Global Frictions Seminar Series: ‘Culture in development: Can culture be developed; and if so, whose culture and to what end?

2316c2b2-7f48-4a26-ba82-9bdcca007120Global Frictions Seminar Series,

Centre for Global Research, RMIT University,
Thursday, 23 June, 4.00-5.30pm

Session Theme: Culture in development: Can culture be ‘developed’: and if so, whose culture and to what end? 

CDN, through its association with RMIT University facilitated this seminar which explores the challenging role of culture in development, and its significance in contributing to desired futures.

Webinar: Renewal in the regions: re-imagining, re-thinking, re-generating regional places

RAA_White_Box_300x158-188x95Regional Arts Australia, Australia-wide, May 2016

Host: Ben Eltham

Presenters: Dr. Kim Dunphy, Justin O’Connor, Marcus Westbury

Culture is being promoted as a driver, a method and an endpoint of regional development. It is at the core of many current models for regeneration, designed to ignite a myriad of outcomes. But how realistic is this? Is it naive to talk of culture-led recovery in communities suffering high-level unemployment and infrastructure issues? What are some of the innovative models being used for culture-led regeneration across regional Australia? What are the opportunities for transformation in regional Australia? What are the obstacles? How can renewal be long-term, sustainable? How can it be measured? What might we have to change in our understanding of both culture and economy, to really move forwards?

Visit webinar website

Listen to webinar


Winter Webinar 2: The Case for Arts and Culture for Personal Wellbeing

RAA_White_Box_300x158-188x95Regional Arts Australia Winter Webinar Series: Igniting and Fuelling Conversations about Arts & Culture in Regional & Remote Australia

Wednesday 15 June, 11 am.

Host: Ben Eltham

Presenters: Dr Christina Davies, John Smithies & Alex Kelly

CDN’s Director John Smithies explored the topic of measurable cultural outcomes in depth in this webinar, along with other interesting panellists, addresses the topic: The case for arts and culture for personal wellbeing.


Presentation: Articulating the cultural value of cultural engagement LG NSW

NSW local government associationThe Local Government Association of NSW Arts and Culture Forum, NSW, April 2016

Presenter: John Smithies, Director, Cultural Development Network

At the Local Government Association of NSW Arts and Culture Forum, CDN’s Director John Smithies presented on ‘Articulating the cultural value of cultural engagement: making the intangible tangible‘.

In his presentation he addressed how the task of measuring the value of engagement in cultural activity continues to challenge policy makers, funders and practitioners. Researchers all over the world have been developing frameworks to enable this measurement, with varying degrees of success and take up. Many of these approaches confound the issue of measuring cultural value of cultural activity, by using proxy measures of social and economic value, leaving the fundamental task of cultural value assessment unresolved. This presentation took on that challenge, in providing both a schema for measuring cultural outcomes of cultural activity and a series of measures derived from theory to enable that assessment. 

The forum featured presentations from key arts and culture sector representatives, followed by a networking event. The program of speakers and panellists included representatives from: the Office of Local Government; the National Local Government Cultural Forum; Arts NSW; the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage; the State Library of NSW; Regional Arts NSW; Museums and Galleries NSW, and representatives from local government in a panel discussion.

For more information click here

The 6th National Local Government Cultural Forum, Adelaide, 5th November 2015

In November 2015 CDN held the sixth National Local Government Cultural Forum, hosted by the City of Adelaide. This program works towards stronger cultural development practice in local government across Australia and invites members to do this with a national perspective. Representatives from Australia’s capital cities, the Australia Council for the Arts, the Commonwealth Ministry for the Arts and the Australian Local Government Association met to develop their strategic plan for current and future work of the program. The Cultural Forum commenced in 2013 for a three year term and will continue in 2016-2018 thanks to support from the Australia Council for the Arts. A communique reporting details of the meeting will be available from CDN’s website in the coming weeks.


Presentation: A Schema of Outcomes for Cultural Engagement

PrintAustralasian Evaluation Society Conference, Melbourne, September 2015

Presenter: Dr. Kim Dunphy, Research Program Manager, Cultural Development Network

CDN contributed to the recent Australasian Evaluation Society Conference in Melbourne, with Dr Kim Dunphy making a poster presentation on CDN’s draft schema of outcomes for cultural engagement. This schema intends to be offered as an evaluation framework suitable for organisations, including local government and some arts agencies, that have a community change or development agenda in their work.

