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Germany: Conference on cultural diversity and environmental sustainability

This post comes to you from Culture|Futures

Germany: Conference on cultural diversity and environmental sustainability – Calling for a more holistic approach to how we perceive the challenges and possibilities in the cultural sector, a conference in Germany sets out to merge aspects and findings concerning cultural diversity and inclusion with the urgent topics of implementing environmental sustainability.

In March 2014, a conference in Germany’s capital Berlin will be exploring how creative industries can simultaneously occupy a central role in promoting and maintaining cultural diversity, social inclusion and environmental sustainability. Speakers and attendees will be discussing the concept of ‘sustainable economic growth’ and how to create jobs and innovation.

“The onset of the global financial crisis has prompted the emergence of creative economies as an attractive and potentially more viable alternative to classical growth strategies,” writes the organisers.

“The components of creative economies, such as new media, performing arts, heritage, design and creative services are beginning to form integral parts of the global economy, allowing for the exploration of innovative resources, which are accessible to developing and developed countries alike.

Creative industries are also redefining the education system and the tourism industry. This is reflected for example in the on-going shift from traditional leisure-based tourism to more dynamic forms, such as cultural, educational and ecological tourism. This diversification of the tourism sector enriches the local, regional and the international economy through its use of creative goods and services and represents an alternative to the domestic, goods-based economy.”

Joint strategies of sustainable economic development
The Berlin/Frankfurt International Economics Congress 2014 seeks to explore and analyze the myriad of opportunities offered by the nurturing of creative industries, while integrating tools of Cultural Diplomacy into the creation and implementation of joint strategies of sustainable economic development.

For instance the conference will focus on issues such as ‘Engaging Developing Countries in the Creative Economy for Sustainable Development’, and ‘Tourism as a Tool for Sustainable Economic Growth’.

Sustainable network of participants
Participation in the conference is open to governmental and diplomatic officials, academics, artists, journalists, civil society practitioners, private sector representatives, young professionals and students as well as other interested individuals from across the world.

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During the conference, the participants will have a number of opportunities to network with one another, with the speakers, and with ICD Advisory Board Members and partners. Conference participants will become part of the ICD Alumni, a growing international network of people of diverse interests and backgrounds from around the world who share a commitment to intercultural exchange.

The Berlin International Economics Congress: ‘Global Trends in Creative Economies: Education, Entrepreneurship and Tourism as Drivers of Sustainable Economic Growth’ in Berlin on 5-7 March 2014.

» More information: http://www.culturaldiplomacy.org/academy/index.php?en_biec-2014

Culture|Futures is an international collaboration of organizations and individuals who are concerned with shaping and delivering a proactive cultural agenda to support the necessary transition towards an Ecological Age by 2050.

The Cultural sector that we refer to is an interdisciplinary, inter-sectoral, inter-genre collaboration, which encompasses policy-making, intercultural dialogue/cultural relations, creative cities/cultural planning, creative industries and research and development. It is those decision-makers and practitioners who can reach people in a direct way, through diverse messages and mediums.

Affecting the thinking and behaviour of people and communities is about the dissemination of stories which will profoundly impact cultural values, beliefs and thereby actions. The stories can open people’s eyes to a way of thinking that has not been considered before, challenge a preconceived notion of the past, or a vision of the future that had not been envisioned as possible. As a sector which is viewed as imbued with creativity and cultural values, rather than purely financial motivations, the cultural sector’s stories maintain the trust of people and society.
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AV Festival Announces ‘Extraction’ as 2014 Festival Theme

This post comes from Creative Carbon Scotland
EXTRACTION is the theme for the sixth edition of AV Festival in 2014, reflecting the subterranean map of the region from the mudstones, shales and coals of the Carboniferous coal measures, to the Ice Age boulder clay and marine limestone of the coast.

AV Festival 14: EXTRACTION presents the work of artists who are re-imagining the geologic by responding to the natural landscape of the North East and beyond, from Neolithic rock art and glacial erosion to the remnants of the coal mining and minerals industries, and modern concerns with the global exploitation of material resources.  Through contemporary art, sound, music and film, the biennial event explores the raw materials that create our experience of the world, from their origins deep inside the earth, to their extraction and transformation through artistic, industrial and manufacturing processes.

