A strategy for culture: Five nation study of arts support systems

Tattersall, John A strategy for culture: Five nation study of arts support systems. Doctoral thesis, City University, London.

[thumbnail of Thesis document] PDF (Thesis document) - Submitted Version
Restricted to Repository staff only
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial Share Alike.



This thesis seeks to apply some concepts and theories from predominantly post 1960 research in organisational behaviour to the study of the Arts C ouncil as reflected through its policies , in the belief that few , if any , real attempts have thus far been made by academics to relate some of the profound difficulties of the public administration of the art to this branch of the sciences. The project is based on an examination of the assumption with which the Arts Council historically has justified both its general operations and its particular decisions . A close exam ination is made of past and recent statements of policy ( I am often make policy and advise in the treating decision making and policy purposes of this thesis ) , the main aim
ideological and structural determinants assuming that administrators making of policy and am making as synonymous for being to identify the various which bear upon decision making processes necessary for a subsequent evaluation of the various representative systems. These determinants vary from political pressures to aesthetic preconcept ions , and overt to covert hierarchical power structures within the framework . Specif ic areas of concern have revelved around the problems of co-ord ination , accountability and control of public subsidy to the arts and in par ticular , w hat model or m odels of organisational
structure and decision-making processes might successf ully reconcile traditional cultural criteria and alternative contemporary conceptions of artistic and cultural development and worth , including all current non-arterticism . In. particular, the research has focused on what might be termed the Ar ts Council ' s' secondary accountabilities ·' ( the w ord ' accountability ' is usually only used when explaining its formal relationships with Government), in respect to artistic standards , artists and members of the gener al public . This is accountability imposed from below the quango , a relatively undeveloped concept which this thesis exam ines in much greater detail . My points are illustrated by an examinat ion of the policies of the arts agencies in Great Britain , New Zealand , Australia , America and Canada . Further comparisons are made between the Arts Council of Great Britain and Sports Council of this country in view of the proposals in New Zealand and
Australia for a more integrated policy framework based on concepts of recreation and leisure which could result in a new Department of Recreation, Arts and Sport whose primary function would be to develop a national recreation policy to allow for co­ordinated development of all aspects of recreat ion, arts and sport. The exam ination is made largely from the point of view of organisation theory. For while I believe the cul tural debate outlined in chapter one represents the crucial question for arts councils to resolve , organisation theory fortuitously illustrates these larger issues and also suggests some means of resolving the conflict bet ween public accounta bility and responsibility to the development of the arts .

Repository Staff Only: item control page