Civic Strategy 2021-24

A better world, delivered locally


A Better World – delivered locally has been at the heart of our mission at Goldsmiths since our initial foundation in 1891 as a technical College to serve its local community in New Cross in the London Borough of Lewisham. Our values of promoting access and diversity and creating change, locally and globally underpin this civic mission. Goldsmiths is quite unique and distinctive within the UK higher education landscape. It is difficult to think of another university in the UK with the same mix of the arts, humanities, social sciences and computing – disciplines which increasingly work together at Goldsmiths to spark new ideas, approaches and innovative ways of working. Rooted in its local community and committed to equity, diversity and social and environmental justice, Goldsmiths has a reputation of challenging the norm, of creativity, of new ideas and concepts, as well as a strong social and humanistic approach to the challenges facing society.

Goldsmiths is also committed to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These 17 SDGs are a call for action by all countries to end poverty, improve health and education, reduce inequality, foster economic growth and tackle climate change. For universities like Goldsmiths, we recognise the role we play in delivering these goals through our teaching and learning, our research and innovation, and our leadership, locally, nationally and globally. Goldsmiths is also committed to delivering a comprehensive programme of actions that are embedded across all aspects of the College’s activities, in order to address climate change and make its operations sustainable. ensuring a series of measures in response to the climate emergency. These include actions linked to our civic mission and the delivery of positive benefits to our locality.

We are also rightly proud to be located in Lewisham, which is the 15th most ethnically diverse local authority in the country, the 2nd most diverse borough in London, with two out of every five residents are from a black or minority ethnic background, and the Borough is home to more than 75 nationalities. Our locality, together with the longstanding commitments of our staff and students who every year volunteer and work with our local community, as well as Goldsmiths’ own commitments to be a model employer, have shaped our thinking and approach. I look forward to our continued work with partners and stakeholders to take forward the vision and actions outlined in this strategy. Together we are aiming to help make our locality and region an even better and more inclusive place to live, work, create and learn.

Professor Frances Corner OBE

About Goldsmiths

We know that Goldsmiths is an important source of social, cultural and economic impact in its locality with some 10,000 students, 1,300 staff and an annual turnover of £126 million. As a leading arts, humanities and social science university, it produces the future leaders and talented individuals that are in demand from many of the fastest growing sectors in the UK, such as the creative industries and CreaTech where creativity meets technology. Its innovative research and knowledge exchange partnerships also inform growth and development locally, nationally and internationally. A recent external evaluation concluded that:

“Whether directly as an employer, through its relationships with local businesses, from the contribution of its students, the wider cultural impact of its activities, or the collaborative partnership role in local economic development, Goldsmiths brings significant positive benefits to its local community. These benefits are long established but are growing. Goldsmiths has a critical role to play in the future social, cultural and economic development of Lewisham Borough and of New Cross and Deptford in particular.”

The Local and Regional Impact of Goldsmiths, University of London, 2020, p.77

The table below summarises Goldsmiths’ economic impacts within the UK, London and Lewisham.

Summary Economic Impact







Direct 61.0 1,995 61.0 1,995 61.0 1,995
Indirect 20.0 410 9.2 191 3.1 64
Induced 11.5 244 9.6 204 1.5 32
Sub Total 92.5 2,609 80.0 2,350 65.6 2,051
Student Spend 41.5 886 38.5 822 14.4 307
Student Labour Market 8.8 436 8.8 436 1.6 81
Visitor Spend 1.2 53 1.1 48 0.4 18
Graduate Premium 192.6   67.8   8.3  
Sub Total 243.9 1,368 115.1 1,258 25.3 435
Total Impact 336.4 3,977 195.1 3,608 90.9 2,486

Given the College’s location in Lewisham – one of the most deprived areas in the UK – these impacts are of even greater significance. Lewisham is roughly equal in size to Newcastle and has a number of challenges, which have become more acute following the Covid-19 pandemic, such as:

  • A third of children in Lewisham are growing up in poverty.
  • Lewisham ranks as the 48th most deprived of 326 English local authorities.
  • Lewisham has the third highest levels of unemployment in London.

The types of local economic contributions made by the College are varied as is illustrated by the chart below.

Chart showing the types of local economic contribution including businesses, local residents, local borough and LEPS, and students.

