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Transforming Narratives’ international Cultural Leadership Programme launches with 24 participants

The Cultural Leadership Programme (CLP) will develop a new generation of artists and cultural leaders in Birmingham, Bangladesh and Pakistan.

Today 24 participants from Birmingham, Bangladesh and Pakistan will meet for the first time as part of Transforming Narratives CLP.

They have been selected through an open application process and represent a mixture of disciplines including art, architecture, drama, film, education, music, literature and production.

Unique opportunity

The CLP will give the participants a unique opportunity to jointly contribute to the curation and delivery of new projects within Transforming narratives’ ground-breaking international partnership. 

Participants will engage in a number of activities and opportunities including:

  • a programme of lectures
  • creative exercises
  • seminars (with contributions from creative professionals and academics from across the world)
  • the opportunity to work with Transforming Narratives’ Creative Producers to deliver artistic work and contribute to our conference in February 2022

Transforming narratives is working on the delivery of the programme with Culture in Flux, a bespoke arts and development consultancy, and their colleagues from the Institute of Cultural and Creative Entrepreneurship at Goldsmiths College, University of London.

Wide range of backgrounds

Mark Dunford, one of the directors at Culture in Flux, said: “Our participants come from a wide range of backgrounds with a combination of skills, knowledge and experience.

“All of them are looking to develop leadership skills so they can work together to tackle problems faced across the Creative Industries. 

“They are all very committed to the sector and determined to extend the quality, range and number of opportunities for people underrepresented in it”  

The programme was delayed as a result of the COVID-19 and was initially developed as a blended programme combining online learning and a face-to-face workshop. 

However, the pandemic has shifted the entire programme online and it has been adapted to this new working environment.

“This process draws the expertise within the team and our collective experience in delivering comparable initiatives inside and outside Higher Education,” said Dunford.

“We’ve worked very closely with Culture Central for more than a year to ensure that the programme meets the aims of Transforming Narratives and thereby provides a raft of opportunities for new collaborations as well as delivering a high quality piece of professional development for all.”

Mix of emerging and established cultural leaders

The mix of emerging and established cultural leaders on the programme will work together to build their skills, confidence and knowledge as well as share their own expertise.

Through the programme they will extend their professional networks, which will enable them to learn more about the challenges and opportunities in leading collaborative international cultural activity.

The CLP will see the participants work in small groups, attend shared sessions and collaborate on a final project that will be presented to a group of industry specialists in November 2021.

Understanding the concepts of cultural leadership

As part of the initial stages the participants will be divided into four groups, known as Action Learning Sets, and each of these will work together over the next two months.

The aim is for participants to develop an understanding of the concepts of cultural leadership as well as exploring the challenges facing leaders today.

There will be a specific focus on the development and delivery of international work across borders.

Transforming Narratives Festival

The hope is to bring the participants together in Birmingham in early 2022 as part of the Transforming Narratives Festival.

This event will be the culmination of transforming Narratives’ four-year programme to build meaningful and enduring relationships between the cultural sectors in Birmingham, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

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