A Snapshot of Creative Placemaking in Higher Education, v. 2, October 2017

a2ru News, Creative Placemaking, Member News

October 17, 2017

This report is a follow-up to the April 2016 Alliance for the Arts in Research Universities (a2ru)’s targeted survey to examine the role of creative placemaking in higher education. The purpose of the survey was to identify creative placemaking activity in higher education as grounding for the 2016 Arts Business Research Symposium, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Little is known about how creative placemaking intersects with higher education, despite a burst of activity within the last five years within government, nonprofits, community organizers, building sectors, and industry partners (fueled by significant federal, private, and industry financial incentives). This survey was an initial effort to begin this investigation.

In 2017, the Alliance partnered with the Bolz Center for Arts Administration at the University of Wisconsin-Madison to convene alliance partners and creative placemaking leaders to map the field, share best practices, and address challenges. In anticipation, we issued a follow-up survey. This paper identifies new ideas and trends, as well as offers some comparisons to the original survey.
a2ru identifies issues and trends in higher education within arts-integrative research, curricula, and creative practice, and addresses institutional hurdles to implementation. a2ru has identified creative placemaking as an important emergent and rapidly growing collective impact model, with arts at its core. As historical framing, Anne Gadwa Nicdemus notes, “Creative placemaking is a relatively new term for work that’s been organically happening in neighborhoods, towns and cities all across the country for decades. Within the last few years it’s received new momentum in terms of funding and policy coordination.”1 a2ru is interested in the role arts and design play in the maintenance and development of communities. Specifically, we are interested in the role higher education can play in the advancement of this type of dynamic activity, known as “creative placemaking.”

Full report, by Edgar Cardenas, Mellon Postdoctoral Research Fellow, available HERE.

Leave a Reply