Joining it up: Conditions for Community and Creativity - Jocelyn Cunningham's insights into cultural education programme

Over the past year Jocelyn Cunningham, Director of Arts and Society, has spent time with Create Gloucestershire and our partners on the Local Cultural Education Programme, investigating the conditions needed to provide meaningful, high quality creative experiences with young people and wider communities.  The result is Joining it up: Conditions for Community and Creativity, a great insight into how two organisations make this work, and what questions we should be asking of ourselves - arts organisations, practitioners, funders, commissioners - to bring about positive change. You can read the full report here and find out more about it below. 

Over the past 2 years, Create Gloucestershire has been exploring how cultural education partnerships could work across the county.  Rather than implementing a top down strategic plan, our approach was to enable ideas and structures to emerge from participating partners, responding to local need and opportunity.  

With support from Arts Council England, Gloucestershire County Council, and Real Ideas Organisation (the Bridge organisation in the South West), CG and its members tested 8 approaches across the county, developing local models that were joined up as part of a wider arts and educational context through CG. 

Using case studies from two of these projects, Jocelyn Cunningham has explored in depth how arts centres and artists can work hand-in-hand with their communities, understanding and responding to the whole needs of a place. Joining It Up shares Jocelyn’s research, insights into what makes practice high quality and effective, and thoughts on how effective collaboration might happen to bring about change at a local, regional and national level.

You can read the full publication, including Executive Summary, online here. To download your own free copy you can use or create a free Issuu login. 

Jocelyn Cunningham is the Director of Arts and Society, an associate partner with the Royal Society of Arts (RSA) and leads on Arts and Social Change programmes for the RSA where she writes a regular blog. These programmes place creativity and the arts at the centre of how citizens, places and public services find new ways of working together. Jocelyn has been an actor and director in both the U.K. and Canada for over 25 years and this practice has informed an artist-based approach to strategic work within non arts arenas. As a consultant with Other Ways of Working, Jocelyn has been working with Create Gloucestershire on the Cultural Commissioning programme.