Poster presentation available here

Presentation: Outcomes of urban place-making projects: a holistic assessment

logo-globalcitiesThe Regional Studies Association Inaugural Australasian Conference, Melbourne, August 2015

Presenter: Dr. Kim Dunphy, Research Program Manager, Cultural Development Network

Yuji Weisgard, Intern, Cultural Development Network and Roskilde University, Denmark presented by Kim Dunphy, Research Program Manager, CDN Principal Research Fellow, Global Cities Research Institute, RMIT University.

This research explores the intersection between cultural and urban development. Drawing on concepts of place and place-making, by approaching cultural initiatives as places and a planning process as a place-making process, the report demonstrates how the two fields of cultural and urban development intersect. The research from this presentation invites us to consider how proper assessment of cultural initiatives could benefit planning processes. Included are two case studies from Melbourne and Copenhagen, where an assessment framework devised by CDN has been used to evaluate cultural initiatives within several value domains.

This research was presented at the conference ‘Rethinking the Region and Regionalism in Australasia: Challenges and Opportunities for the 21st Century” organised as part of the Regional Studies Association Inaugural Australasian Conference in Melbourne, on August 31- September 2, 2015. The conference explored themes from all areas of regional analysis, with a particular focus on the ‘cultural’ dimension of change.

Download Conference Presentation

Professional Development Forum: Cultural Development Planning in Local Government in Victoria, 2015

Municipal Association of Victoria, Melbourne, May 2015

This forum built on last year’s series on cultural development planning that involved 75 staff and elected representatives from 50 Victorian councils. It offered extended material from last year’s series and a refresher of concepts presented in the 2014 series. (more…)

Forum: Victorian Local Government Multicultural Issues Network Forum, 2014

Enhancing Cultural Wellbeing and Cultural Citizenship Through the Arts, October 30, 2014 at the Museum of Australian Democracy at Eureka

This event was presented by the Victorian Local Government Multicultural Issues Network with the Municipal Association of Victoria, the Cultural Development Network and Multicultural Arts Victoria, and hosted by City of Ballarat and supported by City of Melbourne, City of Greater Dandenong, City of Monash and Brimbank City Council. (more…)

Webinar: Culture in the Community: Indicators of Arts, Culture and Heritage in Australia

The Australian Community Indicators Network, Australia, June 2014

Presenters: Dr. Kim Dunphy, Research Program Manager, Cultural Development Network; Lisa Conolly, the Australian Bureau of Statistics; and Leigh Tabrett, former Director of Arts Queensland.

This webinar discussed the importance arts, culture and heritage in the creation of vibrant communities, and available indicators/data sources to measure their impact and influence.

Culture in the Community flyer

Workshop: Approaches to Planning and Evaluation for Local Cultural Development

AAEAAQAAAAAAAAO0AAAAJDY1Yjg5YzFlLTY5ZDYtNDYzNy1iNDI4LTZmNzY0Y2RkYjVmOQUnknownA one day workshop for local government and other cultural development professionals, presented by CDN in collaboration with Country Arts SA, City of Port Adelaide, June 2014

Presenters: Dr. Kim Dunphy, Research Program Manager, Cultural Development Network in collaboration with Country Arts SA

This workshop was designed for cultural development professionals to assist with effective planning and evaluation of their activities. Participants were introduced to the concept of evidence-based approaches to planning, and frameworks that facilitate this, specifically program logic and theory of change.  


Public Forum and consultation: Vital Signs, Melbourne, March 2014

Cultural indicators for Australia: local and national approaches, 13 March, 2014, RMIT University

What to measure and how to measure it has been an ongoing challenge in the cultural sector. The Vital Signs public forum organized by Arts Victoria and the Cultural Development Network in March 2014 provided an opportunity for stakeholders to share information about the collection and use of cultural data. This formed part of national consultations on the Vital Signs paper on national cultural indicators. (more…)

Forum series: Cultural Planning Forums Across Victoria Wrap Up, 2014

MAV Logo 1

In July, the CDN team competed the final in our series of 15 forums on cultural development planning for local government. The last event in Melbourne on July 30 was followed by an information session for other stakeholders in the cultural planning process. Elected representatives, CEOs, senior managers, local leaders and local artists from across Victoria attended the event to hear from John Smithies, CDN’s Director, about the framework for cultural development planning that CDN and participants worked on together over the three month series. The engagement of councils in the series was very encouraging, with more than 50 of Victoria’s 79 councils participating over the period.


