Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Out of time: things I would have blogged about recently



Here's a few things I've not had time to blog about recently:
  • The usefulness of the word 'elasticity' which came up in the google-translation of a description of my Making adaptive Resilience Real on a Croatian website Kulturpunkt - why didn't I use it in the text? What does the image suggest for people's seemingly binary approach to organisational health? (The seeming binary: funding/alive, cut/dead.)
  • Whether plethora or confusion or coalition or union is the appropriate collective noun for campaigns.
  • Related to that, why I value the arts feels to me a better starting point than Save the arts but neither hits the bull's eye, and the artsfunding 'debate' has become increasingly echo-chamberish. Why? Because it starts from audiences, albeit perhaps arts-based ones, because it suggests less the arts exist because of subsidy and will die without it. Theatre has not, for instance, died because some companies lost their RFO-funding 2 years ago, unless I've missed something. What have been the effects, though, and what does that suggest for thinking through the inevitable?
  • How I signed the petition, but find my optimism about the future of the arts in the conversation where people don't talk about cuts but about change, not the prospect of a debate in Parliament. (Actually, I'm with the doubters about whether even 100,000 signatures really would or should trigger a debate, but even if it happened, when did that last have a real impact on a controversial policy?)
  • How Brendan Barber's speech at the TUC congress felt more realistic, and more challenging, in its suggestion of 5 alternatives to coalition strategy:
    1. a realistic timetable
    2. more flexibility
    3. growth as a priority
    4. a bigger role for tax
    5. a different kind of economy

    Change 'bigger role for tax' to 'clearer role for arts funding investment' and i think that's what the sector could be asking for right now. Campaigning for status quo is not an option
  • the yesthat'srightness of John Kay's piece about economic arguments for arts funding and how naive it makes some arguments both for and against sound
  • the stimulating sessions talking about resilience I've had in Huddersfield and Leeds and will be having in Newcastle and Cambridge next month and what I've learnt. See me in a state of gurning over-stimulation at the end of one of those in this short video courtesy of &Co.

I have, however, been very busy with work and family, so have constantly run out of time, so haven't been keeping you as regularly stimulated as I'd like. As I'm going to be in South Africa working with the Swallows Foundation for the next fortnight, you will either hear next to nothing or very regular updates over the next two weeks. Be prepared for either!

(Lots of songs called 'out of time' - this could even become a regular series - was going to go with Blur but this blue eyed soul is just lovely.)

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