School for the Creative and Cultural Industries



The new School brings together a cross-disciplinary team of academic, creative, cultural, technical, industry, and engagement professionals. Find out more about who is involved in the running and development of the School.


Haidy Geismar photo
Professor Haidy Geismar is the inaugural Director of the School for the Creative and Cultural Industries. 

She is a social anthropologist with extensive experience of working in partnership with cultural practitioners including curators, community groups and artists, and with cultural organisations, including long-term connections to several museums, including the Tate and Victoria and Albert Museum in London. 

She is an active curator, curating the UCL Ethnography Collections and working with museums including the Cambridge Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the East West Gallery, Honolulu. She is also Chair of the Royal Anthropological Institute Photography Committee and one of the founding editors of a new open access series, Anthropology and Photography.

Her research interests focus on intellectual and cultural property, indigenous rights, colonial histories and legacies, new forms of cultural representation, the affects and effect of digitisation, the anthropology of art, critical museology and the South Pacific (especially Vanuatu and New Zealand). She is the author or editor of several books including Impermanence: exploring continuous change across cultures (with Ton Otto and Cameron Warner, 2022 UCL Press), Museum Object Lessons for the Digital Age (2018, University College London Press), The Routledge Cultural Property Reader (with Jane Anderson, 2017), and Treasured Possessions: Indigenous Interventions into Cultural and Intellectual Property (2013, Duke University Press).  

Prior to her role as Director of the School for Creative and Cultural Industries, Haidy was Vice-Dean for Strategic Projects, leading on the inception, planning and establishment of the new programmes and facilities at UCL East, working with academics across numerous disciplines and Faculties and ensuring that the School’s programmes and specialist spaces were developed to reflect the needs of practitioners, cultural organisations and community organisations, particularly in East London. 

Core Team

Professor Haidy Geismar - Director

Haidy is responsible for the strategic direction of the School, working with academics, industry partners and cultural practitioners to ensure that the cutting-edge research and teaching within the School is reflective of, and support, the needs of the creative and cultural industries. 

Send Haidy an email

Dr Kara Blackmore - Curator - Urban Room 

To develop the Urban Room as a space for experiential learning, exhibition making and community dialogue Kara will use her experience in academic institutions and with community-driven exhibition making to support a dynamic user group of people who want to address issues of urbanism and public history. 

Send Kara an email

Andrea De Santis - Operations Manager

Andrea is responsible for all operational areas of the School, working with faculties and departments and supporting the Academic Director in the establishment and running of the School. Andrea also leads the professional service team who support all areas of the School’s administration and engagement activities.

Send Andrea an email

Prof Michael Stewart - Innovation & Enterprise Lead

Send Michael an email

Ella Strickland de Souza – Senior Communications and Marketing Officer

Ella oversees the communications for the school including the website, social media channels and events.

Send Ella an email

Kailey Nolan – Senior Communications and Marketing Officer (maternity cover)

Kailey oversees the internal and external communications for the school including the website, social media channels, and events, and supports engagement and partnerships with creative, cultural, and community stakeholders. 

Send Kailey an email

Tomoyo Miyakawa – Employer Engagement & Work-Related Learning Manager

Tomoyo is responsible for developing industry partnerships with a focus on student employability and for delivering a wide range of work-related learning activities for undergraduate and postgraduate students across SCCI.

Send Tomoyo an email

Spencer Samuel - Media Production Technical Specialist

Spencer is a Media Production Technical Specialist working in ISD. He is currently working with the SCCI programme on the set-up and delivery of the Media Studios, Specialist Computer Cluster rooms and BlackBox in Marshgate.

Simba Chivaka - Cluster Room & Media Space Support Specialist

Simba works closely with Spencer to manage the School's cutting-edge spaces and equipment, including the BlackBox, an acoustically optimized audio room, a recording suite, podcast suite, two screening rooms, and an audio dub suite. Additionally, Simba manages a grinding suite and two production suites. These efforts aim to create inspiring workspaces across diverse creative domains.