A conference Cultural Economy: The Next Generation explored the possibilities of a new policy agenda for the cultural economy in Australia. The event was held at the Monash Law Chambers last month.
Organized by Justin O’Connor, Shane Homan and Mark Gibson in the new School of Media, Film and Journalism, it set out to challenge the narrative of the ‘creative industries’ where culture was reduced to its economic impact.
The easy “win-win” links between culture and economy were no longer so straightforward in a post-GFC, climate-changing world.
“Rather than seeking ‘economic impact’, a radical agenda for the cultural economy might re-assert its ethical-political imperative to challenge the injustices and dysfunctions of the ‘economic’,” Professor O’Connor said.
“The conference looked at how new approaches to the cultural economy might help us reframe cultural policy for the next decade.”
The cultural economy can be defined broadly as that set of practices, institutions and ‘imaginaries’ involved in the production and consumption of culture. The notion of cultural economy achieved three things.
First, it expanded the focus of cultural policy to include the wider systems within which cultural production and consumption take place.
Second, it suggested cultural as well as economic values be emphasised in policy objectives and outcomes. Third, it articulated ethical and cultural values relevant to how we organise our economies.
Keynote speakers for the conference were Professor David Hesmondhalgh, from the University of Leeds, and Marcus Westbury, from Renew Australia.
A final session heard contributions from Tom O’Reagan and Graeme Turner from the University of Queensland, long-time participants in these debates around Australian cultural economy.
The overwhelming sense at the conference was that the ‘creative industries’ moment had now lost its energy, becoming more of a problem than a solution.
In particular the lines it draws between art and culture and ‘commerce’ has become counter-productive.
A strong, diverse and innovative cultural economy in Australia, one capable of engaging confidently with the new giants of the Asia-Pacific, demand that we think seriously about a new approach to cultural economy would not just ask what kind of culture we want to produce – but what kind of economy we want to help us do this.
Tay and Turner launch Television Histories in Asia
Monash University lecturer in Communication and Media Studies, Dr Jinna Tay, launched her co-edited book, Television Histories in Asia, at Monash’s Caulfield campus on September 17.
Getting to know … John Tebbutt
Dr John Tebbutt is passionate about teaching and researching, and been lecturing in Communications and Media Studies at Monash for the 18 months.
Virginia TV shootings: murder as a media event
The macabre live murders of Alison Parker and Adam Ward in Virginia are a chilling watershed. Whatever the shooter’s motivations, the idea that journalists are targets for infamy seekers is now an idea in our culture.
Australian music exports under the microscope
Monash University’s Associate Professor Shane Homan will work with Professors Richard Vella and Stephen Chen at Newcastle University to examine the economic and cultural value of Australian music exports.
Bohemian Melbourne exhibition wins award
Bohemian Melbourne exhibition entrance. Photo: Patrick Rodriguez The Bohemian Melbourne exhibition, held during the 2014-2015 summer season … Continue reading Bohemian Melbourne exhibition wins award
Melbourne Dura’s tales of ‘intrigue and wonder’
Monash University senior lecturer Dr Tony Moore has contributed to the first issue of the Melbourne Dura, a unique print magazine that presents historical “Melbourne tales of intrigue and wonder”.
On Happiness and Aussie larrikins
An essay on Australian comedic subversion by Monash academic Dr Tony Moore is one of … Continue reading On Happiness and Aussie larrikins
Dani wins Herb Thomas Memorial Trust award
Dani Rothwell has won the Herb Thomas Memorial Trust award as the most outstanding journalism … Continue reading Dani wins Herb Thomas Memorial Trust award
Reading group: Aesthetics, Media & Cultural studies
School of Media, Film and Journalism academics Elizabeth Coleman, Justin O’Connor, and Paul Atkinson have … Continue reading Reading group: Aesthetics, Media & Cultural studies
Bohemian Melbourne celebrates city’s history with film festival and lecture series
This summer, the State Library Victoria has showcased Melbourne’s vibrant bohemian history with an exhibition … Continue reading Bohemian Melbourne celebrates city’s history with film festival and lecture series
Master of Communications and Media Studies
Further your understanding of communications and media systems both locally and globally, and focus on … Continue reading Master of Communications and Media Studies
Master of Cultural Economy
Develop your expertise in the independent arts and creative/cultural industries and working in cultural policy, … Continue reading Master of Cultural Economy