Outputs and Results
StoryTagging has three main project objectives:
- To collect and curate stories that celebrate northern cultural heritage
- To help the creative industry bring stories to life through products and works
- To creating a digital platform that increases the market reach of northern creative practitioners
Output: A digital platform serving SMEs, local communities and visitors
The main output from the project will be a digital platform (a website and both Apple and Android apps), to be released under the brand name 'Northword.' This will perform various functions:
• It will act as a repository for stories collected throughout the project and allow local communities to continue to collect and map stories after the project ends. The resulting back of traditional stories and lore will be a useful community resource.
• It will provide a promotional platform for SMEs, allowing them to market and sell products and works created through the project, as well as hosting a skills hub.
• It will enhance the experience of visitors to the regions, giving them access not only to the bank of stories and resulting products, but to other local and regional visitor information sites and a discussion board for each partner country.
The platform will be designed to allow communities and creative SMEs to continue to use it beyond the life of the project. It is based on a platform that has been developed and piloted by Robert Gordon University for a folklore trail in Orkney that can be found here.
Output: A repository of stories celebrating northern culture and heritage
The project will produce a repository of stories, presented in a range of multimedia formats, that celebrate the cultural and natural assets of northern locales. Partners will engage with museums, community groups and other cultural heritage organisations to gather up to 30 stories in each partner country. These will reflect the history and heritage, language, archaeology, landscape and folklore that make northern communities unique.
Each partner will then engage local storytellers to record up to 15 of these stories, in the indigenous language as well as English as appropriate. These stories will be mapped onto the digital platform, as close as possible to the location or settlement where the events took place. This repository will be an important cultural resource for participating communities, and the platform will be designed so that users can grow and develop the bank of stories after the project ends.
Output: New products and works ‘bringing stories to life’
5 creative industry SMEs in each country (8 in Scotland) will be invited to apply for support a to create a new product or work inspired by these stories. This will either take the form of product development training facilitated by project leads or, in some countries, the opportunity to apply for a small development grant. The possibilities are wide ranging: textiles, crafts, jewellery, art, music, film, photography, dance, theatre. These will celebrate northern culture and heritage as studies by Highlands and Islands Enterprise, an economic and community development agency in Scotland, has shown that products imbued with local provenance can lead to greater sales. These will be brought to market and be available to customers to purchase or access via the digital platform, along with information about the SME and links to the original story.
Output: A skills hub for creative industry SMEs
Experts in digital marketing at RGU will develop two sets of online resources to teach creative industry SMEs digital marketing skills and the effective use of data analytics, providing businesses with tools that will enable them to better understand their audience and increase their market reach. This will be hosted on the digital platform and backed up with a support mechanism of experts available to provide practical advice and feedback. The hub will also include training materials on how to use the platform to collect, curate and map stories, allowing SMEs and communities to continue to use and develop the resource after the project ends.
Output: A series of 'Bringing Stories to Life' events
Each partner country will organise a national 'Bringing Stories to Life' event at a venue somewhere in the NPA area. This will bring participating SMEs together to showcase their new products and works along with the stories that inspired them. These events will be publicised widely and provide a platform for businesses to promote themselves. The products created in partner countries will also be featured, demonstrating the transnationality of the project.
Output: A high-quality movie documenting the process
RGU will lead on the production of a high-quality documentary movie about the StoryTagging project and the creative practitioners involved in bringing stories to life. This will be led by Nicci Thomson, an award-winning movie maker and lecturer at RGU. This will help to promote the participating SMEs and celebrate the distinct culture and heritage of each Northern region.