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29.05.14

VA now a partner of AHRC funded "cultural intermediation" project

Building on our previous Square Mile project, Visiting Arts is now a partner with the Universities of Birmingham, Manchester and Salford on a three-year project looking at ‘cultural intermediation’. The project is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) as part of its Connected Communities programme.

Cultural intermediation is a process which connects different kinds of communities into the creative economy and wider society. It plays a critical role in raising aspirations, upskilling and building confidence, all of which are vital to allow people to engage with and benefit from one of the most dynamic sectors of the contemporary UK economy. Our Square Mile project exemplified this by working with people and neighbourhoods, co-commissioning local artists and creating international residencies for artists, who were then linked online to communities working in China, India, Pakistan, Iran, South Africa, Canada and 6 British cities.

Acknowledging the importance of cultural intermediation, the research asks to what extent these processes meet the needs of urban communities in the 21st century and how they might operate more effectively.  The aim of the research is to discover how the value of cultural intermediation can be captured and how this activity can be enhanced to create more effective connection between communities and the creative economy. Academically the research will make a major contribution to debates on: creativity and valuation; the historical evolution of the creative economy; governance and localism; practice-based methods; and the role of culture in connecting communities.

For more information and some of the outputs of this project, please visit the project website here.

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