By GiannaLia Cogliandro Beyens
ENCATC Secretary General and editor of the /encatcSCHOLAR
Our first monographic issue, on digitalization and the cultural field
In 2013 we launched the /encatcSCHOLAR as a response to a growing demand from our members for materials to be used in the classroom, for education and training on cultural management and policy. Thus, the /encatcSCHOLAR joined other ENCATC publications and media in our effort to capitalize on our members’ immense expertise and facilitate the knowledge flow among them. Since that very first moment, four issues have been released, with contents that dealt with a variety of topics, ranging from cultural diversity and art-based business learning or cultural policy, among others. We want to take this opportunity to sincerely thank, not only those of you who contributed to /encatcSCHOLAR in the past – by writing a piece, granting an interview, etc. –, but also all of you who warmly welcome the new publication and waited for each new issue.
Now, three years later, the editors of the /encatcSCHOLAR got together to look back and review this journey. While we believe that we can be proud of the quality and diversity of the contents published so far, we had the impression that there was room for improvement in what refers to the accessibility of those contents. As a result of this review process and with the aim of making it easier to find pieces on a specific topic, we are now bringing to you the first monographic issue of the /encatcSCHOLAR. From now on, each issue will focus on a hot topic in the field of cultural management and policy. In this way, teachers and professors, but also professionals or people generally interested on a specific theme, will be able to consult a whole set of materials – proceedings, teaching experiences, case analysis, angles, interviews and profiles of prominent actors in that given area –, from a multifocal perspective including contributions by experts from all over Europe and beyond.
We knew that the choice of the topic for the first issue following this new scheme might be understood as a “statement of intention”. With regard to this, we want to acknowledge that, while there are other topics that could have been equally suitable, it is not for nothing that we chose to focus on the intersection between the digital and the cultural field in this first monographic issue. On the 3rd and 4th December 2015, ENCATC organised a Masterclass on Digital Tools for Cultural Managers in Brussels, drawing on the information gathered through the 2014-2015 ENCATC survey “Use of digital tools in the arts and culture sector”, which showed that cultural professionals use digital technologies mainly for information and communication, rather than as a way of learning and developing new knowledge, or as a means for empowerment and participation.
The Masterclass counted on the participation as speakers of Peter Bary, CultuurNet Vlaanderen; Christopher Hogg, Goldmiths, University of London; Annick Schramme, University of Antwerp / Antwerp Management School and ENCATC president, and myself. This event was very warmly received, there were a considerable number of participants and they mostly assessed it as timely and fruitful, to the point that we thought that it would be interesting to dig further into this topic and listen to a wider range of voices. The pertinence of this topic is also endorsed by the increase in the events organised around this theme – such as the important Forum d’Avignon Ruhr, whose motto in 2015 was “Culture is digital – Digital is Culture” – or the proliferation of specific education programmes – see, for example, the BA Digital Culture of King’s College London, or the Digital Cultures programme of the University of Sydney, among many others.
Here you will find our contribution to this rapidly growing body of knowledge. . More specifically, this issue #05 of the /encatcSCHOLAR includes an interview to Chris Hogg, a social media researcher and expert working in online marketing since late 1999; an article analysing the challenges and opportunities of digital archives, by Sara Radice; a reflection on the fourth industrial revolution and its implications in terms of labour market, economic factors and competences, by Bo Westas; a teaching experience on developing a digital curricular story, written jointly by Antonia Silvaggi, Federica Pesce and Steve Bellis; a case analysis of the Lights On! Project, by Pekka Vartiainen; a reflection on how expanded media education contributes to active citizenship and an inclusive public sphere through the case analysis of the Doc Next Network; and the proceedings of the above-mentioned Masterclass, including access to the full report elaborated with the data of the survey.
We finally want to warmly thank all the people who made this issue possible with their generous contribution, and invite all of you to collaborate in the future by suggesting topics, or sharing your knowledge and expertise. Enjoy this first monographic issue of the /encatcSCHOLAR!
As Secretary General of ENCATC, GiannaLia Cogliandro Beyens is responsible for the overall performance of the organization, working with all staff to ensure inter-departmental coordination to accomplish the organization’s strategic plan as established by the ENCATC Board. She works to implement the innovative and ambitious programming, planning and operational tools and policies to advance the organization’s mission and goals. She is also responsible to advocate for, and communicate the interests of the organisation at the International and European level to key stakeholders. GiannaLia joined ENCATC in 2004. She is Italian and she holds a degree on holds a Degree in Political Sciences – International relations, an M.A. in European & International Career Studies and an M.A. in European Constitution.