Why Every Little Helps the Arts to Thrive

Why Every Little Helps the Arts to Thrive

“The genie is out of the bottle now,” said the delegate from Paris looking glumly out of my lap-top screen, “We are giving away all of this work for free. How will we ever get people to pay for the arts again?” It was June 2020 and I was attending one of those seminars that have only seemed possible since the Covid pandemic closed performing arts venues last March. 250 creative industry delegates from across Europe sitting in their kitchens or studios sharing their plans about how to keep the sector alive without a live audience. (more…)

Fetching a Coat: Finding a Concept that Fits Arts, Culture, Health & Wellbeing

Fetching a Coat: Finding a Concept that Fits Arts, Culture, Health & Wellbeing

The search for concepts I feel comfortable with to describe arts, culture, health and wellbeing has been a long one. Theories and concepts have been described as a lens to see the world or a framework to scaffold the thesis. For me it has felt more like trying on many coats. It is not just the case of finding one that can help me get the job done, though it is helping me to progress my research. There are projects and services where I know there is a health and wellbeing impact but previously I didn’t have the lens to discern the mechanisms that ‘created’ health and wellbeing. It’s also a process of finding a lens that melds with the values I have and how I see the world; that I can be comfortable in and reflects how I want to encounter the world. The current coat is a quite new, it’s a little stiff, not yet snug. I’m not quite used to it and its possibilities. But, with time and some reflective journeys, I hope I can break it in make it my own. (more…)

UKRI Place Based Partnership – Evidence Review Launch

UKRI Place Based Partnership – Evidence Review Launch

At the beginning of 2020, colleagues from STAR Project, Renfrewshire Council and the University of the West of Scotland organised a workshop, Paisley Art & Soul. The workshop brought together members of Renfrewshire’s local communities and other stakeholders to discuss the ways that art and culture affects individual and community prosperity and wellbeing. This co-produced research project aligns closely with the aims of Future Paisley, a wide-ranging cultural regeneration programme currently ongoing and, in which, local communities are collaborating with a broad range of partners to reshape the town’s future. (more…)

Light in the Dark Days

Light in the Dark Days

On an average Monday morning at Wallace Street, I start my working day greeted by Margaret with her little Chihuahua pup in arms. She tells me about her latest knitted dog coat purchase as other bodies start to shuffle through the narrow corridor. We settle in a semi-circle of kind faces and laughter, and I can hear the sound of mugs clinking and the smell of coffee brewing in the background.

Now, my morning begins with adjusting the volume of my laptop, fixing my fringe in the camera and making sure everyone can hear me ok. (more…)

A Postcard from Normality…

A Postcard from Normality…

In March 2020, as offices and teaching moved online, I left Scotland for my native country of Sweden and haven’t been back since. In my research, I’m looking at the social and economic effects of festivals in Paisley, Scotland. On-site events research is, unsurprisingly, not the best line of work right now. (more…)

The Effects of Covid-19 on European Cultural Relations & the implications for Policy Makers

The Effects of Covid-19 on European Cultural Relations & the implications for Policy Makers

A couple of weeks ago, in October, CCSE premiered the latest instalment of #CCSEConversations series. On this occasion, CCSE Director Professor Gayle McPherson spoke with Gitte Zschoch – Director of EUNIC the network of European Union National Institutes for Culture. Gayle and Gitte discussed ‘the Effects of Covid-19 on European Cultural Relations and the implications for Policy Makers’. (more…)