The local and regional impact of Goldsmiths

Why now

This strategy sets out how Goldsmiths intends to play an even more significant role as a civic university – one which recognises how the College can deploy its strengths to help improve the lives of those living, working or studying locally and regionally. Following the Covid-19 pandemic, we know our community needs our support even more than ever. Goldsmiths is also reviewing, resetting and redoubling its work to address racial injustice. This includes a focus not only on advancing racial equality within the institution, but also on working with partners on collective actions to address it locally.

Geographical Reach

We will include a focus on our immediate locality of Lewisham, but also will be actively seeking opportunities to expand our reach across Greater London and the Thames Estuary Production Corridor as is illustrated in the figure below.

Map showing how Goldsmiths reaches out along the Thames Estuary Production Corridor

Geographical reach of Goldsmiths

Goldsmiths has also brought together other local anchor institutions in its locality, to work on a shared vision, which is set out in our Civic University Agreement where:

Together we will make Lewisham a more inclusive place to live, work, create and learn

With our partners, we are committed to work on our shared vision aimed at improving the lives of those living, working, creating and learning in the locality – the London Borough of Lewisham. In so doing, our work will also reflect our shared commitments to equality, diversity, and social and environmental justice.

Our approach to our civic responsibilities and engagement

In seeking to ensure Goldsmiths can harness our strengths as effectively as possible to respond to what our community needs and work even more effectively with local partners and stakeholders, Goldsmiths has taken a four-pronged approach:

  • Aligning the strategy with our existing strategies and values. It has sought to link and integrate the strategy with its existing strategies, as well as commitments currently in development, such as the Knowledge Exchange Concordat. The civic strategy speaks to a range of other strategies and activities: widening access and participation and student knowledge exchange; local and regional skilling and reskilling priorities; local growth and regeneration; and public and community engagement. In addition, it also helps to add additional impetus for new and emerging initiatives concerned with the need to provide our students with the skills and aptitudes that they will increasingly need to cope with the changing nature of work and the workplace. As mentioned earlier, the strategy also closely relates to the College’s values - promoting access and diversity and Creating change, locally and globally.
  • Securing buy-in from the College as a whole. Through its governing body (Council) and other senior figures, as well as through an internal Community Engagement Forum and specially convened Strategic Group, it has involved academic and professional service staff from across the College, and student union representatives.
  • Obtaining the best insights and evidence. It commissioned two external reports (one on social, cultural and economic impacts locally, and the other on what its community wants) to inform its priorities. Both reports involved extensive consultation with our stakeholders, partners and others in the local community. It continues to engage pro-actively with the Civic Universities Network (CUN), which was established to identify, support and promote best practice in this area. The College also draws on other consultations, such as those it has conducted with the members of its business community network. It also benefits from the extensive consultations undertaken by other partners within its locality, notably, those undertaken by London Borough of Lewisham, including its citizen assemblies.
  • Ensuring that there is a ‘user centred approach’. It has built on its current partnerships and Memoranda of Understanding with local stakeholders. These partnerships, together with College’s broader network, have helped to deliver major benefits for the local community, as a model employer (Goldsmiths is one of the three largest employers in Lewisham), as a driver of local business growth, as a means to meeting local reskilling and upskilling needs, and as a provider of social and civic infrastructure. Together with eleven other local institutions, the College has co-produced a Civic University Agreement – a joint statement of priorities which identifies how the College’s strengths might be deployed even more effectively to meet community needs, with much of the delivery in partnership with other anchor institutions. In so doing, the College is committed to responding to the changing needs of its local communities, ensuring that it remains a responsive, ethical partner.

The Vision

The vision for Goldsmiths’ civic responsibilities and engagement is that we will:

  1. Root our approach in collaboration and co-production with local partners and communities;
  2. Contribute positively to local culture, economy, health and wellbeing;
  3. Leverage our teaching, research and ideas, with mutual benefits for Goldsmiths and its partners and communities.

We will do this to help co-create New Cross and its environs across Lewisham and South-East London as an economically vibrant, socially inclusive and just, and culturally rich and diverse series of places.


To help deliver this vision and underpin the commitment both to social and cultural recovery post-Covid, but also to the development and revivification of the locality, we outline a series of objectives below, which have each been shaped by the CUA developed with our local stakeholders, to agree shared priorities, work and areas of collaboration. The objectives are to:

  1. Contribute to the locality as a continuous learning network by providing new educational opportunities and skills.
  2. Support economic growth, jobs and prosperity.
  3. Enhance our diverse, culturally rich and creative community, supporting arts and culture, health, well-being and quality of life initiatives.
  4. Work to co-construct the locality as environmentally sustainable.

