Topics and Themes

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Ecological sustainability


D’Art Topic No. 34b: The arts and environmental sustainability: an international overview (Full Report)
D’Art Topic No. 34b: The arts and environmental sustainability: an international overview (Executive Summary)
D'Art Topics in Arts Policy no.34b, November 2014

En español: Informe D’Art 34b - Las artes y la sostenibilidad medioambiental: una perspectiva internacional
En français: Rapport D’Art 34b : Les arts et la viabilité environnementale : un aperçu international 

The arts and its connection to environmental sustainability has been a topic of interest for IFACCA for several years. In the context of global debates on climate change and the role of government and international agencies in setting targets and strategies, it is appropriate to consider the role of government agencies with responsibility for supporting arts and culture. 

Over the last two years, Julie’s Bicycle and IFACCA have been working in partnership to develop resources aimed at informing international arts leaders about global developments in policies and programmes related to culture and environmental sustainability, and how these impact on national arts and cultural organisations.

D’Art Report 34b is the result of surveys and interviews carried out by Julie’s Bicycle and IFACCA between November 2013 and May 2014 and supplemented with desk-based research. The report provides a snapshot of national policymakers’ level of engagement with environmental sustainability with an emphasis on policies, not on artistic content or wider arts practice.  A draft of the report was discussed at the CEO Leadership Seminar in Santiago in January 2014.

D'Art Topic No.34: Arts and ecological sustainability
D'Art Topics in Arts Policy no.34, February 2009

In 2009, Arts Council England and IFACCA worked together to collate examples of good practice in supporting artists or arts organisations with creative and practical responses to ecological concerns such as environmental sustainability and climate change. Arts Council England also hoped to identify potential partners with whom to develop work in this area.

See the question here. The question is also available in Spanish: Pregunta D’Art 34: Las artes y la sostenibilidad ambiental


ASEF presents new Guides on art and sustainability at ArtCOP21

ASEF presents Creative Responses to Sustainability,a new series of guides mapping cultural initiatives engaging with social and environmental issues in different countries. Authored by Ms Yasmine OSTENDORF, the coordinator of the EU-funded network Green Art Lab Alliance (GALA), the first two guides for Singapore and Korea will feature a country directory of the most pioneering and significant cultural organisations contributing to social and environmental change through their artistic practice. more >

Sustaining Great Art: Arts Council Year Three Report

Sustaining Great Art presents the results of a three year partnership between Arts Council England and Julie’s Bicycle to track the environmental impacts of over 700 arts organisations across England and inspire them to be more environmentally sustainable. more >

Kulturfabrik's (Luxembourg) Environmental Charter

Kulturfabrik, an independent cultural centre in Luxembourg, is commited to reduce, reuse and recycle their waste. Their Environmental Charter is available at Trans Europe Halles (TEH)'s knowledge centre The Resource. more >

Sustainable Models for Shared Culture. Case Studies and Policy Issues

The FCForum has recently published a report entitled "Sustainable Models for Shared Culture. Case Studies and Policy Issues" which aims at "supporting experiences, collecting challenges, sharing skills and building sustainable models for the cultural sector in the digital era". more >

Sustaining Great Art: Julie’s Bicycle Year 1 report

Today, Arts Council England has published Sustaining Great Art, a report on the environmental sustainability of our 704 major revenue funded organisations. The report, produced in partnership with Julie’s Bicycle, presents the results of the first year of environmental reporting. more >

The Art of Sustainability in Cultural Centres

A video and written report documenting conclusions from the training session 'Developing the Art of Sustainability in Cultural Centres', organised by Trans Europe Halles, Mains d'Œuvres (Saint-Ouen, France) and L'Avant Rue (Paris, France) on June 16-19th, 2010 is available online.
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Julie's Bicycle - website resources

The Julie's Bicycle website contains numerous resources on the arts and environmental sustainability, including fact sheets, guidelines and case studies. more >

Arts. Environment. Sustainability. : how can culture make a difference?

