Energy Cities and Cultural Development

Walk Among The Worlds by Maximo Gomez. Photo: Alain Sojourner http://alainsojourner.com/nuit-blanche-toronto-2014-walk-among-the-worlds/

Walk Among The Worlds by Maximo Gomez. Photo: Alain Sojourner http://alainsojourner.com/nuit-blanche-toronto-2014-walk-among-the-worlds/

We’ve never been to a conference on the cultural and creative industries at a University that didn’t have someone providing a theoretical critique of the subject. On 1st October Robert Gordon University and the City of Aberdeen co-hosted an event which drew on the experiences of other energy capitals to understand cultural and creative industries development. Pacem critique, this was a morning full of insight into the sorts of strategies, policies and actions that make a difference to cities and see the arts thrive as part of their communities. It benefited from specific experience of being a European Capital of Culture (something Aberdeen aspires to) and it was a good renewal of the process of building a culture and arts development agenda for Aberdeen.

The subtitle was ‘Global Energy Cities and Cultural Illumination’ but the real point is that Energy Cities with strong industrial stories have specific challenges not answered by the narrative of post industrial regeneration.

Jon Price, Chris Fremantle and Mark Hope were amongst a number of researchers and research partners from or associated with Gray’s School of Art (part of the Robert Gordon University) attending the conference. These notes and comments are an immediate response to the presentations from the four cities represented.

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