This Strategy is underpinned by a number of policies and operational priorities, including: Community Engagement Strategy; Public Engagement Strategy; HEIF Strategy (2021/22 to 2024/25); Employability Strategy; and the College’s Operational Plan. Goldsmiths also recently created a new post, Head of Civic Engagement, with a responsibility to co-ordinate activities and build capacity.

Below we outline the actions that we will take forward to deliver each of these four objectives. These actions will be subject to regular review and will be overseen by a Civic Action Group, as well as a Civic Universities Agreement (CUA) Group, composed of all the signatories to the CUA who are partnering with the College on the delivery of the CUA, which will meet three times a year to review progress. Throughout the delivery of these two agreements, we will be seeking to demonstrate, and be recognised as, an exemplar institution of best practice and innovation in our approaches to our civic responsibilities and engagements. This will involve sparking public debate through events and interventions, policy briefings and reports, and the sharing and dissemination of good practice through engagements with the Civic University Network. This Strategy will be refreshed in 2024, and will be informed by this monitoring and also by an evaluation of the progress made towards achievement of the Strategy’s goals (see Theory of Change model in Appendix 1).

Objective 1:
Contribute to the locality as a continuous learning network by providing new educational opportunities and skills


Universities have a distinctive role to help society respond to the changing demands posed by the technological and social changes of the Fourth Industrial Revolution by reviewing how they can best support their students and alumni to develop the skills they will increasingly need for the future. As the future of work is expected to change radically in response to technological advances and disruption, Goldsmiths intends to enable individuals to access new learning opportunities, delivered in different, more flexible ways and at various career stages. The nature of its disciplines, the mix of theory and practice and interdisciplinarity, and its relatively small size combine to create an academic community that is known for linking up new ideas across disciplines to create new degree programmes and imaginative approaches to teaching, research and practice. This interdisciplinary ethos has helped Goldsmiths to develop a reputation in fields such as creative computing, practice-based research, creative and cultural studies, engaged civic and community research. Goldsmiths researchers are also actively reshaping curricula, curatorial and government policy, helping us in understanding ourselves and others, how we interact with new technologies, and social and environmental justice.

These disciplines also help to develop new technologies and services, including contributions to the UK’s creative industries which is an increasingly important part of the UK’s economy (at around 9% of GDP) and is also one of its fastest growing economic sectors. Skills in these areas are in high demand. For example, the need for high-level digital skills is expected to increase rapidly in the next decade or so, with around 90% of jobs in the next twenty years or so requiring some element of digital skills, at around one in five of all job vacancies. Already some 49% of SMEs are already expressing concerns about technical skills gaps. Following the pandemic, local levels of unemployment are high relative to other London Boroughs, with a pressing need to support the locality’s desire to reskill and upskill. Goldsmiths is therefore focusing on how its students, alumni and local residents might acquire these skills, and also how it might offer more opportunities for them to reskill during their careers and support their lifelong learning.


To advance this objective we will:

  1. Address ways in which our teaching and learning portfolio can respond to the challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, as part of a broader portfolio review and our focus on improving graduate employability outcomes and the student experience.
  2. Provide our students with knowledge, skills and insights to help them understand how they might address the challenges of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals in their future careers.
  3. Develop programmes and policies with local further education colleges, to provide learning and skills pathways across FE and HE institutions, with the aim of supporting them into jobs, focusing in particular on the barriers that Lewisham’s diverse ethnic population faces in terms of accessing skills education.
  4. Strengthen the work of Lewisham’s Strategic Learning Partnership and Lewisham Education Arts Network to deliver a Creative Skills Pathway; understanding and breaking down the barriers to careers in the Creative Sector.
  5. Re-energise and evolve our offer to meet local adult learning needs, both formal and informal, and to meet the education and employment needs of a local adult population. For example, through our work with Lewisham FE College on progression pathways for students, to help them move into HE studies at Goldsmiths; and through the guidance provided by Goldsmiths staff to staff and students at local FE Colleges on access to HE and employability clinics.
  6. Grow non-accredited short courses (delivered as online and face-to-face courses). We are looking to develop the number of our non-accredited short courses, and also to expand our executive training programme for business partners. As part of this review and expansion of our short course offer, we will, for example, explore the development of shorter courses to help students build up qualifications over time, targeting local skills needs and supporting economic and social regeneration.
  7. Heighten our widening participation and outreach activities, including the possible development of our holiday clubs for young people. Goldsmiths has a substantial education outreach programme that has engaged thousands of young people. This includes a number of programmes with local schools aimed at raising aspirations and encouraging participation in higher education among under-represented groups. Programmes like these will have a significant long-term impact on the economic life chances of many local residents. Many of the schools we work with have a minimum of 30% of pupils eligible for free school meals. In 2018/19, we worked with almost 170 schools and colleges, with over 300 events delivered in total, involving almost 3,000 pupils and students.

