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


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 >


    Bienes culturales de 33 instituciones, en riesgo frente al fenómeno de El Niño

    El Ministerio de Cultura y Patrimonio registra 1 051 repositorios de memoria entre museos, bibliotecas y archivos históricos en las provincias de Esmeraldas, Manabí, Santa Elena, Los Ríos y Guayas. more >

    ArtCOP21 L'Agenda Culturel de la COP21 est en ligne !

    Expositions, rencontres, performances, spectacles, projections, concerts, lectures, ateliers participatifs et expérimentations artistiques, ArtCOP21 l'Agenda Culturel de la COP21 propose un véritable parcours artistique d'envergure autour des enjeux climatiques jusqu'en décembre. more >

    Climate science is looking to art to create change

    Throughout history, the arts have played a major role in recording and reflecting the state of human society and the natural world in which society exists. Today, scientists and policy makers are struggling in some countries to gain the support that will lead to meaningful action on climate change and other environmental challenges. more >

    Expertos, artistas y educadores confluyen en el IV Congreso Internacional

    Especialistas nacionales y provenientes de Chile, Reino Unido, Portugal, Yemen, Francia, Países Bajos y Costa Rica, junto con periodistas y personalidades, disertarán sobre la importancia del agua en relación al desarrollo sostenible. more >

    Translations of Groundbreaking Global Arts and Sustainability Review Launched

    D’Art Report 34b - The arts and environmental sustainability: an international overview is now available in French and Spanish bringing the findings to a much wider audience and opening up opportunities for dialogue and action.  more >

    Traductions du premier compte rendu sur les arts mondiaux et la viabilité à long terme

    Le Rapport D’Art 34b – Les arts et la soutenabilité environnementale: un panorama international – est maintenant disponible en français et en espagnol, apportant ainsi les données recueillies à un public plus vaste et ouvrant des possibilités de dialogue et d’action.  more >

    Publicadas las traducciones de un innovador análisis global en torno a la sostenibilidad y las artes

    Informe D’Art 34b - Las artes y la sostenibilidad medioambiental: una perspectiva internacional está ya disponible en francés y español. Su traducción a ambas lenguas traslada sus conclusiones a un público mucho más amplio y facilita más oportunidades de entablar el diálogo y emprender acciones.  more >

    Se lanza el panorama mundial de las políticas de las artes y sostenibilidad ambiental

    En la FICAAC nos complace anunciar la publicación del último Informe de Investigación, D'Art 34b: El arte y la sostenibilidad ambiental: una visión internacional. more >

    Global overview of arts and environmental sustainability policies released

    IFACCA is pleased to announce the release of the latest Research Report, D’Art 34b: The arts and environmental sustainability: an international overview. more >

    New NEA Resources for Arts-based Community Development

    The National Endowment for the Arts is launching new resources to assist practitioners who are working on arts-based community development projects. These resources will assist those practitioners to develop projects that are authentic, equitable, and that augment existing local assets. more >

    World Environment Day and Arts Policy

    To mark World Environment Day today, 5 June, we are pleased to announce that  IFACCA’s report, The Arts and Environmental Sustainability, which is a joint project with Julie’s Bicycle, will be published very soon. more >

    Arts Council England releases environmental report, Sustaining Great Art

    In 2012 the Arts Council introduced environmental reporting and policy requirements for its 704 major revenue funded organisations. The Arts Council partnered with Julie’s Bicycle, specialists in environmental sustainability for the arts, to support the organisations in meeting the requirements.Sustaining Great Art summarises the results of the first year. more >

    Arts and Environmental Sustainability: Survey of Arts Organisations

    Following the research survey sent to funding agencies, IFACCA and Julie’s Bicycle would now like to hear from funded art organisations to help them in mapping environmental sustainability activities in the arts and cultural sectors.   more >

    El arte y la Sostenibilidad Ambiental: Encuesta para las organizaciones artísticas

