Snook are delighted to be partnering with Broadway’s Near Now to deliver a new programme called Know How for the cultural sector in the East Midlands.

Many arts organisations across the UK are facing public funding cuts and at the same time are expected to continue to increase or sustain revenues, secure new sources of income, become resilient, reach new audiences, utilise new technologies and innovate.

The Know How programme is designed to take cultural organisations on a journey that places design and digital thinking at the heart of what they do. Through the Know How process, we will support organisations to shape, refine and build a new offer enabled by digital technologies by connecting them with new ideas, tools and resources that leverage the know-how that already exists in their organisation.


The programme runs for six months and contains six core modules; think, develop, play, test, build and launch. Over these six months we will help organisations conceive new ideas, bring them to life and test their potential through prototypes before building and launching their concepts.

The programme is an amalgamation of the shared expertise and experience from previous projects by Broadway, Near Now and Snook. The basic framework for the programme looks to build on existing events in the cultural landscape like Hack Days, Startup weekends, etc and use these models as inspiration to deliver a large programme that has sustainable impact for the companies involved and the wider sector across the East Midlands.

Yesterday, Broadway opened its doors to the East Midlands cultural sector, universities, designers and developers and hosted a launch event to share the programme with those who have shown early interest.

After an impressive lunch in Broadway’s Mezz Bar, we filtered into the 130-seater Screen 2 and kicked things off. Steve Mapp, Chief Executive of Broadway began by introducing the organisation and detailing examples of ongoing work through their Near Now and Projector programmes, including the Near Now Fellowship and a new £100,000 film fund for the development of feature-length fiction and documentary films intended for cinema release.


To add to their abundance of ongoing work, Steve also announced that Broadway will soon undergo development work to create a number of new spaces to support their expanding range of programmes including a studio, an art, design and technology workshop, a library and a street facing retail unit all contained within the lower ground floor.

Having outlined Broadways ambitions and plans for the near future, Sarah followed Steve’s presentation with a bit about Snook, what Design + Digital looks like in the Cultural Sector, some case studies of great projects like Capture The Museum and an overview of the Know How Programme. Some of the slides below give a flavour to what we presented.



I’ve been fortunate enough to work on some outstanding projects in the cultural sector over the last few years including Festivals Design DNA, Geeks-In-Residence and Culture Shift. I recently wrote a piece for the Sync Tank on what I learned during my time as a geek and these learning’s are reflected in how this programme has taken shape.

This is an exciting time for the East Midlands Cultural Sector and those interested in design and digital in this space. With opportunities for collaboration through funded placements, linking in with HEI’s and designer/developer teams, plus a pot of funding at the end of the process, Know How and it’s participants have the chance to create some tangible and sustainable impact in the sector.

The first cohort of 20 organisations join us on this adventure from mid-July, with applications being accepted through the Know How website.  The deadline is June 20th, so if you’re thinking about getting involved or know someone that might be, then best get in quick.

Missed the event? Check out the Storify here.

Who’s behind Know How? Check us out below.

Got more questions, interested or want to find out more? Visit the Near Now website here, drop me a line or tweet me @_andyyoung.

One final ask, we’re trying to curate a list of the best design and digital work in the cultural sector. If you know of any projects, or people doing awesome work then tweet us at #KnowHow14 with examples.

Stay tuned, there is plenty more to come.

(Feature image courtesy of Ashley Bird)