Steve Redhead brings Accelerated Culture to Bolton

Posted on Friday 19th October 2012

Steve Redhead

One of the country’s finest professors and commentators on contemporary culture, Steve Redhead, has joined the University of Bolton as its Visiting Professor of Accelerated Culture. 

Professor Redhead has spent his academic career working and studying different aspects of modern and popular culture. He is now internationally recognised as the foremost scholar on Accelerated Culture, an area of research he pioneers.

He said: ‘Accelerated Culture is the term I came up with in my research to describe what it is like to live today in a world governed by fast changing technologies which have shrunk time and space.’

But Accelerated Culture goes beyond the simple advancement of modern communication technologies and explores how they affect our interactions with the world around us.

He explains: ‘The speed of instant communications, like broadcasting and social media in the twenty-first century, is a good example. The experience of accelerated culture though is often that we are sedentary couch potatoes watching the speeded up world go by at the speed of light.’

Professor Redhead has been following and studying modern and cultural trends since the late Eighties when he set up the now world-renowned Manchester Institute for Popular Culture.

As well as his pioneering research in Manchester and the north west region, he has also held professorships and creative industry positions in Canada and Australia.

He said: ‘I have done a great deal of work on the creative industries in different countries, especially in their links to the regeneration of urban culture. I was Chair of the Creative Industries Taskforce for the Premier of Western Australia in Perth, for instance.’

Despite his international work, Professor Redhead is happy to be back in his native north west, at the University of Bolton. He said: ‘I am thrilled to be working with such excellent staff and students at the University. I learn something from them every day. I particularly enjoy being able to work with early career researchers, and through my experience and national and international contacts, enable them to develop their research abilities and capacities.’

As well as Bolton’s creative credentials, it is also its reputation in providing education for everyone that attracted Professor Redhead to the post.

He said: ‘I have always been interested in widening participation for the community and the University of Bolton has a reputation for a strong involvement in its region and for encouraging anyone with talent, whatever their background, to become involved in the University. I am delighted to be a part of that especially at a time when times are hard for so many people.’