Cultural Innovation

Another buzzword in Europe is ”Innovation”. A word making the eyes of policy makers, economists and others shine with expectation. Last year in Europe was dedicated to the year of Creativity and Innovation and the creativity around how to get the attention from the EU Commission was interesting to follow.

As was said on the Forum of Cultural Industries in Barcelona recently, cultural and creative industries are still high on the priority list among cultural ministers in Europe. And with this also the question of how you could foster creativity and innovation within art and culture.  KEA European Affairs was commissioned last year by EU to do a study showing with facts how culture in itself had an impact on creativity.  Interesting, but is culture and art necessary always creative? And for the concept of innovation we are often stuck with the classical understanding of the word; as an invention you get patented, often found within medicine and technique. Structures are built to support and foster creative ideas within these fields, often together with technical Universities.

c_innovation_webHow does that apply on cultural products and artistic expressions? Very few of these can be patented. What would be innovation in a cultural and artistic context? What is cultural innovation? Where is the driving force for (cultural) change in society? How does cultural innovation happen?

On a meeting last week with one of the finance and support structures for SME’s put up by the Swedish state, two things were evident. They had never given finance support to cultural entrepreneurs as they could remember, and on a discussion on innovative ideas, art and culture was not on the agenda.

In May and June, Region Västra Götaland will host Arvind Lodaya, Senior Faculty and Dean, Research at Sristhi School of Art, Design and Tecnology, and an artist from Bangalore (India) as a visiting Professor. His working place will be Nätverkstan and his main focus is cultural innovation. Two seminars will be held in Göteborg to explore the topic together with participants.

Download the invitation here: Cultural_Innovation.pdf . You can also download a discussion paper by Mr Arvind Lodaya here: arvindlodaya_discussionnote.pdf. More can be read of Arvind Lodaya and Srishti School of Art, Design and Technology here. and here The residence is part of the programme Linking Initiatives, a cooperation between the state of Karnataka and Region Västra Götaland.

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Lotta Lekvall
Director of Nätverkstan, a Cultural Organisation in Sweden. Nätverkstan provides services …

Cultural and Social Entrepreneurship

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