Objective 2:
Economic growth, jobs and prosperity


“Lewisham has the highest proportion of children and young people (29.6%) and older people (25.7%) in economic deprivation in England (Indices of Multiple Deprivation 2015).” In this context and as one of the largest employers in Lewisham, Goldsmiths brings significant social and economic benefits:

  • It directly employs around 2,000 staff and contributes an estimated £61m in GVA (Gross Value Added) annually to the Lewisham economy, generating £93m annually in GVA and supports 2,600 jobs, of which some £66m in GVA and just over 2,000 jobs are created in LB Lewisham with £80m in GVA and 2,350 jobs at the London level.
  • Goldsmiths’ student body has a big impact on the local economy through their spending on goods and services, and by providing a source of labour whilst studying and attracting visitor spend.
  • The biggest economic impact is, of course, created through a supply of skilled graduates who will raise productivity. In total these student impacts are estimated at £244m in GVA and around 1,400 jobs. Of this, £25m in GVA and 440 jobs are in Lewisham and £115m in GVA and 1,250 jobs are in London.

The cultural and creative industries are a priority for London, providing one in six jobs in the capital and generates around £47bn for the economy. Similarly, this is an important economic sector for Lewisham. The creative and digital sectors have been identified as an important economic sector for the Borough, providing opportunities to support the development of new jobs and business growth. Much of what we do at Goldsmiths is directly relevant to this sector. For example, we informed the development of Creative Enterprise Zones (a mayoral initiative to support creative sector start-ups, grow new jobs and help local people develop their skills and the Greater London Authority’s flagship programme for growth in the creative sector), including the CEZ within our locality of New Cross and Deptford.

The CEZ Action Plan for New Cross and Deptford describes the area as, “where the arts meets technology, where socially engaged creative practice realises its commercial potential, and where global excellence in research and teaching connects with one of London’s most radical and high growth creative industries clusters”. It goes on to say with regards to Goldsmiths that, “Goldsmiths is our key creative engine – and a vital driver of London’s creative economy. It provides much of our talent, has shaped the district’s creative identity for several generations, and it has pioneered new ways of working that are transforming the very ways we operate as cultural beings.”

Goldsmiths has also been growing its engagement with business, public and third-party organisations. These take the form of research and development activities through to hosting of third-party events and the leasing of facilities. The level of engagement with business, including locally based SMEs, has been increasing rapidly, with a focus on supporting SMEs in the creative and digital sectors and led by female or Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic entrepreneurs.

Similarly, supporting students to start their own business or become self-employed is a key aspect within the University Employability Strategy. A recent report on students at UK universities starting their own businesses ranked Goldsmiths as 3rd out of the 121 universities analysed from the Guardian’s university league table. The study, based on the LinkedIn profiles of more than 9m previous university students in the UK, indicated that 14.8 % of Goldsmiths’ students had gone on to start or run a business ( Many of our students start their own businesses in the local or regional area, making direct contributions to the vibrancy of these economies.


