Advocacy advice

This post comes to you from EcoArtScotland

The advice in this column although designed for the arts in the US, applies equally to environment and ecology, suggesting the best tactics to influence politicians, policy-makers and public sector decision-makers.  It highlights the importance of starting the meeting by establishing:

  • the fact that you are a constituent, and that the people you represent are constituents,
  • that you are aware of the political and policy priorities,
  • the benefits that your organisation or service delivers.

The article goes on to focus on the benefits that matter to public bodies:

  • Both arts and ecologies are sources of jobs and economic activity,
  • Arts and ecologies represent resources that improve learning and school systems,
  • Cutting arts and ecologies will not solve public sector budget problems: they represent tiny fractions of overall budgets.

Finally it recommends a team approach to maximise the impact.  This enables the first person to introduce the subject, the second person presents the fact-based evidence.  The third person then contributes a human story of the transforming experience that the arts or environments can have.

ecoartscotland is a resource focused on art and ecology for artists, curators, critics, commissioners as well as scientists and policy makers. It includes ecoartscotland papers, a mix of discussions of works by artists and critical theoretical texts, and serves as a curatorial platform.

It has been established by Chris Fremantle, producer and research associate with On The Edge Research, Gray’s School of Art, The Robert Gordon University. Fremantle is a member of a number of international networks of artists, curators and others focused on art and ecology.

Go to EcoArtScotland