Thanks to all for the gratfiying response to my news from last week. I’m looking forward to new frontiers and really proud of the community that’s started to build up around Createquity. I hope to ensure that the site remains worthy of your time and attention.
- ‘Tis the time of the season when states start figuring out their budget situations, and all early signs are pointing to another tough year for state-level support of the arts. Following the previously-reported proposed cuts to New York’s state arts agency, word comes that the governor of Rhode Island wants to gut the Ocean State’s public art, discretionary grant, and film tax credit programs, amounting to a 58% drop in total appropriations for the arts. Rhode Island Citizens for the Arts is on the case.
- Speaking of government, this is what happens when people don’t value public goods enough to pay for them.
- Drexel arts administration professor and new ArtsJournal blogger James Undercofler has made a splash this week with a broadside against the limitations of the 501(c)(3) nonprofit form for the arts. It’s a familiar complaint in “emerging leader” circles, but it’s notable to me to see someone of Jim’s generation and pedigree come to the same conclusions. The point about the form being equally inappropriate for large institutions is also interesting, though I’m not sure what Undercofler has up his sleeve in terms of alternatives. (Adam Thurman responds and says the problem is not the organizational form, it’s us, and Andrew Taylor agrees. I think there are valuable lessons to be understood from both perspectives.) I know Jim from my days working at the American Music Center, when he was on the board, and am glad to welcome him to our little pajamas-wearing blogger community.
- Speaking of emerging leaders in the arts, major kudos to the Hewlett and Irvine Foundations for jointly awarding nearly three-quarters of a million bucks to grassroots arts leadership development efforts in California. I especially love that the two foundations clearly coordinated their support with each other for maximum effectiveness. You’ll be hearing a lot more about this in the coming months, I suspect.
- Would love to see more of this: local government holds public meeting about legislation of importance to the arts; arts blogger attends meeting and writes about the experience.
- Scott Walters is just hell-bent on stirring up trouble. With fellow blogger Tom McLoughlin, he’s started yet another blog with a funny acronym, this one called TACT (Theatre Arts Curriculum Transformation). It’s about reforming the broken system of professional training for the theater from the inside, and the Prof’s last two posts are particularly thought-provoking: one examines the geographical breakdown of those auditioning for slots in college theater programs in North Carolina, and the other is a somewhat radical proposal (he likes those) to tie theater professors’ incomes to their students’ subsequent financial success.
- Michael Rushton reports on some new research examining the relationship between choir singing and civic engagement (a topic explored somewhat controversially last year by Chorus America):
In particular, he finds that choirs, through the frequency of rehearsals, and the active participation of members, seem to lead to more opportunities for civic engagement than groups that are expressly formed as politically- and service-oriented groups.
- Intriguing audience development strategy going down in Baltimore: Marin Alsop and the Baltimore Symphony are welcoming amateur musicians for some face time with the starting lineup and charging audiences $10 a pop to see it.
- Look out, Mark Kramer is in the house at Intrepid Philanthropist. If you don’t know Kramer, he’s, uh, only one of the most famous thinkers (along with his Harvard Business School colleague, Michael Porter) in social innovation history [said in best Comic Book Guy voice]. Also this week, Center for Effective Philanthropy’s Vice President Kevin Bolduc is holding forth at the CEP Blog, focusing on qualitative assessment of foundations through grantee comments.
- All hail the new legal models for social entrepreneurship, L3C and B Corp…wait, now there’s an H Corporation too?
- Tim Kane of Growthology surveys leading economics bloggers (including, umm, himself) and finds that the folks who are paid to understand large-scale economic trends yet by and large failed to see the recession coming don’t agree on much, other than hating labor unions.
- Wow, this seems, uh…important: Marginal Revolution passes on word that researchers doing independent checks of 2000 Census data found significant errors in how the survey counted Americans aged 65 and over. And it seems the problem is not just a simple matter of correct and move on, either. This information has formed the backbone of countless studies, policy papers, and political analyses since it was published nearly a decade ago.
- Yeah, what this guy said:
- If you’re in New England (or even if you’re not) and at all interested in creative economy issues, you should come to this Connecting New England’s Creative Communities shindig next month in my lovely temporary hometown of Providence, RI. I attended a meeting for this event this evening and there are some really great speakers lined up as well as interesting panel ideas. Plus, registration is a total bargain at $60. I’ll be attending and blogging the conference for Fractured Atlas, so if you show up please say hello!
Another tendency I’ve noticed in broader discussions about nonprofits and philanthropy, whether they’re happening online, at conferences, or in the classroom, is that the arts all too often get lost in the shadows. […] That’s why I’m really excited that GreatNonprofits has partnered with Guidestar and Intersection for the Arts to launch the 2010 Arts Appreciation Campaign. It seems the good folks at GreatNonprofits recognized that there weren’t enough arts organizations represented on the site through reviews, and is now specifically reaching out to the arts community to rectify the situation.