The programme for 2014 features new commissions, UK premieres, solo exhibitions, group shows, concerts and film screenings by international and nationally renowned artists.

Running from 1 – 31 March 2014, the Festival includes over 10 exhibitions and over 50 concerts and film screenings, at venues including mima, Middlesbrough; Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art, Sunderland; Sage Gateshead, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art; Laing Art Gallery, Tyneside Cinema, Star and Shadow Cinema, Castle Keep, the Mining Institute and other places in Newcastle as well as found spaces across the region.

To find out more visit: http://www.avfestival.co.uk/

Image: Lara Almarcegui, The Last Coal Extraction in Newcastlehttp://www.avfestival.co.uk/news/av-festival-14-announces-first-public-event-for-december-2013

The post AV Festival Announces ‘Extraction’ as 2014 Festival Theme appeared first on Creative Carbon Scotland.

Creative Carbon Scotland is a partnership of arts organisations working to put culture at the heart of a sustainable Scotland. We believe cultural and creative organisations have a significant influencing power to help shape a sustainable Scotland for the 21st century.

In 2011 we worked with partners Festivals Edinburgh, the Federation of Scottish Threatre and Scottish Contemporary Art Network to support over thirty arts organisations to operate more sustainably.

We are now building on these achievements and working with over 70 cultural organisations across Scotland in various key areas including carbon management, behavioural change and advocacy for sustainable practice in the arts.

Our work with cultural organisations is the first step towards a wider change. Cultural organisations can influence public behaviour and attitudes about climate change through:

Changing their own behaviour;
Communicating with their audiences;
Engaging the public’s emotions, values and ideas.

Go to Creative Carbon Scotland

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Sea Stories: Online Cultural Map for Barra

This post comes from Creative Carbon Scotland

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Launched on 16th Nov 2013, ‘Sgeulachdan na Mara / Sea Stories’ is an innovative interactive map that reveals Barra’s rich local knowledge, language and culture through the voices and experiences of the local community.

Visitors to the map are encouraged to explore the audio, video, images and stories in any order they like and within a couple of clicks they can learn about Barra’s shipwrecks, listen to traditional songs, view images of the island’s dramatic landscape or even hear stories about lifeboat landings during the war.

Developed by artist Stephen Hurrel and social ecologist Ruth Brennan, in association with Voluntary Action Barra & Vatersay (VABV), central to gathering content for the project was local school pupils interviewing local Barra fishermen and older members of the community – a successful collaboration that’s set to continue in years to come.

Housed in Barra’s Heritage Centre, the Sea Stories cultural map is now a permanent feature within the community and will be updated as further ‘sea stories’ are gathered by Castlebay School’s media students in the future. It will also be accessible to the public at local cultural events and to the wider world online via the project website. Sea Stories: Barra is also featured in the current exhibition ‘Sea Change’ at the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh organised by Cape Farewell.

Sgeulachdan na Mara / Sea Stories was funded through Creative Scotland’s First in a Lifetime programme and Comunn na Gaidhlig with support from The Marine Alliance for Science and Technology for Scotland.

The post Sea Stories: Online Cultural Map for Barra appeared first on Creative Carbon Scotland.

Creative Carbon Scotland is a partnership of arts organisations working to put culture at the heart of a sustainable Scotland. We believe cultural and creative organisations have a significant influencing power to help shape a sustainable Scotland for the 21st century.

In 2011 we worked with partners Festivals Edinburgh, the Federation of Scottish Threatre and Scottish Contemporary Art Network to support over thirty arts organisations to operate more sustainably.

We are now building on these achievements and working with over 70 cultural organisations across Scotland in various key areas including carbon management, behavioural change and advocacy for sustainable practice in the arts.

Our work with cultural organisations is the first step towards a wider change. Cultural organisations can influence public behaviour and attitudes about climate change through:

Changing their own behaviour;
Communicating with their audiences;
Engaging the public’s emotions, values and ideas.

