Professor Leila Jancovich

Professor Leila Jancovich


I worked for many years in the arts and festivals sector as a producer, researcher and policy maker before entering academia in 2007 where my research focus is on participation, power and decision making in the arts. As a result I have a strong commitment to knowledge exchange between academia, policy and practice which is demonstrated by my leadership of a knowledge exchange network on cultural participation (  

I am currently Principle Investigator for an AHRC research project called Cultural Participation: stories of success, histories of failure (failspace), which seeks to examine the benefits of the cultural sector better identifying, acknowledging and learning from failure.  In addition I am a Co-Investigator on the Cultural Value Centre, funded by AHRC, Arts Council England and the Paul Hamlyn Foundation which seeks to make academic research into the value of culture more useful and accessible.

I lead modules on cultural participation and cultural policy and supervise PhD candidates working across discipinary fields but with interests related to areas of policy, management and leadership.

Externally I advise on a number of national bodies including beng an assessor for UKRI and British Academcy funding and being a specifialist adivosr for ECORYS policy consultants.



  • Director of Research and Innovation

Research interests

My main research interests are in the field of cultural policy and participation, with a particular focus on the implications of policy on practice.  To this end I draw on work within the field of arts management but also public policy and political science. My own research, on which I have published widely, focuses on the implications of participatory governance and decision making on the cultural sector. I am currently Principle Investigator for an AHRC project which aims ot dsirupt current policy naratives by encouraging learning from failure.  My interests is not just what policy says but what it does and so my research takes a situated approach to looking at local policy contexts. I have researched and written about arts organisations and small towns in the North of England as well in international contexts such as European Capitals of Culture.  I supervise post doctoral students in the field of arts management and cultural policy but also on topics around festivals, placemaking and localism.

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>

Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for Cultural Policy
  • Audience, Engagement & Experience
  • Participation

Current postgraduate researchers

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>