    Después de la encuesta enviada a las agencias de financiación, la FICAAC y Julie’s Bicycle ahora quisieran saber de las organizaciones de arte que reciben financiación para mapear las actividades de sostenibilidad ambiental en el arte y la cultura.  more >

    New sustainability initiative in Melbourne

    The Australia Council for the Arts and the City of Melbourne have partnered on an innovative project to support theatre artists to incorporate environmental sustainability in making their work. more >

    Arts and Environmental Sustainability Research Project

    IFACCA and Julie’s Bicycle have a research partnership underway to map environmental sustainability activities in the arts and cultural sectors, and to identify what support and resources exist or could be developed.  more >

    Live Performance Australia’s new Energy Efficiency Project

    Live Performance Australia is proud to announce the next phase of its environmental sustainability initiative, Greener Live Performances through Energy Efficiency. Funded by a grant from the Australian Government’s Energy Efficiency Information Grants program, the project will deliver information specifically developed for small to medium enterprises (SMEs) throughout the industry supply chain nationally. more >

    New Drive to Green the Arts in Scotland

    Creative Carbon Scotland has launched their new website, an online project which aims to bring together the arts and the environment sectors in Scotland. more >

    Green mobility guide for the performing arts launched in 4 new languages

    The Green mobility guide for the performing arts produced in 2011 shows directors, tour managers, light designers and other professionals from the performing arts how to “green” their touring practices. Each translation of the Green mobility guide has been supported by a different national sponsor, with a commitment to the international mobility of artists and the environment. more >

    Sustainability should be at the heart of our collective artistic vision

    Creativity is the most sustainable and renewable energy source on the planet. Let's use it, urges Alison Tickell of Julie's Bicycle. more >

    Communications and Marketing Manager

    As a key member of the Management Team, this position is responsible for development and implementation of an annual marketing and communications strategy. more >

    Arts Council England to embed environmental sustainability into funding

    Speaking at the Tipping Point conference in Newcastle, Alan Davey, Chief Executive, Arts Council England has today announced that the Arts Council is the first arts funding body in the world to embed environmental sustainability into the funding agreements of its major programmes. more >

    Lights, Camera, Call-to-Action

    Kevin McCloud offers budding Welsh filmmakers the chance to win £1,500 and a short film commission. Blue movies are so passé. But green movies, now that is in vogue. Kevin McCloud is launching a UK-wide competition to find budding filmmakers who can use their creativity to encourage people to green their homes. more >

    Über Lebenskunst: Initiative for Culture and Sustainability

    Über Lebenskunst, a project initiated by the Federal Cultural Foundation, will present a series of events, performances and installations in the city of Berlin and a big festival from 17-21 August 2011.  more >

    Exclusive: Carbon footprint of touring theatre revealed

    Moving sets, transporting casts and lighting hotel rooms for British touring theatre companies creates as many greenhouse gas emissions every year as flying around the world 2,680 times, new research has revealed. more >

    Indianapolis relaxes climate controls

    Leading directors have been questioning the scientific validity—and cost—of running air conditioning to the current standard specification. more >

    Private Sector, Civil Society and Cultural Organisations Agree on Worldwide Collective Action for Climate

    Culture|Futures Collaboration Begins its Spiral of Engagement in Copenhagen. Following three days of discussions, there was agreement among organisations from the private sector, civil society and cultural bodies, to collaborate across all sectors and regions to act together for the climate. more >

    IFACCA members participate in Culture|Futures symposium in Copenhagen

    IFACCA members, including Arts Council England, the Ministry of Culture Cuba, Scottish Arts Council, Danish Arts Agency and the National Arts Council of South Africa have joined the world’s most influential cultural networks, organisations and leaders at the Culture|Futures symposium concluding today in Copenhagen. more >

    Can artists save the world?