Go to Creative Carbon Scotland

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New Thinktank: alice

Via Julie’s Bicycle.

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On the 26th November Julie’s Bicycle launched, with think tank Meteos and 100 exceptional women, alice.

Launched in November 2013 by one hundred women from across a variety of different backgrounds, industries and age groups, alice seeks to articulate what good leadership looks like, and empower and support its manifestation.

alice is a new leadership voice fit to deal with the urgent and accumulating social and environmental challenges we face.

alice is a movement founded on a shared sense that we need new leadership. Instead of today’s ego-driven, zero-sum ethos, we need a leadership that is collegiate, distributed and generous. It needs to have the ambition to find collective and durable solutions to the common obstacles we face.

alice is an expression of this ambition, the protagonist that drives this movement. Her anonymous voice will publicly reward, challenge and inspire the leadership behaviours we need. She will support and empower the manifestation of these values.

Julie’s Bicycle is currently coordinating alice in partnership with Meteos. The movement brings together women who exemplify the passion, drive and desire for change articulated above.

If you have any questions contact info@juliesbicycle.com for more information.

How can I get involved?

Share your stories of exemplary leadership on Twitter using #alice.

LTC GREEN AWARDS 2013

Via Julie’s Bicycle.

Julie’s Bicycles’ 3 year sustainability partnership with the London Theatre Consortium, a network of thirteen producing theatres, is coming to a close.  Each year they recognise amazing achievement with the LTC Green Awards and in 2013 the winners were:

Green Venue of the Year Battersea Arts Centre
for integrating environmental thinking across all project teams, and their capital redevelopment project.

Most Improved Venue Young Vic
for their sustainable production pilot, After Miss Julie, and proven emissions reductions.

Greatest Emissions Reduction Theatre Royal Stratford East
for an outstanding reduction of 47% in relative energy emissions.

Since 2010 the LTC has collectively reduced absolute energy emissions by 10% and saved over 350 tonnes of CO2e.

And if you want to get invigorated browse the case studies section of the Julie’s Bicycle website.

Central’s Sustainable Cabaret Wins Green Gown Award

Via News / Julie’s Bicycle.

The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama has won a 2013 Green Gown Award for work on its sustainable pilot production of the musical ‘Cabaret’.

The Green Gown Awards are an annual celebration of sustainability best practice organised by the Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges. The accolade, presented at a ceremony at Derby College on 12th November, recognised Central’s achievement in staging the production using sustainable methods and in considering and measuring the environmental impact and carbon footprint of each stage of production. The initiative, a pilot programme for Central, was undertaken in partnership with Julie’s Bicycle.

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Central staff and students involved in ‘Cabaret’ collect the award at the prestigious ceremony in Derby.

Central’s Environment and Safety Manager Susanne Page said ‘As a small, specialist performing arts institution, recognition from outside our niche profession, for an Award that recognises how creativity and sustainability can complement one another, further inspires and energises the continued nurturing of sustainable practices within our theatrical community’.

The judges particularly recognised the project for its role in bringing education for sustainable development to a novel and unusual setting, and they highlighted the scheme’s capacity to shape future practice.

Research undertaken by the students throughout the pilot contributed to the Julie’s Bicycle Sustainable Production Guide, a practical toolkit now available to arts organisations globally via the Julie’s Bicycle website as a guide to reducing their environmental impacts in production and to promote sustainability.  The work will also help to enable effective integration of sustainability into Central’s general curriculum and across future productions, and it has inspired the students involved to carry this knowledge and experience into their professional careers and make a wider, lasting impact on the industry.

Sholeh Johnston, Arts Manager at Julie’s Bicycle, who provided training and mentoring for students involved in the project said ‘The necessary shift towards a sustainable cultural sector is enabled through projects like Central’s Cabaret pilot. The learning and best practice explored by staff and students at Central is now providing practical information and inspiration to other student and professional practitioners. This award celebrates their commitment, and will hopefully galvanize others to get involved with this incredibly exciting movement – one that embodies the best of our sector’s creativity and ingenuity in finding and scaling up more sustainable approaches to theatre making.’

