Care for the Future

Theme overview

Introduction

‘Care for the Future: Thinking Forward through the Past’ affords an opportunity for researchers in the arts and humanities to generate new novel understandings of the relationship between the past and the future, and the challenges and opportunities of the present through a temporally-inflected lens.

Importantly, it offers academic researchers in these fields the opportunity to facilitate and activate collaborations with partners including those outside higher education institutions in the cultural and creative sectors both in the UK and internationally.

We also have a University of Exeter Care for the Future website which has detail on current award holders, planned Care for the Future activity and is kept up to date with social media activity.

Core elements

There are a number of core elements that are relevant to Care for the Future, such as an exploration of the values and beliefs of individuals, communities, and institutions. These include questions around what is meaningful about continuity and change, and the role that narratives, experiences, visualisations, performances, and stories have to play in these processes.

Issues around understanding modes of cultural learning and intergenerational equity, as well as questions relating to authority, ownership and justice within and across time, may help inform understanding of current and future global challenges faced by society today.

Technological development, alternative lifestyle movements, and the nature of ideological and philosophical, ethical and creative, historicised and imagined perspectives jostle for attention and require a diversity of approaches and disciplinary engagements for the theme to reach its full potential.

The relationship with other strategic programmes and themes

Research funded under the Care for the Future theme will explore new areas and will build upon existing research, including that funded under previous AHRC-funded initiatives such as the Landscape and Environment, Science and Heritage, and the Museums and Galleries research programmes.

Care for the Future will also engage with current strategic and cross-Council initiatives including Connected Communities and Living with Environmental Change.

However, Care for the Future also offers an opportunity to think beyond the parameters of these existing programmes. While individual projects may seek to build on earlier work, Care for the Future will further such engagements in distinctive ways, and engage in complementing the AHRC’s other emerging themes: Digital Transformations, Science in Culture and Translating Cultures.

Full details on the Care for the Future Theme can be found in the specification document below.

Care for the Future Specification (PDF, 165KB)

Theme delivery

Potential sites of engagement

The theme encompasses questions around what is meaningful about continuity and change. We are not, however, seeking to provide a prescriptive description. The potential sites of engagement outlined below not only overlap and intersect: they are designed to stimulate researchers to come forward with their own perspectives and priorities for investigation. Work that places these elements into international and comparative cultural contexts is particularly welcomed, alongside projects working in partnership with non-HEIs in the co-production of new knowledge and ideas.

Potential sites of engagement:

  • Questions of temporality and history
  • Inter- and cross-generational communication, justice and exchange
  • Trauma, conflict and memory: transitions to new futures
  • Environmental change and sustainability
  • Cultural notions of the future

We are not providing a prescriptive description of these themes. The example locations for questions relating to these broad issues are provided in the Care for the Future specification document and are designed to problematise the topics and stimulate researchers to come forward with their own perspectives and priorities for investigation. Work that places these core elements into international and comparative cultural contexts is particularly welcomed, alongside projects working in partnership with non-HEIs in the co-production of new knowledge and ideas.

Proposals highlighting the Care for the Future theme must demonstrate a clear arts and humanities research approach. Disciplines across the whole range of the AHRC’s subject remit are encouraged under the theme. We recognise that each subject area can bring its own distinctive intellectual expertise to the theme, and that collaboration across disciplines (inside and outside the arts and humanities) can add strength and diversity to the capability and capacity of the research generated.

The Advisory Group was established to assist with the further development of this theme.

Further information on the type of activities that can be supported can be found on the Funding Opportunities Page.

Researchers interested in the community dimension of the theme may also be interested in planned activities under the Connected Communities Programme.

Contacts

Press enquiries

For press enquiries please use:
Telephone: 01793 41 6000
Email: communications@ahrc.ac.uk

General enquiries

For general enquiries please use:
Telephone: 01793 41 6000
Email: enquiries@ahrc.ac.uk