Applications are now open for the new BASA Cultural Producers Programme, an intensive leadership accelerator training programme, which will also place candidates into South African creative and arts organisations that have identified the need for building leadership skills.
Supported by the British Council Cultural Economy programme, and partnered by Common Purpose South Africa, the successful cohort will receive training in business skills through the British Council’s Creative Economy E-learning programme, as well as micro-grants for the creation of new cultural/creative products.
In 2022, the participants will connect with other young hub managers and creators from Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and the UK through SOCreative Hubs Summit digital meet-ups to network and exchange ideas and opportunities for co-curation.
“There is increasing recognition in South Africa of the creative industries as a vital source of income for young people,” says Farai Ncube Tarwireyi, the British Council’s Head of Arts South Africa and Cultural Exchange Sub-Saharan Africa. “Through the Cultural Producers Programme, mid-level experienced cultural producers can advance their skills, gain confidence, build global relationships and networks, and share their knowledge about cultural intelligence in multi-sectoral/disciplinary cultural and creative environments. In turn, this will enable them to realise their potential and participate in strong and inclusive communities, create new businesses and careers, develop meaningful partnerships on an international scale, and meet market demands for creative and innovative work.”
“With news of the country’s unemployment rate climbing to 34.9%, the cultural and creative sector has the potential to provide low-barrier access to entrepreneurial opportunities and career development, particularly amongst the youth,” adds BASA CEO Ashraf Johaardien. “Leadership skills are essential in any sector. However, in the creative sector, these attributes are not commonly mentored or formally taught – especially in the arena of cultural production and management. For this reason, organisations and projects with great promise often plateau or fizzle out before fulfilling their true potential. That’s because the kind of training needed for sustained arts development is very different to the skill sets required for unleashing creativity – and that is precisely the gap that the Cultural Producers Programme aims to address.”
Aimed at experienced/mid-level cultural producers aged 18–35 years, the programme will create the next generation of upskilled leaders to take the sector forward; accelerating growth in skills development; capacitating global networks, and driving innovative new work in ever-changing markets. Its objective is to strengthen the creative economy ecosystem between South Africa and the UK.
The project will bring together a group of 25 mid-career creative and cultural producers already working in South Africa, united as a single network to enable innovative work practice.
“At Common Purpose, we are devoted to developing leaders who can cross boundaries – between geographies, generations, sectors, specialisations, backgrounds and beliefs. This is borne out of the realisation that we live in a world full of complex problems that cross boundaries and yet most leaders do not,” says Common Purpose South Africa CEO, Elsbeth Dixon. “That is why we are delighted to partner on the Cultural Producers Programme to equip the South African creative sector with skills that will allow them to work more collaboratively, build diverse and resilient teams, and be able to navigate the challenges posed by the disruptive world we currently live in.”
Applications for the Cultural Producers Programme are now open and the deadline for applications is 21 January 2022. Successful applicants will be announced in February. Click here for eligibility criteria, further information and to apply.
Notes to Editors
The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. It builds connections, understanding and trust between people in the UK and other countries through arts and culture, education and the English language. Last year, it reached over 80 million people directly and 791 million people overall, including online, broadcasts and publications. Founded in 1934, it is a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. It receives a 15 percent core funding grant from the UK government.
- For more information, see www.britishcouncil.org
Common Purpose is a not-for-profit organisation founded in 1989 that develops leaders who can cross boundaries. This enables them to solve complex problems both in organisations and in cities. We deliver face-to-face and online leadership programmes for multiple generations of leaders: from students in universities to senior leaders in organisations and society. We run programmes in over 100 cities and online, and have more than 100000 alumni, worldwide.
- For more information, visit commonpurpose.org
Business and Arts South Africa NPC (BASA) was founded in 1997 as a joint initiative between government and the private sector as part of a strategy to secure greater involvement in the arts and from businesses operating in South Africa. Constituted in terms of the Companies Act, BASA is registered as a public benefit organisation. BASA champions business investment within the arts, cultural and heritage sector, driving focused and sustained partnerships by unlocking shared value and fostering social cohesion.