Read more about Central’s production of ‘Cabaret’ in Julie’s Bicycle case study.

Julie’s Bicycle be working with Central on their next ‘green’ production of ‘Greece’ in 2014.

Shambala Festival

Via Julie’s Bicycle.

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Set in a picturesque country park in Northamptonshire, the environment has always been central to the ethos of Shambala Festival.  The event is now firmly established as a focus for innovation in sustainable technologies and the more elusive “science” of drawing people into a deeper dialogue about the environmental sustainability issues confronting us all today.

For these reasons, Shambala was the first organisation ever to achieve a 3 star Industry Green certification from Julie’s Bicycle in 2010, and has most recently been awarded a 3 star IG certification for the 2013 festival too. In fact, the festival has scooped three 3 star Industry Green certifications over the last four years!

Shambala also won the A Greener Festival outstanding award for 2013.

Shambala has been undertaking independent carbon auditing since 2007, and thanks to a partnership with Peter Harper, Head of Research at the Centre for Alternative Technology, the scope of their studies has been even broader than our Industry Green assessment, including factors such as staff and concession travel and camping equipment, examining the life-span of the materials used to construct stages, and even guestimating how much more people might drink at a festival compared to a typical weekend at home! Building on a decrease in emissions per audience member of 20% between 2007 and 2008, Shambala has reduced carbon emissions per audience by an outstanding 81% (based on energy, water, waste water and waste) between 2009 and 2013, with a 32% reduction between 2012 and 2013 alone.

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TOWARDS 100% RENEWABLE POWER

This reduction reflects Shambala’s ambition to becoming 100% renewably powered. In 2008 Shambala aimed to use 100% waste vegetable oil (WVO) bio-diesel across the site (not-with-standing that WVO bio-diesel is not a renewable power source) but had issues with power consistency and experienced power-outs. Since 2010 Shambala has experienced relative success with a transition to 95% non-mineral based power through the use of WVO bio-diesel and six micro renewable energy suppliers on site, alongside diesel and gas sources. In 2010 the festival supplied solar showers and composting toilets.

The festival is now 94% renewably powered. In 2013 the festival also teamed up with its power provider, Midas, and De Montfort University on a new pilot project to monitor fuel use for individual generators, looking to improve fuel efficiency across the site. The learning from this will be shared via the Powerful Thinking initiative.

MANAGING WASTE

They have also developed a robust waste reduction and management approach, and increased recycling rates by 10% between 2012 and 2013. This has been greatly supported by a high level of both trader and audience engagement, including campaigns such as Bring a Bottle – their most successful audience engagement ever, with the sale of water in plastic bottles banned onsite completely – and Surplus Supper Club.

AUDIENCE TRAVEL EMISSIONS

The biggest environmental impact produced by festivals is audience travel. As Shambala’s energy emissions decrease, so the proportional impact of their audience emissions has increased, from 53% in 2009 to 90% of the festival’s total emissions in 2010. Audience travel remains a challenge: an audience travel survey in 2010 showed that 79% travelled by car – although with an average occupancy of 3 people they are well above the average (2.6). 10% travelled by train, 8% by dedicated coaches, 3% by public transport bus, and 0.2% by short-haul flights. While the festival isn’t in direct control of audience choices on issues such as travel, Shambala has a number of initiatives that aim to reduce these emissions and encourage more festival-goers onto public transport, including a biofiel shuttle bus service from the local train and bus station and subidised express coaches from 6 cities. If audiences can see busing as a realistic travel option there is huge potential to reduce emissions.

The festival has introduced a range of initiatives to promote the use of public transport, car and lift sharing to its audience, to reduce their travel impacts. The team have been building on the Carbon Travel Fund they introduced to provide festival-goers with an alternative travel offset option, and are working with The Converging World on investing in wind power projects, looking at a new model for offsetting all festival emissions.