To advance this objective we will:

  1. Mobilise our research and innovation expertise to support local businesses, especially those in the creative and digital sectors as well as those led by female and/or Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic entrepreneurs. We will offer research informed business toolkits, business support, entrepreneurial short courses, together with advisory clinics and networking opportunities. By creating two-way engagements between businesses and our researchers, students and alumni, participating businesses can access leading research to support their business while researchers will be able to draw on these engagements to advance their research and enterprise agendas, with a particular focus on addressing the barriers female and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic entrepreneurs face.
  2. Encourage and support our researchers to engage in local and global research community efforts aimed at advancing the Sustainable Development Goals.
  3. Facilitate student placements/internships - providing benefits to students and businesses alike. Students have an opportunity to develop and refine their skills while businesses benefit from the time and expertise of these students.
  4. Work collectively with local partners to provide resources for the Creative Sector, including space, expertise and joint funding initiatives. This includes support for local SMEs and freelancers.
  5. Advance our commitments as a member of the Lewisham Council convened ‘Lewisham Backs Business’ taskforce and the ‘Lewisham Deal’ to support business recovery and growth locally, and continue to deliver value to our locality by acting as a model employer.
  6. Heighten our contributions to the development of the Greater London Authority’s (GLA) network of Creative Enterprise Zones. In so doing, we will continue to inform the creative and digital strategies for the GLA and also for LB of Lewisham.
  7. Develop partnerships with industry, government and the public and private sectors, with a focus on tackling specific Sustainable Development Goals.

Objective 3:
Work to enhance our diverse and culturally rich and creative community, supporting culture, health, well-being and quality of life initiatives


The Borough of Lewisham is fortunate in having a number of notable cultural organisations in addition to Goldsmiths. Together with Goldsmiths, the Albany, Trinity Laban, the Horniman and the Migration Museum all play an important part in the area’s social and cultural infrastructure. Many of the academic departments at Goldsmiths make direct contributions to cultural life and influence cultural and artistic practice, with their activities reaching the public through exhibitions at museums and galleries as well as broadcast media. Examples include the PureGold music festival and The Goldsmiths Prize literary award, which are rooted in our English and Music academic departments whilst contributing to our broader reputation. Departments are often involved in prestigious events and exhibitions, such as the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition, and the Wellcome Collection. Our alumni have won the Turner Prize (eight times), and also include an Oscar winner (the director Steve McQueen for 12 Years a Slave). More recently, Goldsmiths established the Goldsmiths Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA) is London’s newest contemporary art institution and is open to everyone. CCA already has an active programme of outreach and public engagement, working with schools and communities in the locality.

Lewisham’s London Borough of Culture award in 2022 presents an opportunity for Goldsmiths, together with other partners, notably, The Albany, Trinity Laban, the Horniman and the Migration Museum, to make significant contributions to this year long cultural festival celebrating Lewisham’s rich and diverse culture.

The Borough of Lewisham is also fortunate in having a pro-active and engaged community and voluntary sector, such as Lewisham Local. Goldsmiths has active public and community engagement programmes, which are complemented by its student and staff volunteering, internships and placements.

Goldsmiths makes its cultural and sporting assets (which include a community library pass and free or discounted room hire) accessible to the local community. As mentioned earlier, CCA plays an important role in the locality’s cultural infrastructure. Goldsmiths also makes significant contributions to Lewisham’s night-time economy. Our consultations with our local community show how valued these facilities are. These consultations have also shown the impacts of our programme of public and community Engagement. Our research and public engagement activities have drawn on and worked with the local community to highlight their stories and build upon their knowledge and experience. Examples of this can be seen in the work of our researchers showcasing the material legacy of the women of the Windrush generation, particularly their crafts and textiles, as well as the work on the Battle of Lewisham memorial. Much of this work has been focussed on combatting racial injustice and highlighting the diverse histories in the locality.

Teaching and research at Goldsmiths has led to improvements in the delivery and effectiveness of public services. For example, research undertaken in our Department of Social, Therapeutic and Community Studies (STaCs) in partnership with the City of London Corporation helped to change social work policy and practice by showing social work is frequently ‘gamed’ by middle-class families. Research findings directly resulted in new policies for social work with affluent families in this borough and in 5 further London boroughs, with 12 more nationally actively considering policy change, and the findings being shared across all 343 local authorities in England. This work is also being shared with social work leaders in Norway, Finland and Sweden. We also intend to heighten our collaborations and engagements with local Public Health authority and the NHS Trust to develop mutually beneficial joint work. Insights and expertise from Goldsmiths has also informed work undertaken by schools, museums and galleries focused on decolonising the curriculum.


