Holly Selby

Entrepreneurial, Creative, Strategist, Art marketing and development, Digital, Digital strategy, management, Arts management.

Holly is a digital strategist, project- and product manager with experience of developing complex digital solutions for the arts and cultural sector. Since joining MA ACE Holly has deepened her interest in the effect of technological innovation within the arts. Using her experience in London’s tech sector, Holly has interrogated the relationship between bleeding-edge digital transformation with small public and private sector arts, cultural and heritage organisations. Extensively researching the impact on practitioners, managers, administrators and audiences, Holly is concerned with finding meaningful and pragmatic solutions to technical challenges within the cultural sector.

Holly has a degree in Illustration and over her 10-year career has worked in the fashion and retail sector as well as the arts and tech sectors. She is married and lives in East London with her husband and dog, enjoys literature, music, wine and healthy eating. Holly is also a mentor for the charity The Girl’s Network, occasionally volunteers at the Courthauld Institute as part of their digitisation project, and is a supporter of the Fawcett Society, a feminist organisation committed to gender equality and women’s rights.


Another Art Consultancy – how the principles of action research and open innovation can be used to collectively break down barriers to digital innovation in the arts and cultural sector.

This paper offers an overview of the current state of digital innovation within the arts and cultural sector, with a focus on small arts organisations and the expectations placed on them both by audiences and funders. Considering the impact of digital on people, the research in this paper demonstrates the need for arts organisations to take digital innovation seriously, simultaneously acknowledging the significant barriers to innovation they face. Using the principles of action research in an organisational setting alongside Chesbrough’s open innovation model, the paper offers a proposal for new cultural intervention that supports the arts from the ground up, and the inside out.

With ACE’s draft 10-year strategy (2020-2030) outlining a requirement for diversity in funding streams, alongside the growing importance of digitally native audiences, retaining relevance through digital will be absolutely essential to the survival of many organisations within the sector. This proposal aims to tackle the challenges such entities face in achieving fruitful digital innovation head-on, through pragmatism, iteration and collaboration, with a view to providing a robust vehicle for sustainable change.