Workshop: Approaches to planning and evaluation for local cultural development, August 2013

Presented by Murray Arts and the Cultural Development Network


Presentation: Cultural Planning Processes in Local Government in Victoria

ACELG Local Government Researchers Forum, Adelaide, June 2013

Presenter: Kim Dunphy, Research Program Manager & Linda Tavelli, Visiting Researcher, Cultural Development Network

The Cultural Development Network was pleased to contribute to research expertise about cultural development in local government at the Researchers’ Forum presented by the Australian Centre for Excellence in Local Government.  The paper presented by Kim Dunphy, drew from research undertaken by Linda Tavelli who worked on a research placement with CDN in late 2012.

Conference website


Culture and Community Researchers Network 2009 -2012

The Culture and Community Researchers’ Network was a partnership between CDN and Victorian College of the Art and Music’s Centre for Cultural Partnerships.  It brought together researchers from universities in Australia and other countries who were interested in cultural development, social change, creative methodologies, artistic intervention, and/ or community research themes.  In 2013, a new program is being led by VCA-MCM’s Centre for Cultural Partnerships: Social Practice in the Arts Seminar Series.


Presentations: The Cultural Sustainability Stream of the People and the Planet: Transforming the Future Global Conference

logo-globalcitiesThe Global Cities Research Institute (RMIT) and the UN Global Compact Cities Programme, Melbourne, July 2013


Adriana Partal, Research Assistant, Cultural Development Network
Blanch Higgins, RMIT University
Jade Lillie, CEO, Footscray Community Arts Centre Steph Vajda, Ferment Collaborate
Kevin Murray, Kit Andrew, Samantha Fabry, RMIT University
Shanene Ditton, Researcher, Gold Coast

The Cultural Development Network was pleased to partner with organisers to convene the conference stream on cultural sustainability. A fascinating range of presentations from speakers from countries including China, South Africa, New Zealand, UK, and across Australia, addressed the complex relationship between culture and sustainability.  Panel themes included: Culture and society nexus; Education, culture and sustainability; Cultural heritage and sustainability; The relationship of the arts to cultural sustainability; Culture, sustainability and cities.

Conference website


Culture and Community Researchers’ Network: November 2012

Dr Aneta Podkalicka: “Youthworx: generating social value through cultural production and enterprise”
Kerrie Schaefer: “Post-capitalism, community and performance in the work of MED Theatre and Theatre Modo.”


Culture and Community Researchers’ Network: October 2012

Arts and Development
Xris Reardon: “The Legacy of Augusto Boal’s work on Theatre of the Oppressed: where have we gone, where we have come to”.
Chris Parkinson: “The ethics and aesthetics of community-based arts practice”.
Cymbeline Buhler: “Peace-­‐Building Theatre in Sri Lanka. First Steps and Considerations”.


Culture and Community Researchers’ Network: September 2012

Presenters: Pamela Bruder: Visual methods: articulating when words fail
Dr Anne Harris:
Ethnocinema and 21st century applied video


Culture and Community Researchers’ Network: August 2012

Presenter: Candice Boyd, PhD Candidate in the Department of Resource Management and Geography and the Centre for Cultural Partnerships, University of Melbourne, The notion of therapeutic space in art, clinical psychology, continental philosophy, and contemporary cultural geography


Culture and Community Researchers’ Network: June 2012

Presenters: Bo Svoronos, PhD Candidate at the Globalism Research Centre, RMIT University,  How Indigenous Festivals Create Spaces for Reciprocity and Community Identity- observing impacts of festival sustainability.
Miriam Fathalla, Masters student in Planning and Community Development, LaTrobe University, Principles of the Burning Man Festival and characteristics of successful community development and engagement.

Culture and Community Researchers’ Network: May 2012

Presenters: Jan Hendrik Brueggemeier: How to reclaim my life in my city? – Towards a manual of small steps to a sustainable urban citizenship and
Joji Mori: Designing Interactive Technologies For Commemorating Tragedy: A Black Saturday Bushfire Case Study


Culture and Community Researchers’ Network: April 2012

Urban Space and the Creative City
Presenters: Kelum Palipane: Towards a Sensory Production of Urban Space: Developing a Conceptual Framework of Inquiry based on Sensory Embodied Practice and
Dr Kate Shaw: Re-thinking the ‘creative city’: reconciling global strategies with local subcultures


Making Culture Count: Rethinking measures of cultural vitality, wellbeing and citizenship international conference, Melbourne, May 2012

logosExploring the burgeoning field of cultural and community indicators.

