What AHRC does

The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) funds world-class researchers in a wide range of arts and humanities areas, from philosophy and the creative industries to art conservation and product design.

Our research addresses some of society’s biggest challenges such as tackling modern slavery and understanding the ethical implications of artificial intelligence. It also drives growth in the creative economy, and reveals new stories from the national collections held in the UK’s world-renowned museums and galleries.

Our priorities

  • Contemporary challenges: analysing the present, and learning lessons from the past to shape a better future
  • Creative economy: research supporting the recovery and growth of the cultural and creative economy
  • Cultural assets: conserving, curating and maximising the impact of our museums, galleries, libraries and archives so our national collections are accessible to all
  • Discovering ourselves: supporting cutting-edge rigorous enquiry-led research with international impact that leads to new discoveries and helps us understand ourselves and the world.

Our funding

AHRC awards around £110 million of funding each year to researchers at higher education institutions including UK universities and independent research organisations such as the British Library, Tate, and Historic Environment Scotland.

Our funding is provided by the UK government through the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, via UK Research and Innovation, which brings together the UK’s nine leading academic and industrial funding councils, including AHRC.

Applications for funding are reviewed by AHRC’s Peer Review College, around 1,000 academics with expertise in areas of research relevant to each submission. AHRC funds around 300 research projects every year.

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Last updated: 7 December 2023

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