Consultation on digital heritage: HLF

The Heritage Lottery Fund distributes National Lottery funding to projects in the heritage sector – a sector that covers a wide span from museums and galleries to our industrial history, biodiversity and intangible heritage.

In spring of 2018 it carried out a wide-reaching consulation on its vision, focus and funding priorities for its next five-year strategic period. Drawing on our expertise in research and consultation but also as digital practitioners across a wide range of sectors and technologies, we helped HLF go deep into the digital aspects of this consultation. We used a process of interviews, analysis of survey data and consideration of our findings to produce an in-depth report with a series of recommendations on the funding of digital work.

We worked together with HLF and pooled our contacts in order to identify a set of interviewees that included, on the one hand, senior stakeholders representing different heritage sectors, and on the other, digital experts with experience in the heritage sector, and conducted interviews according to a consistent plan. The range of perspectives we heard on our questions was fascinating and, as in all the best projects, we learned a great deal from the exercise. In parallel, we applied rigorous quantitative and qualitative analysis to hundreds of survey responses across eight free text questions. Taken together, the interviews and survey data furnished a clear set of common patterns that provided the basis for our report and recommendations.