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Crafts Council

Home // What We Do // Research and Policy: Overview
  • Photo: Sophie Mutevelian

Research and Policy: Overview

Our research and advocacy programme informs our creative programming and policy advice

We constantly gather information from across the craft sector and creative industries.

This enables us to provide accessible and robust evidence which demonstrates powerfully the value of craft from heritage to contemporary, from traditional to innovative.

If you would like to stay up to date with Research and Policy developments please sign up to the newsletter and tick the box to receive content for researchers.


We collect intelligence in order to chart and anticipate economic, social, cultural and political trends in craft.

We regularly commission and publish research in order to make recommendations to government and partners and to advocate the value of contemporary craft more widely.

Alongside these larger pieces of research we regularly publish shorter research reports on topics relevant to the sector. All our research is made freely available and disseminated widely in order to facilitate a strong and consistent sector dialogue underpinned by evidence-based research.

Examples of commissioned research include:

  • Who Makes? An Analysis of People Working in Craft Occupations – an analysis of the demographic characteristics of people working in craft occupations.
  • Innovation Through Craft: Opportunities for growth points to evidence that the UK is at risk of failing to take advantage of its expertise in craft.
  • Studying craft: trends in craft education and training, is the latest research commissioned by the Crafts Council and is a comprehensive examination of contemporary craft education in England.
  • Craft in an Age of Change, commissioned in partnership with Creative Scotland, Arts Council of Wales and Craft Northern Ireland, examines the place of craft in the creative economy and the working patterns of makers and other craft professionals across the UK. Craft in an Age of Change uses older data with an outdated methodology, now superseded by our 2014 report, Measuring the Craft Economy. 
  • Measuring the Craft Economy - Defining and measuring craft: report 3, Measuring the Craft Economy gives the fullest picture to date of the value and scale of craft’s contribution to the UK economy.

We also encourage and support other organisations to contribute to the field of craft research. We have active partnerships with a number of academic institutions and non-academic organisations and we actively welcome potential partnerships in this area.

Visit our Research Documents section to download any of our Research Reports, and Research Strategy section to view and download our stragegy.


We keep up to date with the cultural, economic, political and technological policies that affect the crafts sector and individual makers. 

Any changes to policies that we perceive to have immediate or long-term implications for the craft sector we record, share via our monthly Research and Policy Brief and make a formal response.

Craft and STEM at the House of Commons, 2011. Photo: Sophie Mutevelian