The Cultural Policy and Management Research Center (KPY) of İstanbul Bilgi University is one of the first policy-oriented research centres in Turkey in the field of cultural policy and cultural management. KPY addresses the fast changing cultural scene in Turkey, aiming to be a hub for academic exchange and excellence, to develop research-based policy advice and to function as an observatory of cultural trend.A central mission of KPY thus is to act as capacity building centre, where local and transnational research, policy thinking and training opportunities in the cultural policy and management fields are gathered, disseminated and exchanged.

Cultural Policy and Management Yearbook has been published since 2009 by KPY. Every issue hosts analysis and critical essays, reviews, on prominent trends, ideas and dynamics that had shaped the cultural management and policy field in the past year from around the world and from Turkey. The most recent 2012-2013 issue focuses on the way in which cultural operators have been instrumental in bringing about change and renewal in the cultural scene in the context of and in response to the present situation of social change and crisis. The current crisis has both economic and political dimensions. On the one hand, there is the economic slowdown caused by the financial crisis in Europe and the United States; on the other, there is the political crisis, known as the ‘Arab Spring’, which began in 2011 with the overthrow of the governments in Tunisia and Egypt and which continued on into Libya. Whether economic or political, these crises have affected many countries from North Africa to the United States, including Spain and Greece. Their most important effect has been the emergence of a continuing political activism in which a wide spectrum of ordinary people have taken to the streets. Civil society activism is spreading as a global phenomenon and cities are assuming new roles as stages of democratic visibility.

The content of the 2012-2013 issue includes:

  • The Role of New Cultural Strategies In the Times of Crisis: Interview with Doris Pack
  • Interview by Philipp Dietachmair
  • Curatorial Strategies in the Chaging Cultural Climate of Serbia: Interview with Zoran Erić
  • Interview by Ferhat Özgür
  • Nadia Von Maltzahn and Rana Yazajı: Syrian Culture in Turbulent Times
  • Saki Bailey and Maria Edgarda Marcucci: Legalizing the Occupation: The Teatro Valle as a Cultural Commons
  • Sanjin Dragojević and Vitomira Lončar: Leadership in Arts and Culture in Croatia and a Paradigm Shift
  • Maximilian Hartmuth: A Civil Society Initiative in the Current Crisis of Cultural Institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina:cultureshutdownnet
  • Goran Tomka: Serbian Cultural Managers on Crowdfunding – Context, Fears and Hopes
  • Corinna Vosse: New Economic Practice in Creative Scenes – Crowdfunding and Coworking
  • Cultural Governance: From Challenges to Changes – CultureWatchEurope Meeting
  • Baiba Tjarve: Decentralisation of Culture in Latvia during the Transition Period, 1991-2010: Institutional Transformations
  • Lidia Varbanova: Sustainability Aspects of Cultural Entrepreneurship

See other reviews in the Yearbook here: http://yillik.bilgikpy.com/en/

My article on Sustainability Aspects of Cultural Entrepreneurship looks at the application of entrepreneurial theories in the cultural sector, differences between business, social and cultural entrepreneurs; the sustainable dimensions of cultural projects and events and the role of entrepreneurs in caring about sustainability in the management practice of start-up companies. I examine two internationally recognized arts organizations based in Montreal: the Montreal Jazz Festival and Cirque du Soleil, which implement effective management actions and strategies towards sustainability and “global citizenship”. The article analyses also international collaborative approaches to sustainability in the arts, the role of the young entrepreneurs and leaders in promoting sustainability, and the importance of online platforms for fostering the sustainability dialogue and actions across the world.

The article outlines five important strategic areas where joined further actions are required:

  • First of all, there is a need in many countries to bring the cultural dimension of sustainability at the agenda of policy-makers through collective advocacy actions. Policy makers still consider culture and arts as a “luxury” area to be subsidized, but not as an essence of our sustainable future.
  • Second, business companies are still far away of including arts and culture projects into their corporate social responsibility strategies. It is important to convey the message that cultural and artistic life of communities is equally important as their education, health and well being is.
  • Third, at strategic organisational level, there is a need to incorporate sustainability and environmental policy as part of the strategic plans of cultural organisations, both business and nonprofit ones.
  • Fourth, Funding organisations need to review their policies and guidelines to improve the support of projects considering environmental criteria in addition to artistic and financial one, and to also ensure that environmental sustainability is a core issue in their strategic development.
  • Fifth, collaboration between artists and educational institutions is essential in order to foster experimental learning. There is a need to elaborate and implement innovative educational approaches for working with children and youth, as well as new training approaches incorporating sustainability into arts management courses and programs. Young people are the ambassadors of the sustainable development messages and without their understanding and active engagement we couldn’t succeed.

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