Dr Michael Eades

Contact details

Dr Michael Eades
Cultural Contexts Research Fellow and Public Engagement Manager
School of Advanced Study
School of Advanced Study, University of London, Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU
+44 (0)20 7862 8693
Email address:

Research Summary and Profile

Research interests:
Culture, English Literature
Research keywords:
Cultural and Literary Theory; Public Engagement; Arts and Health
England, United Kingdom
Summary of research interests and expertise:

I am the School of Advanced Study’s Public Engagement Manager and Cultural Contexts Research Fellow. The main part of my job lies in overseeing public engagement activity within the School, initiating cultural partnerships and projects, and managing and curating programming for the School’s flagship national forum for public engagement: the Being Human festival of the humanities.

As a scholar, my research lies on the intersection of literary and cultural studies. Since completing my PhD in 2012 my work has generally been project based and collaborative, and conducted in ‘real world’ contexts. I have worked with arts and health initiatives in Nottingham and London, and between 2013-2014 I completed the AHRC-funded project Bloomsbury Festival in a Box: engaging socially isolated people with dementia. This was part of the AHRC’s Cultural Value project, and resulted in a year-round cultural engagement initative run by the Bloomsbury Festival (ongoing as of 2018). 

I would be very happy to hear from any cultural practitioners, community groups, institutions, etcetera, who may want to explore possibilities for collaborations with the School of Advanced Study for the Being Human festival or any other projects.


Publication Details

Related publications/articles:

Date Details
20-Jul-2016 ‘Festival in a Box’: Development and qualitative evaluation of an outreach programme to engage socially isolated people with dementia

Journal articles

25-Jun-2015 Bloomsbury Festival in a Box: engaging socially isolated people with dementia. Final Report.

Research aids

 Final project report to AHRC

27-Jul-2013 Arts on Prescription: a qualitative longitudinal outcomes study

Journal articles

Research Projects & Supervisions

Research projects:

Bloomsbury Festival in a Box: engaging socially isolated people with dementia

Between August 2013 and May 2014 I was PI on the AHRC-funded research project Bloomsbury Festival in a Box: engaging socially isolated people with dementia. This project researched, implemented and analysed a pilot scheme for engaging people with dementia in the arts. Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) as part of the two-year Cultural Value Project, the project was a collaboration between the School of Advanced Study, University of London, University College London, the Bloomsbury Festival, and Age UK Camden.

At its core, the project sought to create a miniature and peripatetic version of the Bloomsbury Festival–an arts festival based in central London–that would be tailored to the needs of people living with dementia and would allow them to share insights into their lives in the area. ‘Archives’ of the engagement process were collected for each participant, and their contents analysed via a multi-disciplinary narrative research framework.

Relevant Events

Related events:

Date Details
01-Feb-2017 Being Human festival of the humanities

My current focus of activity is curating and managing Being Human – the UK’s only national festival of the humanities. I helped establish this festival in 2014, and it now takes place annually at venues across the UK. In 2016 the Being Human featured over 250 events in 45 towns and cities across the UK, organised by over 70 universities and research organisations. 

01-Sep-2015 Festival in a Box: Archives

Exhibition at the Leeds College of Art displaying research outputs and orginal artworks developed as part of the 'Bloomsbury Festival in a Box' project. The exhibition was aimed primarily at stucdents and practitioners at the start of their careers and was seen by around 2,000 people in autumn/winter 2015. 

01-May-2014 Festival in a Box: sharing knowledge on dementia and the arts

Project dissemintaion/knowledge share day for the Bloomsbury Festival in a Box Project . The day provided an environment in which the lessons learned from our project could be contextualised in relation to the broader landscape of arts and health projects working with people with dementia. Podcasts of talks from the day are available here: https://festivalinabox.blogs.sas.ac.uk/outputs/


23-Oct-2013 Ministry of Communication

Curatorial project at the School of Advanced Study funded by the AHRC’s Cultural Engagement Fund Pilot Scheme. For this project I curated a programme of events and original art commissions for the Bloomsbury Festival in October 2013. The project was designed to act as a catalyst for public engagement activity in the University of London, and to help the School of Advanced Study to reassess its place in relation to the cultures, histories and communities of its immediate civic milieu. The programme featured speakers including Will Self, Iain Sinclair, Andrew Motion and Ruth Padel, contributions from across the School's research institutes, and four original art commissions - one funded by an additional grant from the Arts Council of England. Outputs are archived here: www.michaeleades.net/2013/10/02/ministry-of-communication-bloomsbury-festival-2013/

Other editing/publishing activities:

Date Details
2018 Tensions Between the Everyday and the Extraordinary

 Article for Arts Professional 

2017 Being Human and the British Academy

Invited guest blog for the British Academy 

2016 Kindred Spirits? University/ cultural partnerships.

 Article for Arts Professional

2016 Still Invited to the Party?

 Article for Arts Professional

2014 Being Human: A new forum for engagement with the humanities

Guest blog for the National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement. 

Consultancy & Media
Available for consultancy:
Media experience:
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