London Knowledge Lab: two new research centres  

By mutual and cordial agreement, the institutional collaboration between UCL and Birkbeck at the London Knowledge Lab has come to an end. UCL and Birkbeck have launched two new research centres, the UCL Knowledge Lab and the Birkbeck Knowledge Lab, which extend the legacy of the London Knowledge Lab. The London Knowledge lab was led since 2004 by Professors Richard Noss and Alex Poulovassilis as a collaborative initiative between computer scientists from Birkbeck and educators from the Institute of Education, funded by the Science Research Investment Fund. Our shared legacy includes over a decade of interdisciplinary research funded by ESRC, EPSRC, AHRC, EU, JISC among others; a variety of knowledge exchange and public engagement activities; and a distinctive postgraduate training programme. We retain our common London Knowledge Lab presence on this website, in recognition of this shared legacy and over a decade of successful interdisciplinary research together.


The London Knowledge Lab was a unique collaboration between two of the UK’s most prominent centres of research – the UCL Institute of Education and Birkbeck.  The Lab brought together computer and social scientists from a very broad range of fields, including:

  • education,
  • sociology,
  • culture and media,
  • semiotics,
  • computational intelligence,
  • information management,
  • personalisation,
  • semantic web
  • ubiquitous technologies. 
This means that issues were tackled from many different perspectives, and this was reflected in our mission, to
  • Understand the place of digital technologies and media in our cultural, social and educational relationships with knowledge – finding, acquiring, creating, and sharing it;
  • Design, build and evaluate systems, processes and interfaces that enhance these relationships; and
  • Examine critically the assumptions about knowledge and learning that underlie the increasingly wide range of applications of digital technologies.

The ways in which we learn, and what we need to know, are changing. Our research aims to explore and invent the roles of technology in this process, and to understand how technology relates to broader social, economic and cultural factors.


Link to Birkbeck, School of Computer Science & Information Systems UCL IOE Logo

Facts and Figures

  • Launched in 2004
  • Funded by £6 million grant from the Science Research Investment Fund 
  • Over 50 researchers worked on 125 research projects 
  • Projects funded by EPSRC, ESRC, JISC, EU and other funding bodies 
  • Located in Bloomsbury, near Birkbeck and the UCL Institute of Education