Alice Sachrajda

Creative researcher and storyteller

Covid-19 – an unfolding story that hasn’t been written yet. How can we shape the narrative?


How do you feel right now? Upbeat, hopeful, motivated? I dearly hope so, but I’m willing to bet over the past few weeks you’ve experienced a flood of emotions that have made you feel anxious, upset, stretched and downright overwhelmed. Covid-19 is global and yet it’s local. It’s microscopic and yet having maximum macro-impact. We’re immobilised and yet frantically working. It’s confusing and unsettling to say the least.

But, and here’s the hopeful bit, it also presents an unprecedented opportunity to catalyse on this moment of connection, and we must not let it slip through our fingers. The way we respond strategically, now and in the coming months, will shape how others refer to the story of this time, and how we relate to one another in the future.

Continue reading “Covid-19 – an unfolding story that hasn’t been written yet. How can we shape the narrative?”

Odyssey Stories #allthatweshare

Screen Shot 2019-05-24 at 13.30.48
When I’m travelling on the London Underground, I often wonder at the magic of the tantalising stories all around me. Maybe I’m just irrepressibly curious, but I can’t help myself from thinking about the journeys of my fellow passengers. I imagine your life: where you’ve come from and where you’re going. I can see hints of your story in the expression on your face, in your choice of clothes, or in your reading material. I ponder your ups and your downs, your twists and turns. And I like to think about what we share – is it our sense of humour? Our favourite food? Being a sibling? A parent? A Londoner? A creative soul? A hopeful dreamer? 

Several years ago, Alex Glennie (my former IPPR colleague and long-time friend and collaborator) and I began to nurture the kernel of a new idea. We both share a fascination for the transformative power of stories, and we began to explore how we could share stories in public places. This was borne out of the belief that sharing stories helps us to understand one another better, and to live well together. In these early stages, we thought about the journeys we make every day, which, knitted together, make up the bigger picture of our life.

And then we hit upon the idea of sharing stories in travel locations. We reflected on our daily journeys: the time when we are not at home and not yet at our destination. It’s a place where we cogitate and muse, and travel locations are democratic spaces, where anyone can go. We began to ask ourselves: could we reflect on someone else’s life journey while we go about our daily journey? Could transport hubs play a role in connecting people as well as places?

Continue reading “Odyssey Stories #allthatweshare”

Pictures worth thousands of words – in praise of the graphic novel

I’ve been a fan of graphic novels ever since I forayed into writing Be Here Now while at IPPR. Admittedly you could hardly call Be Here Now a novel, a collection of illustrated short stories is more accurate. But experimenting with storyboarding my research findings, and then working with an illustrator to bring them to life, sparked my interest in this medium. Illustration takes a story into an exhilarating and absorbing new dimension. Graphic novels can powerfully layer insight and meaning through the tones, shading and visual depiction of emotion.


Continue reading “Pictures worth thousands of words – in praise of the graphic novel”

Riding the Waves: Catalysing social and environmental change through pop culture

Guest blog for Dev Comms Lab, published May 2018

Unless you’re living as a hermit in the Outer Hebrides then the chances are pop culture is shaping your thoughts, feelings and ideas about the world around you. Whether it’s television, film, sport, fashion or food, our shared mainstream culture plays a fundamental role in shaping our identity and guiding our attitudes and beliefs.

Continue reading “Riding the Waves: Catalysing social and environmental change through pop culture”

Uproar, outrage and celebrity endorsement: Pop culture’s role pushing feminism into the mainstream

Last year I worked with the Women’s Budget Group to produce some creative resources about feminist economics. When researching the content I was inspired by Katrine Marçal’s book ‘Who cooked Adam Smith’s dinner?’ Do read and share the Women’s Budget Group resources, available here, and if you’re interested to read more, then I thoroughly recommend Marçal’s book. Caroline Criado-Perez gives it a glowing endorsement: “I genuinely believe that if everyone read Katrine Marçal’s book, patriarchy would crumble…”


Continue reading “Uproar, outrage and celebrity endorsement: Pop culture’s role pushing feminism into the mainstream”

The Social Change Project: Creativity, social change and the role of popular culture

Guest blog for The Sheila McKechnie Foundation, published December 2017

Over the past year, I’ve been researching how popular culture can be a driver for social change in the UK. Ever since I started working on this subject there have been endless questions buzzing around my head: How do cultural movements come about? Who shapes our pop culture in the UK? How can we connect with the people who influence our culture? And how do you even define ‘pop culture’ anyway?!

Continue reading “The Social Change Project: Creativity, social change and the role of popular culture”

Light, Hope and the Promise of Pop Culture: Platforma, Newcastle 2017


As the sun beamed through the windows of the St John the Baptist church in Newcastle this morning, the people gathered in the pews were bathed in lustrous hues of aquamarine, magenta, tangerine and luminous yellow. It felt like an auspicious moment for the Platforma Festival, a celebration of creativity and the arts by and about refugees and migrants. The festival is organised biennially by Counterpoints Arts and this year’s programme is set to enthrall and inspire in equal measure across the north east of England.

Continue reading “Light, Hope and the Promise of Pop Culture: Platforma, Newcastle 2017”

Harnessing the power of stories: the ‘Trojan horse’ of engagement

Guest blog for Engagement 2017 conference, published May 23 2017

What’s the best way to persuade others of your point of view? That’s the question academics, politicians, activists and many other change-makers are grappling with in our increasingly interconnected world. At a time when we are saturated on a daily basis with endless information and data, the question of how we carry out effective and persuasive engagement is becoming increasingly salient.

Continue reading “Harnessing the power of stories: the ‘Trojan horse’ of engagement”

Belonging – my story

I love listening to other people’s stories. It is a deep and special privilege of a researcher to capture so much insight into other people’s lives. Earlier this year I decided to reverse the process and spend some time thinking about how to tell and share my story.

I signed up to a We Video online course run by StoryCenter. It was a thoroughly rewarding and fun experience – thank you Rob, Dascha and the rest of the team at StoryCenter! The StoryCenter methodology is based on the work of Joe Lambert, a pioneer in digital storytelling. His book, Digital Storytelling: Capturing lives, creating community is a must-read for anyone interested in creative storytelling.

So here it is, my identity story, weaving together the things that have affected me and matter most to me in my life: Belonging.

Screen Shot 2017-08-15 at 17.34.12

Everyone has a story…


Blog at

Up ↑