To advance this objective we will:

  1. Use the Borough of Culture as the starting point for closer partnerships with local cultural institutions, to explore how the arts can provide insight and deliver social change at an individual, organisational and community level; and ensure Lewisham takes its places as a distinctive destination for domestic and foreign visitors.
  2. Work with partners and our communities to research and tell the stories of Lewisham’s diverse history, sharing these stories widely through digital, public realm and other projects.
  3. Seek to create more opportunities for Goldsmiths’ staff to work with local schools, colleges and museums on decolonising curricula and curatorial policy through, for example, the development of jointly organised research sandpits and other initiatives developed with local partners.
  4. Increase the number, quality and effective communication of opportunities for Goldsmiths students to volunteer or undertake placements in local community organisations.
  5. Seek to involve and inspire our local community with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals through our public and community engagement activities.
  6. Continue to initiate mutually beneficial collaborations based on our expertise with local and regional community organisations, particularly health providers. This will include a focus on how the expertise of our staff and students can inform the development of counselling clinics, as well as bespoke training for professionals in social work and youth and community services.
  7. Explore the possibility of creating a Law Clinic, operated by our law students supervised by the Law Department, to provide a variety of pro bono legal services to the residents and local businesses.
  8. Work with the Mental Health Provider Alliance to support initiatives to improve the Borough’s mental well-being, and support the implementation of the Public Health approach to crime and violence reduction.
  9. Strengthen our public and local community programmes of engagement, including the community outreach programme of the CCA and encourage Lewisham’s diverse publics to attend events and actively participate in mutually beneficial exchanges with our academics.
  10. Enable our local community to access our cultural and sporting assets and signpost these opportunities more prominently. We have community use of Goldsmiths facilities, which includes a community library pass and free or discounted room hire. These provide local community benefits which we intend to promote more actively.
  11. Explore the potential to develop opportunities for our students to mentor young people in the Borough, particularly those from disadvantaged and deprived areas.
  12. Support social prescribing opportunities by complementing the work of Lewisham Council, the Lewisham Clinical Commissioning, Lewisham GPs and the third sector.
  13. Work with CUA partners on the borough’s initiatives to support migrants and refugees and its work as a Borough of Sanctuary, drawing on the College’s research expertise and insights on migration.
  14. Continue our work to advise cultural institutions and schools on decolonising their curricula.
  15. Work with community partners on community engagement plans for Deptford Town Hall and plans for its statues.

Objective 4:
Work to co-construct the locality as environmentally sustainable.


In 2019, the Warden committed to deliver a Green New Deal for Goldsmiths. This involves a series of measures in response to the climate emergency. The Green New Deal represents a comprehensive programme of actions that are embedded across all aspects of the College’s activities. These actions also speak to the Sustainable Development Goals. It involves: reviewing the curriculum with the aim of heightening opportunities for students to increase their understanding of climate change challenges; reducing emissions from the College’s premises and supporting biodiversity on campus; and integrating climate actions within its plans for research and enterprise, as well as those related to its civic mission, in order to harness existing expertise on climate change addressing while building capacity to do more. The actions below seek to align with this pre-existing commitment and deliver positive benefits to the local community.


To advance this objective we will:

  1. Build partnerships with local community by consulting with local schools and community groups on reducing vehicle traffic to coordinating with nearby green spaces. We will build partnerships with local organisations that have a shared interest in improving our local environment in New Cross.
  2. Improve biodiversity on our campus. This will involve an ecological review of our campus and survey of our estate, with the aim of informing a five-year Biodiversity Management strategy, to be delivered between 2021-2026. We will also go herbicide and pesticide-free and will reintroduce composting and green waste reuse on campus.
  3. Raise awareness of the resources we have on our campus, available to staff, students and the wider community, including the Goldsmiths Allotment, Pigment Garden and the planned Art Research Garden. We will add new signage highlighting environmental features and important biodiverse habitats, and we also will organise events such as bat walks for our students, staff and wider community.
  4. Orient our research and knowledge exchange activity through projects with people and organisations across the locality to develop ecologically sustainable forms of living and work. This will involve the champions of a number of our Strategic Research Themes and the work led by our Academic Lead for Knowledge Exchange, as well as incentives and pump priming support to encourage more research and enterprise activities relevant to climate change challenges and building internal capacity.
  5. Work with other ‘Lewisham Deal’ partners (the Lewisham Deal is composed of the leaders of the anchor institutions in Lewisham who come together to deliver an inclusive local economy for businesses and residents) on shared climate emergency actions, and seek strategic alignment with the Lewisham climate plan.
  6. Work with Lewisham Borough Council on its climate change actions, including those aimed at reducing air pollution by raising public awareness of the dangers of air pollution.
  7. Encourage engagement in environmental sustainability debates, including public engagement activities and contributions to the Lewisham’s London Borough of Culture programme of climate focused events.