    The environment is this year's big theme across the arts. Here's how Britain's greenest cultural avengers plan to save the world. more >

    Cultura y Medio Ambiente firman convenio de cooperación institucional

    Las Secretarías de Estado de Cultura (SEC) y Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales (SEMARENA), firmaron un convenio de cooperación con el objetivo de salvaguardar, proteger y fomentar el patrimonio cultural y natural de la República Dominicana. more >

    Culture and Environment Ministries sign agreement for cooperation

    The Ministries of Culture (SEC) and Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARENA) signed a cooperation agreement in order to safeguard, protect and promote the cultural and natural heritage of the Dominican Republic. more >

    We are not taking the environment’s protection seriously, says Argentinean Naturalist and Poet

    Alfredo Lichter has dedicated a good part of his life to studying the sea and to creating messages that give relevance to the need of changing our relationship with nature. more >

    Theatre pollution threat to London revealed

    London’s theatre industry pumps 50,000 tonnes of carbon into the atmosphere every year - equivalent to 10% of the city’s total bus emissions or the annual energy consumption of 9,000 homes. more >

    Artists and musicians on board for Arctic project

    Artists will travel to the Arctic as part of a programme bringing artists and scientists together to raise awareness of climate change. more >

    Summer Festival as Environmental Liability

    Let's face it: summer festivals are not what you'd call environmentally friendly. Some festivals are attempting to minimize the damage. more >

    Arts and Ecology day to raise climate change awareness

    'Arts & Ecology Day' has been launched to engage the creativity and influence of the arts community in making London a more sustainable city. The day will raise the profile of sustainability by celebrating new plays, poems, music, artworks and dance across London, with the aim of developing into a world-wide campaign. more >

    Turning over an old leaf

    Only 24 books are produced for every tree felled. But book-swapping websites could provide a solution for the eco-aware reader. more >

    Arts and ecological sustainability: seeking your help

    In our latest D’Art question, being undertaken with Arts Council England, we are looking for examples of good practice in helping artists and arts organisations respond to ecological concerns. more >

    Las artes y la sostenibilidad ambiental

    Arts Council England y la FICAAC están interesado en recopilar ejemplos de buenas prácticas en el apoyo a artistas y a organizaciones artísticas que hayan respondido de manera creativa y práctica a problemas ecológicos. more >

    UN Seminar to Focus on Art as a Vehicle for Changing Attitudes Toward the Environment

    A seminar to be be held at UN headquaters on 8 May 2008 as part of an ongoing initiative to utilize the universal language of art as a catalyst to empower individuals, communities, and leaders to focus on environmental values. more >

    Wales’ international visual arts prize challenges audiences to address climate change

    The eyes of the international visual arts world are on Cardiff following the announcement of the winner of the third Artes Mundi international visual arts prize, which this year addressed human condition and climate change.     more >

    Materials for the Arts

    Materials for the Arts gathers materials from companies and individuals that no longer need them, and redistributes them to artists and educators that do. more >

    How green is my beanstalk?

    What is the carbon footprint of your average theatre? How can it be slashed by two thirds? Is a greener pantomime season really going to make a difference to global warming? more >

    It’s good to be green

    Karen Price looks at just some of the ways in which the arts industry in Wales is helping tackle important green issues. more >

    To be eco-friendly, or not to be eco-friendly

    Cultural organisations including the London office of Arts Council England will work with London's mayor to draw up a Climate Change Action Plan for London Theatre. more >

    London theatres challenged to ‘go green’ by 2025

    London's mayor has announced an industry-wide campaign to make the capital’s theatres more energy efficient and achieve a 60% reduction in carbon emissions by 2025. more >

    The art of imagining a greener future

    Promoting sustainability is more than just facts and figures for one educator. more >

    New program provides platform for green design

    One hundred small environmental design companies will have the opportunity to build their business through the Australian Design Platform. more >

    Using ‘komiks’ to help save the environment

    The National Commission on Culture and the Arts is using its comic book program to help the government’s information drive on environmental issues. more >

    Can art help climate change?

    A new exhibition - featuring 42 contemporary artists from around the world - aims to do just that. more >

    Culture on the agenda at environment summit

    The 15th National Environment Institute of Australia and New Zealand Conference will have a cultural twist this year, with the formal launch of the Regional Cultural Alliance. 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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