return to research page


An Interdisciplinary Arts-based
Research Centre



Funded by Canada Foundation for Innovation Leader’s Opportunity Fund – an infrastructure and equipment grant.

Project Leader & Studio Director: Diane Conrad

This project involved renovations to an existing space to create a flexible, multi-purpose, state-of-the-art performance/presentation venue, with a stage area, audience seating, theatrical lighting and sound systems, projection and computers for digital imaging and video editing.

The ABR-Studio supports the project leader’s ongoing research in drama education using applied theatre approaches, focusing on developing the capacity to critically examine the world, with various populations of “at-risk” youth, Aboriginal youth, incarcerated youth and street youth. This work is vital in addressing youth issues in our complex social environment and innovative in its approach.

The centre enhances the capacity for collaboration amongst researchers and for training students in arts-based research methods, contributing to building a community of arts-based researchers, developing the quality of research conducted and promoting the methods locally, nationally and internationally. Researchers at the University of Alberta and across Canada from various fields, motivated by the desire to more fully understand the nature of human experiences in order to contribute to a more just and inclusive society; or to research the nature of artistic creativity, process and aesthetic responses to art, are interested in exploring the powerful alternative methods offered by the arts. Arts-based research provides means of asking questions and expressing understandings of sensitive issues related to marginalized or vulnerable populations for which other methods are inadequate. With the potential to engage wider audiences with the research, allowing empathic and experiential understandings, and more constructive attitudes regarding individuals’ diverse needs, arts-based research has the potential to enhance quality of life; promote social involvement, appreciation and participation in the arts; and contribute to the revitalization of culture.

For ongoing activities and events at the ABR-Studio as well as bibliography and links please see and/or join our Arts-based Research Studio Ning social network site:

Arts-based Research Studio in the Resesarch Media

Research Media Ltd. (Nov., 2013). Dramatis personae, Meaningful expression. International Innovation, 116(North America), 15-17. Bingley, UK: Author.

Arts-based Research Video



ABR Symposium 2011ABR symposium 2012