Thursday, 16 June 2011

Valuing the arts in an age of austerity (21/June)

Angus Kennedy, Dr Patricia Allmer and John Summers will discuss how the arts sector can ensure quality in the midst of dramatic budget cuts
The Arts in general have always had a difficult time in attracting public and private funding for their activities, but with widespread cuts in public spending budgets, including the arts, financial considerations on which productions and organisations will and which won't go ahead will be more difficult than recently. The economic crisis and subsequent funding cuts are forcing many in the arts to reappraise how they argue the case for funding.

The Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS) is investigating techniques to assess the economic value of the arts, what it terms non-market goods, in terms of what people feel they would be willing to pay for things if they were not free.

And the February 2011 Royal Society for the Arts (RSA) pamphlet entitled 'Arts Funding, Austerity and the Big Society: Remaking the case for the arts' states:

"The Commission on 2020 Public Services at the RSA has called for more public investment to be evaluated in terms of a ‘social productivity test’: whether it builds individual and community engagement, resilience and reciprocity."

Whilst the pamphlet sets out to define a daring and bold response to the challenge presented by the cuts in funding, is there something wanting in the solutions offered? This discussion aims to challenge the participation approach of chasing audiences in favour of more compelling reasons why the arts should receive public funding and ask some difficult questions such as: just how should we value the arts? Are the arts a luxury or a necessity? Do they have intrinsic value or are they best assessed in terms of outcome and impact? Does what the public think they want or like matter or should we fund the arts regardless? Do the arts even need or deserve public funding at all?

The Shakespeare Pub, 16 Fountain Street, Manchester, M2 2AA at 7:15pm for a 7:30pm start. A charge of £5 (£3 concession) to cover costs incurred will be payable in advance by using the PayPal Donate button on the left hand side of Manchester Salon website (feel free to donate on top of the £5 ticket), but can also be paid for on the night if booked in advance by Emailing e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

No comments:

Post a Comment