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Thinking Collaboratively - Acting Collectively


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Creating a Collaborative Learning Community for Indigenous and Ethno-Racial Artists in Ontario. Presented by Jane Marsland, Independent Arts Consultant at NASO meeting.
February 2016.

Published in: Government & Nonprofit
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Thinking Collaboratively - Acting Collectively

  1. 1. Creating a Collaborative Learning Community for Indigenous and Ethno-Racial Artists in Ontario
  2. 2. Commissioned by CPAMO to:  Undertake literature review to investigate the concept of shared platforms in their broadest context with a particular emphasis on new collaboration systems in both the for-profit sector as well as the arts sector.  Working with CPAMO’s staff, board, and advisory committee, develop preferred collaborative model for CPAMO.  Make recommendations based on results of research.
  3. 3.  Volatility of current environment – rapid change has outpaced our capacity to fully understand it  Increasing interconnectivity and interdependence – complexity of operating environment  Mental models – traditional frames of reference no longer relevant for new context – growth mindset  Shift lens from scarcity to abundance, from self- contained organizations to networks, from stable to flexible/adaptable  What does sustainability really mean in the arts sector and what exactly is it that we are trying to sustain? Are we ready to admit that ‘permanence’ may not be the right goal for arts entities?
  4. 4.  There has been tremendous activity and evolution in the Indigenous and Ethno-racial arts sector – but it’s either not captured or compiled in available research so we don’t have a clear picture of exactly what is happening or how to make sense of it.  Also a sense that Canada is falling behind other countries in scope of research to assist the sector to understand itself  Need for ‘think-tank’ or ‘institute’ to explore/research issues pertinent to this sector in Canada
  5. 5.  Current environment for the arts ranges from volatile to hostile.  Arts entities coming into the arts funding system since 2000 severely undercapitalized – facing historical funding inequities – new funding models required.  Nonprofit charitable corporate foundation model imposed on artists – no other model for public accountability in the 1950’s – but it’s a rigid model – perpetual life - hierarchial
  6. 6.  What kind of system do we need to produce the quality of work you aspire to for the next 25 years? ◦ Fluid and adaptable processes rather than stand alone, closed institutional structures (resource hungry, perpetual, sometimes dysfunctional). ◦ Need for technological platform/ infrastructure to support collaborative practices/processes or sharing
  7. 7.  Metcalf Foundation in collaboration with OTF, OAC and CCA are funding the start up of a Shared Charitable Platform.  Opportunity in CCA’s Strategic Plan – new funding model?  Reimagining and reshaping what an arts venue is and could be for the 21st century: ◦ Reframing arts venue as community hub ◦ Rise of alternative spaces – less expensive, flexible, impermanent, pop-up ◦ Nature of venue influences creativity and the work and defines the experience of the work
  8. 8.  Lack of funding for digital innovation is the largest barrier as technology is the core enabler for many shared/collaborative platforms  Sector unable to afford external suppliers or freelance staff to provide technological solutions  Need for digital tools – shared digital platform built from the ground up  Need to develop arts, technology and research partnerships
  9. 9.  Need for more collaborative/shared platforms  More management providers  Development of producers ◦ Shift in mindset from general manager(institutional) to producer (entrepreneurial)  Cross sectorial/social enterprise models ◦ Fractured Atlas ◦ SMart ◦ ArtsPool ◦ Need to be able to scale up important
  10. 10.  If we as a sector want to develop a ‘sharing economy’ what will be the principles that drive it? ◦ Equity, community and connection ◦ Shared resources and shared ownership ◦ Share solidarity  How can we work together to resist the pressure for more ‘earned revenue’ are we in this to make money or make art/social change  By sharing programs and tools we create reciprocal value – creates larger impact – contributes to sustainability  Ideas spread quickly if information and resources for replicating them widely available – not guarded by single organization.
  11. 11.  If we are working more collaboratively, are the funders able to resolve any emerging challenges – need for additional granting deadlines, micro- loans, concern over ‘double dipping’?  Will the grant application process be able to support collaborative ways of working? ◦ For example, ensure peer assessment process understands new models  What kinds of support do the emerging leaders who want to work collaboratively need?