A Public Conversation Among People Who Care
March 06, 2005What we say / what we do
There seem to be two tracks for this conversation about the Rand study, about intrinsic/extrinsic benefits of creative experience, about the limits of instrumental arguments for the arts: one track follows what we say, the other follows what we do.
What we say revolves around persuasion...convincing decision-makers or gatekeepers that influence the richness, depth, and access to creative experience. This isn't just about bolstering direct state and federal funding, but also engaging school districts looking for deep budget cuts (often in the arts), or convincing cities formulating 'smart growth' plans that arts activities have an integrated place in their decisions.
As we all know, persuasion isn't always about deep and nuanced truth, but about arguments that work.
On the other track is what arts organizations, arts managers, arts supporters do, that is, how we ensure deep and lasting connections between our creative efforts and the larger world. In this track, it's essential that we have deep and nuanced knowledge of how the world values what we offer, or what benefits or connections they seek.
The Rand effort, and other explorations of value or benefits, speak to both tracks...even though we tend to focus most on the first.
I'm pleased and honored to be among such a great group to discuss both tracks (and others as they're found). To me, this issue is not just about forming an argument, but it lies at the core of all things in policy, management, marketing, subsidy, outreach, education, and on and on.
Posted by ataylor at March 6, 2005 06:43 PM