‘Transition and change’ key to new arts leadership

The Clore Leadership Fellowship has remodelled its programme to focus on transition and change forced by the Covid-19 crisis for spring 2021.

The programme, which numbers many cultural leaders here and overseas among its alumni of its intensive training courses, says that a workforce development survey this summer has shown sector leaders want to be “agile, entrepreneurial and adaptive” in order to steer a course through the crisis which has devastated arts and creative businesses.

“Our sector is set for a seismic change, only if we capture this extreme moment of disruption and explore its multi-faceted potential” said choreographer and Clore board member Wayne McGregor (pictured). “We need evolution, adaption and fresh thinking to challenge the inequalities and vulnerabilities exposed by this strange period of enforced pause and we need urgent action.  

“Artists and leaders today, over 70% of whom are freelancers, will need to be trailblazers, using their diverse creativity as a source of resilience, not only to reinvigorate the arts and culture sector but to impact society more widely with art making as a critical form of social action” he said, adding that with refreshed and targeted modules the programme  intends to sharpen perspectives.

Although arts organisations have been financially crippled by the enforced closure since March, all places on the remodelled Clore programme for the spring are fully funded, with 75% of its intensive courses supported by bursaries for the first time and some activities offered on a “pay what you can” basis.

Clore director Hilary Carty said the survey had shown that organisations know they need to create flexible business models, and to tackle head-on issues of diversity, equality and inclusion as critical to transformation.

“We recognise that individuals and organisations are operating under extreme financial pressures but the need for high quality and relevant leadership learning has never been greater as the sector navigates the next stage of the fallout from the pandemic” she said. “Therefore we have responded by broadening access to our programmes, being proactive in pushing forward the diversity agenda and expanding opportunities to nurture the creative, civic and brave leadership encouraged and modeled on our programmes.”


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