There is a growing recognition of the contributions of culture and the arts to finding creative solutions for global challenges. more >

Emergence: Creative practice for a sustainable future

In 2010/11 the arts sector in Wales came together at three major conferences in Cardiff, Swansea and Caernarfon to share ideas, ask questions and get practical tools for a more sustainable practice. more >

Art and Sustainability: Connecting Patterns for a Culture of Complexity

What is the cultural dimension of sustainability? This book offers a thought-provoking answer, with a theoretical synthesis on 'cultures of sustainability'. more >

The Green Mobility Guide - a guide to environmentally sustainable mobility for performing arts

Commissioned by On The Move to creative industries environmental experts Julie’s Bicycle, the Green Mobility Guide offers practical recommendations for professionals across the performing arts, case studies and resources, including the Julie’s Bicycle “IG tool” for tracking carbon emissions while on tour. more >

FCForum How-To for Sustainable Creativity

The FCForum brings together key organisations and active voices in the spheres of free/libre culture and knowledge. It responds to the need for an international arena in which to put together and coordinate a global framework for action. more >

Craft & Environmental Sustainability

Craft has an essential role to play in building a more sustainable future, and in this briefing note we explore how makers are trailblazing the use of recycled and sustainably-sourced materials and pioneering new, low-impact alternatives. more >

Asia-Europe dialogue on arts, culture and climate change – conference report

In October 2008, the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), in association with Cultura21 international and other organisations, conducted the Asia-Europe Dialogue on Arts, Culture and Climate Change in Beijing, China. The conference report is now available. more >

D'Art report: Arts and ecological sustainability

This report provides excellent examples of good practice in supporting artists or arts organisations with creative and practical responses to ecological concerns. more >

Links Between Biological and Cultural Diversity

The myriad links between cultural and biological diversity are increasingly viewed as key elements in achieving sustainable development and the Millennium Development Goals. more >

Sustainability: a new frontier for the arts and cultures

Insights from researchers, artists and activists in Europe, North and Central America, Africa and Asia on environmental sustainability as a new frontier for the arts and cultures. more >

Sustainable Development Strategy 2007-2009

Focuses on ensuring that the environmental impacts of Canadian Heritage’s decisions are understood, weighed and appropriately addressed.   more >

Climate Change - The Role of the Arts

A paper presented by Rose Fenton at the 15th EFAH Conference and Annual General Assembly, Warsaw, Poland in 2007. more >




    A global, festival of cultural activity on climate change. ArtCOP21 will connect hundreds of thousands of people to the climate challenge through an extensive global programme of over 290 major events;  art installations, plays, exhibitions, concerts, performances, talks, conferences, workshops, family events and screenings – plus a whole range of people power gatherings and demonstrations – taking place right across Paris and worldwide. more >

    Resilience in a time of uncertainty: Indigenous peoples and climate change

    An International Conference contributing to COP21 climate conference sponsored by UNESCO. Nations will gather at COP21 with the goal of achieving a legally binding and universal agreement to keep global warming under 2°C. UNESCO’s conference has a related goal: ensuring that the COP includes the voices of indigenous people. more >

    EcoArts Australis conference

    The EcoArts Australis annual conference is an opportunity for you to network and communicate with others who are using the arts in creative ways to foster environmental sustainability. more >

    NATUR Congress 2013 - "Nature and Culture - The future we want!"

    Melting glaciers, shrinking rainforests - sustainable handling of resources in a global context is more than necessary. What is and could be the impact of culture on a change of values? A serious question, thoroughly scrutinised at the Nature and Sustainability Congress in Basel, to be held on March 1 2013. more >

    Port Cities as Hotspots of Creative and Sustainable Local Development

    The aim of the Meeting is to discuss principles, tools and practices of creative places, for the identification of successful policies and for the formulation of recommendations to balance economic prosperity with social needs and conservation of eco-systems in reinventing the city. more >

    Culture and Sustainability in Rio+20

    The government of Brazil and the world organisation of United Cities and Local Governments are organising a seminar on culture and sustainability. more >

    Green Strategies for the Arts Field, 5th international seminar

    On April 13, the Wanås Foundation, in collaboration with Kristianstad konsthall, presents the international seminar Green Strategies for the Art Field. The aim of the seminar is to provide a unique discussion and hands-on advice on how museums, art galleries, artists, and others working in the cultural field can find environmentally sustainable methods of working.   more >

    Oceanic Conference on Creativity and Climate Change – Oceans, Islands and Skies

    The conference will bring together writers, artists and environmental activists in providing an alternative culture of determination of responses to issues like climate change. more >

    Climates of heritage conservation: Responding to the challenge of global climate change

    Papers presented at this colloquium provide comparative experiences from diverse nations in all the world's regions that are subject to the threat of global climate change as they impact cultural heritage. more >

    Wolf Trap's National Summit on the Arts and Environment Webinar

    Arts leaders from across the country are invited to log on for a vital webinar and discover why the arts are the next crucial tool in our fight to save the planet, and how to help advance this dynamic work. more >

    Art Changing Attitudes Toward the Environment

    A United Nations seminar on how art can serve as a catalyst for incorporating environmental values into social, economic, and political realms. more >

    Art and Green Chemistry Conference

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    No Way Back?

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    Call for Papers: Two Fires Conference on Arts and Activism

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