Robert Gordon University is harnessing the power of storytelling to support the creative industries in northern Europe.
Over the next two years the €1 million ‘StoryTagging’ project will showcase stories that celebrate the natural and cultural heritage of northern communities and work with small and medium businesses to bring those stories to life through new products or works.
Managed by RGU Orkney, the international project has been funded in part by the Northern Periphery and Arctic (NPA) Programme of the European Union.
It involves RGU, UHI and partners in Northern Ireland, Finland, Sweden and Russia.
Elsa Cox, RGU’s Orkney development manager, said: “Orkney shares a strong history of storytelling with the project regions as demonstrated by local folklore, music, art and an annual storytelling festival.
“The StoryTagging project is exciting as it brings the opportunity to enhance market reach by imbuing creative products with those stories.
“Such stories bring large numbers of visitors to the islands annually, keen to experience the landscape and local culture for themselves.
“Creative SME’s in the north of Scotland face similar economic challenges to those based across the project area due to location, distance to market and even lack of internet connection.
“With the potential to make it easier to do business sustainably in remote regions, the StoryTagging project has a great deal to offer locally.”
One of the central activities will involve developing an integrated digital platform to host stories, trails, movies and information about locations and events in a wide range of multimedia formats.
It will collect up to 30 stories in each partner country which celebrate language, dialect and culture, economic heritage, traditions, history, folklore, landscape and archaeology.