Shambala’s environmental priorities are communicated to the audiences online and on site, and a recent survey highlighted that the festival’s audience does feel strongly about the environment; the website, press releases, emails, event programme, the ticket buying process and the festival site all reflect the environmental credentials of the festival, and on the Sunday of each festival the organisers run a ‘People’s Parliament’ for audiences to comment on their ‘green credentials’ and feed back on how the festival is run.

LOCALLY-SOURCED PRODUCTS AND MATERIALS

Shambala is going beyond the minimum requirements of their own commitment to environmental performance through work with the supply chain that supports the festival, requiring contractors and traders to complete questionnaires and comply with a sustainability checklist for tendering. ‘Green’ trader assessments and awards are also undertaken.

Ambitious policies to reuse materials and enforce traders to source produce locally were partially met in 2009, and in 2010 these policies were communicated to all artists, creative projects and area/venue managers. This procurement policy on traders means that produce has to be ethically sourced with a preference for small/local suppliers, resulting in fairtrade tea and coffee and happy meat and a priority for organic traders, while all construction timber has to be FSC certified. Preference is also given to traders who are powering themselves self sufficiently and the local community is invited to trade via a community letter.

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FROM THE ORGANISERS…

Shambala Coordinator Chris Johnson believes “festivals have a key role in inspiring behavioural change in society. Our challenge is finding the most effective ways to communicate sustainable messages to festival goers, by virtue of the way we manage events, how we communicate this, and the content of the events.”

“Good auditing provides the information we need to make informed decisions about where to concentrate our efforts in reducing carbon, and how successful initiatives have been year on year” says Jen Coles, Shambala’s Sustainability Coordinator.

Over the years, the efforts of Shambala have provided new insights into innovation on how to run a more sustainable festival. The ambitious sustainability policy of Shambala provides a guiding light in educating, inspiring and motivating the festival sector as a whole. Shambala have taken this role one step further by co-founding the Powerful Thinking initiative, a festival industry think-do tank exploring game-changing ideas for responding to climate change.

Julie’s Bicycle embarks on cross-European workshops as part of the Green Art Lab Alliance

Via News / Julie’s Bicycle.

Julie’s Bicycle has embarked on a series of cross-European workshops on sustainability and the visual arts, with a session in Spain, organised by artist residency resource hub Art Motile and hosted by the Museum of Contemporary Art in La Coruna, Galicia. As part of the Green Art Lab Alliance (GALA), Julie’s Bicycle will be working with local arts organisations in seven European countries – from Scotland to Serbia – to identify realistic steps that address the environmental sustainability implications of artistic work, operations, and engagement with the wider public.

The workshop at La Coruna had a special focus on the role of artist residencies, with a fascinating and inspiring talk from Joya: arte + ecología, an arts organisation based at an off-grid converted farmhouse in a national park in Andalucía. Joya: arte + ecología’s latest project is Sistemas Efímeros ephemeral systems – an arts-led, trans-disciplinary collaborative project that explores the perception of the natural value of arid landscapes, while promoting sustainable and transferable adaptations to land use and water resources at a time of rapid environmental change.

With the support of the Culture Programme of the European Union.

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Julie’s Bicycle on the Road

Via Julie’s Bicycle.

Throughout November and December Julie’s Bicycles’ Environmental Sustainability team has been touring the UK, carrying out a series of workshops for Arts Council England organisations. Kicking off at the Shed at National Theatre London, they’ve been as far as Sage Gateshead, Leeds Art Gallery, mac Birmingham, Bristol Old Vic, Free Word London and Cornerhouse Manchester.

Feedback and results have been encouraging with 83% of attendees agreeing workshops were excellent or good. Thanks to everyone who has hosted or joined one of the 13 sessions across the country over this Autumn.

The team have also been sharing results and learnings from the first year of environmental reporting with Arts Council Relationship Managers, including next steps and how they can support organisations alongside Julie’s Bicycle. Julie’s Bicycle has already visited London, the North East, the West Midlands, Yorkshire and the North West, and will be visiting the East, South East and South West offices in early 2014.