Scotland Plans to Make Culture Central to Policy-Making

The Clyde Arch in Glasgow, Scotland. | Image: Giuseppe Milo via VisualHunt.

The Clyde Arch in Glasgow, Scotland. | Image: Giuseppe Milo via VisualHunt.

Scotland has introduced a new cultural strategy that holds culture as essential to Scotland's social and economic prosperity. The draft consultation was published in late June and can be found here.

The document outlines changes such as the institution of a cultural advisor, new funding models, and democratization via participatory community decision-making. The strategy "places culture as of equal importance alongside other areas such as the economy, education, environment, health and tackling inequality, and values culture for the unique perspectives it can bring.” The plan will also promote the idea of everyday creativity and the acknowledgment of all people as creative beings.

According to ArtsProfessional, whose coverage of the strategy can be found here, the document "is framed around three vision statements: transforming Scotland’s cultural, social and economic prosperity through culture; empowering people and communities by opening up access to culture; and sustaining culture so that the sector can flourish." The plan is the result an extensive public consultation process, which continues as the community is invited to give feedback on the draft strategy.

Among the major initiatives are the aforementioned institution of a new cultural advisor, who will be responsible for "[responding] to big societal issues and [making] culture central to progress in areas such as health, the economy and education"; and the development of a national partnership for culture, "which would see the sector work with academics to develop new approaches to measuring and articulating the value of culture."

The strategy will also explore new funding models including "examining the potential of Scottish Government powers such as Scottish National Investment Bank, devolved tax and legislative powers," as well as "supporting leadership skills development; improving the 'economic and social status' of freelance cultural workers; and increasing inclusive opportunities."

Public consultations on the strategy will continue until September, with the final strategy to be released in late 2018.

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