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ICC 5th Anniversary Symposium

In November 2015, the Institute of Cultural Capital celebrated five years of researching and engaging with cultural and arts policy. To mark this milestone, the institute hosted a symposium at Liverpool John Moores University on 10 November 2015 which showcased its ground-breaking work and explored future research priorities for both the institute and cultural policy research as a whole.

As part of the event, the ICC’s senior research staff each delivered a keynote presentation on a topic relating to one of the institute’s five main research strands (see project downloads), with each of these sessions supported by an expert panel of senior academic researchers, policy-makers and practitioners from the domain of cultural policy and practice.

In the day’s first keynote, Dr. Beatriz García, ICC Head of Research for Cultural Policy, considered the value of longitudinal data gathering and comparative analysis in understanding long-term international cultural policy trends, with expert input provided by panellists Steve Green (Chair, European Capital of Culture Selection Panel), Diane Dodd (Executive Director, International Institute of Gastronomy, Culture, Arts and Tourism) and Dr. Eleonora Belfiore (Director of Studies, Warwick Commission on the Future of Cultural Value).

Keynote 1: International Cultural Policy, City Narratives & Major Events (Dr. Beatriz García)

Following this, ICC Head of Research for Cultural Leadership, Dr. Kerry Wilson, was joined by Professor Kate Oakley from the University of Leeds and Alistair Brown from the Museums Association as she discussed her current and future research within the context of key contemporary debates within the cultural policy field, including overt political instrumentalisation of arts and culture; professional ethics in ‘networked’ collaborative cultural work; and implications for workforce diversity and leadership of the sector.

Keynote 2: Beyond Instrumentalism: Cultural Leadership, Ethics and Values (Dr. Kerry Wilson)

These sessions were followed, in the afternoon, by a series of parallel sessions covering topics as diverse as digital culture, cultural assets and social value, the potential for participatory art to improve employability, and the ‘elusive edge’ of cultural policy, before the day was rounded off by a rousing keynote speech from Professor Jonothan Neelands of the University of Warwick which considered future directions and priorities for cultural policy research as a field of study.

The symposium was attended by over 80 national and international academics and stakeholders, including representatives from the Hull City of Culture team, the Coventry City of Culture bid team, the Museums Association and regional stakeholders, in addition to academic colleagues from leading UK cultural policy centres at Kings College London, City University, Goldsmiths, the University of Leeds, Leeds Beckett University, the University of Manchester, the University of Liverpool and the University of Warwick.

Special thanks to colleagues who shared their thoughts on our research with wider networks via social media – click here for Twitter highlights from the day.

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