Measurement of success will utilise a Theory of Change model to weigh up the success of this programme of work.

Overleaf is a draft representation of how this underpinning logic model might look in practice.

We will also collect quantitative data. To inform monitoring and evaluation of our activities, we will start by gathering baseline data on:

  • Number of school outreach events and their participants, including data on other widening participation initiatives, as well as outreach data from CCA
  • Number of students recruited from the locality
  • Numbers of staff and student volunteers
  • Number of residents holding a library pass
  • Number of community groups using our conference facilities
  • Income secured for business growth or skills programmes
  • Number of those participating on business growth or skills programmes and their outcomes (in terms of new jobs created, setting up their own business or gaining employment, new services and products created)
  • Number of local residents taking short courses
  • Public engagement data

In addition, we will collect qualitative data to supplement the quantitative material we obtain and develop case studies to illustrate the impacts we are having. This is likely to involve:

  • Surveying the beneficiaries of our activities across the following activities: outreach and widening participation; skills and reskilling programmes; business growth programmes; public and community engagement events; and facilities. This might also include commissioning focus groups


Feeding into the Objectives:

  1. These are embedded across the College as a whole, involving all academic departments with activities spanning teaching, research and enterprise, the Students’ Union, as well as many professional service areas. A recently created role of Head of Civic Engagement will help corral these activities.
  2. The pro-bono time of hundreds of staff and student volunteers.
  3. The College’s facilities – library, CCA and campus.


Feeding into the Objectives, the vision for Goldsmiths’ civic responsibilities and engagement is that we will:

  1. Root our approach to collaboration and co-production with local partners and communities;
  2. Contribute positively to local culture, economy, health and wellbeing;
  3. Leverage Goldsmiths’ teaching, research and ideas, with mutual benefits for Goldsmiths and its partners and communities.

Objective Outputs

Objective 1 (Educational opportunities)

Include a greater focus on future employability in the review of teaching and learning portfolio; set up progression pathways with local FE Colleges and develop skills and reskilling programmes with them; heighten school outreach; help raise aspirations of local school pupils; review the Short Course portfolio; include a sharper focus in outreach programmes on attracting more participants from the locality and adjacent boroughs.

Objective 2 (Economic growth)

Mobilise Research and innovation activity, focusing on creative and digital sectors; expand network and research collaborations, continue as a model employer (procurement and facilitation); grow further business support programmes and new skills programmes, with a focus on creative and digital sectors; work with partners on delivering ‘Lewisham Backs Business’ commitments.

Objective 3 (Health and Well-being)

Encourage more staff and student volunteering; extend public and community engagement, including Festivals and LB of Culture; heighten promotion and signalling of our cultural and sporting assets to the local community; support local public health authorities and NHS by developing Wellbeing Clinic; explore how CUA partnership can strengthen local social prescribing initiatives.

Objective 4 (Environmental Sustainability)

Undertake an ecological review of campus and make it more accessible; build relationships with local communities and contribute to Lewisham climate plan; encourage more research and knowledge exchange on sustainable living and work; increase public awareness of climate change actions.


Fed from the Objectives:

  • Increase the number of students recruited locally;
  • Inspire and support young people in the locality;
  • Provide more educational opportunities for local residents to help them upskill and reskill;
  • Increase the level of inward investment in the region by securing new business growth and skills initiatives;
  • Position the College as a leading university for the creative and digital sectors;
  • Encourage the community’s take-up of our estate and our cultural and sporting assets;
  • Use the London Borough of Culture and related CUA initiatives to build stronger partnerships with cultural institutions and collectively raise public awareness of the borough’s climate actions;
  • Deploy the expertise of the College’s staff and students to support local public health priorities;
  • Be an exemplar institution for its climate change actions and its approach to its civic responsibilities and engagement.

Underpinning Assumptions

  • Sufficient resource can be directed, and brought together, to this activity
  • Internal buy-in continues to be secured from across the College
  • Additional external resource can be won through competitive funding bids
  • We retain the trust of the local community by delivering on what we commit to do
  • Goldsmiths’ strengths can be effectively aligned to the community ‘s needs