Ruth also works with local charities and advocacy groups to champion their work in the community, hosting fundraisers for organisations including Survivors Network, Rise, Brighton Women’s Centre, Thousand 4 £1000 and Reclaim the Night Brighton. She is also a freelance economic consultant, specialising in monitoring and evaluation.
Head of Performance & Dance at Southbank Centre
Aaron Wright joined the Southbank Centre as Head of Performance in Spring 2023.
Aaron has extensive experience in commissioning and curating contemporary performing arts. Previously he was Artistic Director & CEO of Fierce, an Arts Council England NPO organisation in Birmingham (2016-2023). He curated three editions of the biennial international Fierce Festival working with a broad range of international artists and companies. Aaron was also a cultural consultant for the Birmingham 2022 Festival for which Fierce delivered a major public realm project Key to the City. Aaron also helped instigate the new English performing arts showcase: Horizon. Previously he was Programme Manager at the Live Art Development Agency, a trustee of Birmingham Contemporary Music Group and is alumnus of the first cohort of Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries. He has a BA and an MA from the University of Birmingham.