This laboratory supports a community of researchers working at the intersection of creative practice as a research method, visual sociology and anthropology at RMIT. Associate (external) members bring in expertise from the epistemic community of RMITs’ research partners. Following on from the foundational work of Celia Lury and Nina Wakeford in Inventive Methods: The Happening of the Social, the fields of visual sociology and anthropology have continued to expand methodologically, as the roles that digital and creative methods play in generating research findings have become increasingly useful in sociology and anthropology. Digital creative practices such as the production and consumption of user generated images and media on increasing ranges of platforms are now key to knowledge transmission and value adding in people’s professional and personal worlds. Social research needs to understand, and recognize the impacts of such economies. At the same time, the field of socially engaged arts practice has grown considerably in the UK, America and Europe. While these fields are distinct in terms of both method and canonical history, they share an interest in the ways aesthetic forms communicate information and an investment in the agency of aesthetics as a method for effecting social change. In the first institutional union of these cognate areas, CRIMP explores interdisciplinary connections between socially engaged arts practice, visual sociology and anthropology. Focusing on understanding creative economies of user generated media; and effecting and mapping social change, with a view to explicating the role that digital worlds and practices play in facilitating social change, lab members work across a broad spectrum of material, social and cultural contexts in examining how methods for understanding the social also re-make and re-shape the social in ways that can be employed to effect social change. Responsive, contingent, creative and respectful research practices characterise the work of this lab’s members.


  • Lead the intersection of creative research and social practice as method
  • Understand how the production and consumption of user generated images and media on web-based platforms are now key to knowledge transmission and value adding in people’s professional and personal worlds
  • Develop models for understanding safe, educational and enjoyable technology use for young people
  • Facilitating complex non-verbal communication across cultures with a view to social cohesion
  • Accessing knowledges typically excluded from university research

Our Priority Areas:

  • Improving the lives of marginalised and disadvantaged children and young people
  • Developing methods for understanding, and working with, hard to reach communities
  • Advancing interdisciplinary connections between sociology, anthropology and creative arts

Our Expertise:

CRIMP consists of an interdisciplinary team of researchers with expertise in media and communication, health, visual sociology, anthropology, visual and performing arts practice, education, gender studies, policy development and qualitative methodology.

Together, we undertake:

  • Responsive, engaged and collaborative community research
  • Unique forms of knowledge production, capture and ethical analysis
  • Policy and curriculum development
  • Social impact mapping and measurement
  • Experimental, large scale research design and delivery

Lab Leader


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