top of page


Our story for the past 27 years has been one of innovation and constant evolution in the field of creative learning.  At the heart of our work is the belief in the innate creativity of every individual. 


IVE started out life in April 1997 as a research and development organisation with charitable status; known as CAPE UK (Creative Arts Partnerships in Education UK), a sister organisation to CAPE Chicago in America. Cape quickly established itself as thought leaders in the field of creative thinking and was at the forefront of research around creativity and the impact it can have on learning. The model developed centred around placing creative experts in the classroom alongside teachers to support them in delivering curriculum.


QCA produced their guide on developing creative teaching and learning, called 'Creativity: Find It, Promote It'. The first publication that attempted to define the skills and competencies developed through creative activities.


By 2016, and as a result of adapting our methodology and broadening our definition of ‘Learner’ to include adults as well as young people, we felt that Creative Arts Partnerships in Education (CAPE) no longer reflected who we were. We identified as CreatIVE, AdaptIVE, SupportIVE and InnovatIVE and so ‘We are IVE’ was born. As well as a growing number of clients from a range of sectors, we have also been successful in securing specific pieces of work that have progressed our thinking and our ability to reach target audiences. Such as; -2013 – 2015: Strong Voices – DFE funded action research exploring the impact that cultural experiences would have on the aspirations, confidence and outcomes for disadvantaged young people across West Yorkshire -2014 – 2016: Creative Skills Initiative, which involved working with 230 young people and employers to set up bespoke study programmes -2016 – Contracted by the British Council to write a training programme focused on teaching for creativity for teachers worldwide -2016 – 2017: Contracted to run the Artists Development Programme for Hull City of Culture -2016 – 2018: Commissioned by Paul Hamlyn Foundation (PHF) to run a pilot training programme for teachers in partnership with Royal Shakespeare Company ahead of PHF introducing a new fund.


In 1999 we contributed to the seminal report to government entitled ‘All Our Futures’, which proved to be the blueprint for government policy for the next decade. During this time we led a national programme of research involving 58 Local Authorities, 150 schools and 37 universities.


By 2012, the educational landscape had shifted to reflect the priorities of the coalition government, resulting in CAPE UK seeking new opportunities to develop. We therefore became one of Arts Council England’s (ACE) 10 ‘Bridge Organisations’ with the responsibility for supporting the cultural sector within Yorkshire and the Humber to connect with schools and young people. Over the next 11 years we built an infrastructure of networks, programmes of support and a range of development initiatives that impacted on literally thousands of young people and influenced the cultural footprint of the region. The legacy of our work can be seen in the number of Cultural Education Partnerships that exist across the region as well as the number of young people and the people who work with them who were directly impacted by the opportunities we were able to provide.


Commissioned by the National Lottery Heritage Fund to run ‘Ignite Yorkshire’ as part of their ‘Kick the Dust’ programme. This project equated to well over £1m of funding and was focused on empowering young peoples’ leadership to help transform the infrastructure of Yorkshire’s waterways. -2018: Working with the Creative and Culture sector in Hull to set up 44 apprenticeships and internships -2018 – 2023: Commissioned by the National Lottery Heritage Fund to run ‘Ignite Yorkshire’ as part of their ‘Kick the Dust’ programme. This project equated to well over £1m of funding and was focused on empowering young peoples’ leadership to help transform the infrastructure of Yorkshire’s waterways.


‘The Creative Action Research Awards’ (CARA) led to us becoming advisors to government on creative learning and between 2002-2011, leading part of a programme built around our model of placing creative practitioners in classrooms - ‘Creative Partnerships’, which at £350m, is the highest funded piece of staff development the world has seen.


Since 2014 we have successfully delivered a range of learning and development programmes to almost every sector of the economy including energy, tech, armed forces, police, construction, engineering, health and gaming in addition to schools, education, the 3rd sector and of course, young people. All of our programmes are built upon the following principles. -That creativity can be defined and taught -That people can be more creative if they understand how creativity works -That embracing irrelevance, emphasising emotion over intellect and the irrational over the rational can lead to more success when solving a problem. -That reducing inhibitions can enable the inherent creativity within people to come to the fore -That behaviours and language can promote, but also inhibit creativity -That engaging in applied creativity processes can have a significant positive impact on an individuals’ confidence, mental health and wellbeing, motivation, resilience, ability to collaborate effectively, ability to communicate effectively and be proactive in finding solutions to problems and challenges – in other words, it makes them highly employable as well as rounded citizens.


Various contracts with West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA) focused on aspects of progression and employability including; ‘Effective Transitions’ – a 2 year programme geared towards increasing the number of girls who pursue advanced study in STEM subjects; ‘Targeted Transitions’ – an extension to the previous programme; ‘Positive Destinations’ – A programme supporting young people into employment who are currently in alternative educational provision; ‘Teachers’ Encounters in Business’; ‘Raising Aspirations in Construction’ and ‘Creative Careers’.

2023 - Present

In April 2023 our role as an Arts Council England Sector Support Agency and ‘Bridge Organisation’ came to an end, which has enabled us to increase our focus on Applied Creativity and how it can be used as a mechanism to; -Improve mental health and wellbeing -Raise aspirations -Increase employment prospects -Inspire enterprise and entrepreneurship -Nurture leadership at all levels -Improve the life chances of young people. Our Applied Creativity Labs also provide a problem solving process that places the solution for the world’s greatest challenges, in the hands of young people. In so doing, we are investing in the decision makers of tomorrow and building a creative nation who are equipped, agile and capable of dealing with the rapidly changing landscape that is the 21st century.

bottom of page