Open Cinema


Our Mission

To enable any individual or community to move from exclusion to participation.

Our Theory of Change

Open Cinema has developed its theory of change in the light of discoveries from our national pilot evaluation (2009-10), including through a two-day workshop facilitated in 2016 by The Social Innovation Partnership. This has continued to evolve (see slide), but remains based on a four-step process, by which we achieve our mission:

Engagement: motivating excluded people to take part in community activities

Inspiration: sparking new or renewed interests or aspirations

Development: converting interests into life or media skills through OC activities

Progression: enabling onward pathways into education, employment, and improved life circumstances.

Open Cinema's Theory of Change (Slide 1) (opens image)

Open Cinema's Theory of Change (Slide 2) (opens image)


  • In October 2015, Dr Clive James Nwonka (see Team) joined Open Cinema as its first Impact Director. In November, he presented a paper on Open Cinema at the Salford Media Festival.

    This paper develops the work - within a rigorously academic framework - of mapping the contours of our work as a catalyst for community development. More reports in this line of enquiry may be expected in 2016.

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  • In 2013, Open Cinema was invited by Homeless Link to contribute to an experts panel for Get Creative, their initative to increase understanding and access for homelessness organisations to the value of arts activities.

    With the other contributing organisations, including Streetwise Opera and Cafe Art, Open Cinema helped develop the methodology which informed the report, welcomed Get Creative project leaders to our workshops and offices, and promoted the initiative through our networks. The published report includes a case study on Open Cinema.

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    For a printed copy of this report, costing £5.00 including post, packaging and VAT, please email

  • Between May and July 2013, Open Cinema and the Open University partnered with Crisis Skylight in London to present a second OU Cinema season in collaboration with their members.

    Advances made in this pilot included the integration of short learning videos from the OU, and the availability of bursaried pathways into accredited further OU courses.

    The report was compiled by John Rose-Adams, manager of the OU's Centre for Inclusion and Collaborative Partnerships, under the supervision of Michala Robertson, OU Assistant Director of Widening Access and Success.

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  • This report summarises data collected from the first Open University Cinema pilot. This was a collaboration (ongoing as of August 2014) between Open Cinema and the Open University, delivered at SIFA Fireside, a support centre for street homeless people in central Birmingham.

    The OU Cinema model was designed to integrate learning content - presentations by OU lecturers with expertise in areas explored by the films - with a 12-week season of films selected by SIFA Fireside participants. The theme for the season which emerged from these selctions was technology.

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