Greetings from across the pond …

Diane RagsdaleSo I’ve recently made a few changes in my life.  In July 2010, I left The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, where I had the privilege and joy to work in the performing arts program for six years, and moved to the Netherlands to marry a Dutchman and to work towards a PhD in cultural economics at Erasmus University in Rotterdam.  In addition to my role as a grantmaker, over the past couple years, I (along with others) have been writing and speaking on the larger changes in the cultural environment and ways arts organizations may need to adapt in order to survive and thrive in the coming years.  If you are interested, you can download a few things I’ve written in the aptly titled section in the right hand navigation bar of this page.

When I tell my arts friends that I’m now studying cultural economics they almost always say, “Interesting!”  This is often followed by, “What is cultural economics exactly?” and then the comment, “Oh, wait, does this have something to do with economic impact studies?”  The answer is “yes and no” (I’ll say more about the field of cultural economics in future posts).  

Given that economic impact studies and arguments are often associated with the field of cultural economics, and they are a somewhat controversial topic, I thought I’d use my first couple posts to share some reflections on them.  The first one appears today and the second will be published a week from today.

You can read a bit more about JUMPER by clicking on ABOUT at the top of this page.  I thank everyone who takes the time to follow my blog here and there; and I look forward to hearing your thoughts when you feel inclined to share them.

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  1. Andras Szanto says

    Greetings from the New Continent. Looking forward to your insights. A perfect time to observe European transformations from your perch in the Netherlands. Old assumptions about the state, the market, and the arts will be tested in the months and years to come.

    • says

      Andras – thanks for the comment! You’re right – It’s a VERY interesting time – in large part because everyone (as you know) is looking to the US, so-called, “entrepreneurial” model for answers. I’m not convinced ours is the model to follow. It seems our old assumptions need to be tested, as well.

  2. Wally Chappell says

    will look forword to reading your comments, and to learning what's going on in europe, with regard to the arts….onward…..wally chappell

  3. Tim McClimon says

    Congratulations on your new blog, Diane! I've been writing a blog on corporate social responsibility for American Express employees that past few months, and I know it's hard to keep coming up with things to write. So, best of luck with this one. I'll be watching from across the pond! Tim

  4. Robert Dorf says

    I look forward to reading your posts while you inform about practice and challenge assumptions. A great time for a conversation about cultural economics and one that will hopefully lead to further musings, conversations and understanding to a changing marketplace of curation, entrepeneurship, funding models, capital formation and sustainable entities. Best wishes! Robert

  5. says

    Great focus on cultural economics. Much of the study is on macro cultural economics and what we need a great deal more of is study, research and writing on micro cultural economics, e.g., the cultural enterprise and the cultural entrepreneur and their role in building a sustainable Cultural Economy. We just finished a study that demonstrates that New Mexico cultural entrepreneur families are better off economically in communities of high poverty. I look forward to your posts.

  6. says

    I feel it’s no coincidence that at age 65 I’m suddenly listening to early Dylan again (the times, they are a…). The theatre company I co-founded 32 years ago is either being re-born one more time or actually, finally dying. Meanwhile, I’m working on a play about our ancestors, The Group Theatre (1931-1939). I’m so happy to have found you here, Diane. Our paths crossed a few times when you were with Mellon. It’s good to know what you’re doing and to be able to join the discussion. Best wishes on all your new endeavors!

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