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Cultural participation: significance, forms, effects

Aktivitet: Tale eller præsentation - typerForedrag og mundtlige bidrag

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Birgit Eriksson - Foredragsholder

The participatory agenda is on the rise in- and outside institutions. While many traditional institutions seem to be losing legitimacy, new participatory repertoires are evolving. The practice – and ideal – of citizen and user involvement seems to be everywhere: in product development, welfare institutions, city planning, media – and in the arts.
In the arts, the ideal of turning citizens, users and audiences into active “participants” has given rise to concepts, and practices, of “relational”, “social”, “dialogical”, “collaborative” and “participatory” art. These concepts are often part of a critical agenda that links art to new and more democratic forms of communication and community. However, the arts can also be instrumentalized in cultural policy, when they become a form of soft social engineering aimed at innovation, social integration and cohesion. And the citizens have their own reasons for participating. The motivations for engaging in participatory arts are thus diverse and sometimes even contradictory. And often, the connection between the motivations and the forms of participation is unclear.
Drawing on a range of theories, I first present why contradictions and unclearness is inseparable from the concept of participation. Based on a participatory research project in European cultural centres, I offer a typology of forms and effects of participation that may be used in the development and evaluation of participatory art projects. I here distinguish between six forms (Attention, Education, Co-inhabitation, Co-creation, Publics and Co-decision) and nine effects (Feeling of togetherness, Social inclusion, Wellbeing, Learning, Empowerment, Cultural/political reflection, Aesthetic intensity, Sustainability and Local development). Finally, I argue for the importance of clarifying the motivations of participation when dealing with citizen participation.
29 feb. 2008

Begivenhed (Workshop)

Grad af anerkendelseInternational begivenhed

ID: 121416538