Visit the Making Culture Count website.

Public Forum: Practitioners’ Voices – artists in community settings, Melbourne, May 2012

A unique forum on practice for professional artists working in community. What we do and why it matters.


Culture and Community Researchers’ Network: March 2012

Participatory and Creative Research
Presenters: Devora Neumark: Collaborative Performance Art in Search of Beauty and Home: Making a Case for Participatory Research and Co-creativity
Jen Rae: Riparian Project (more…)

Culture and Community Researchers’ Network: February 2012

Creativity/Creative Risks
Presenters: Jim Chambliss, Can Epilepsy Enhance Creativity in Visual Art?
Nilgun Guven, critical reflections on practice led research as a performance, community and arts worker. (more…)

Culture and Community Researchers’ Network, November 2011

Presenter: Poppy de Souza, Video-as-process: experiments in thinking with a video camera (more…)

Culture and Community Researchers’ Network, October 2011

Presenter: Lesley Pruitt, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Victoria University
Shifting Identities, Becoming Peacebuilders (more…)

Culture: A New Way of Thinking for Local Government International Conference, Melbourne, October 2011

On how the inclusion of culture with social, environment and economic policies strengthens local governance (more…)

Culture and Community Researchers’ Network, September 2011

Presenter: Michelle Evans, PhD candidate, Melbourne Business School
Be:Longing – Enacting Indigenous leadership in the arts (more…)

Culture and Community Researchers’ Network, August 2011

Emma Blomkamp, Emma Blomkamp, PhD candidate, VCAM and University of Auckland,
The political context of cultural indicators: evidence and values in democratic governance

Kim Dunphy, PhD candidate, International and Community Development, Deakin University
Understanding outcomes of participatory arts: a framework for evaluation

Marnie Badham, PhD student at the Centre for Cultural Partnerships in the Faculty of VCA and MCM, University of Melbourne.
‘Naming the World’ as representation: a relational approach in socially-engaged arts and cultural indicators (more…)

Culture and Community Researchers’ Network, July 2011

Sue Doyle, Policy and Research Unit, Arts Victoria
Evaluating Victoria’s Community Arts Advisory Network, Castanet
Anne Kershaw, PhD candidate, Management and Marketing, Deakin University
The Influence of Museums’ Relational Capabilities on their Work with Culturally Diverse Communities


Culture and Community Researchers’ Network, June 2011

Dr. Andrea Lemon, Creative Director of Cha Cha Sam and Kids Thrive
This Place has No Place: Traditional Circus, Community and Belonging
Adam Broinowski, University of Melbourne
In search of commonalities in multiple sovereignties: a discussion of intercultural and multilingual performance collaborations in Cardiff, Dili, Jordan, Tokyo


Culture and Community Researchers’ Network, May 2011

Emma Blomkamp, PhD candidate, VCAM and University of Auckland
‘Evaluating Community Wellbeing and Cultural Policy: From Theory to Practice’


Public Forum: Arts, Local Government & Climate Change, Arts Talk, Melbourne, May 2011

Exploring ways that local councils are using the arts to address issues of environmental sustainability, especially climate change, through the arts.


Public Forum: Home Lands, Arts Talks, March 2011

Constructing home and identity with young people from refugee backgrounds through media and technology.


Culture and Community Researchers’ Network, March 2011

Isabel Jackson, PhD candidate, the Australian Centre of The School of History and Philosophical Studies. University of Melbourne
I am, you are … but who are they and why are they looking at us like that?
Georgia Birch, PhD candidate, Deakin University
How does previous physical activity and motherhood influence activity levels in later life for older Somali women living in Melbourne, Australia?


Culture and Community Researchers’ Network, February 2011

Dr Mark Selkrig, Faculty of Education, La Trobe University, Albury-Wodonga Campus
Community-based Artists: Dialogues of Identity and Learning


Public Forum: International Perspectives, Melbourne, December 2010

Arts residencies in the Asian Century
Asialink Arts Residency Program
presented by the Cultural Development Network, City of Melbourne and Asialink


After Sorry, What Next? one-day conference, Melbourne, November 2010

Local government connecting with Aboriginal communities (more…)

Culture and Community Researchers’ Network 2010

Informal group met monthly for discussion and collegiate support


Public Forum: Gettin’ It Right, Melbourne, June 2010

Community consent and the arts


Presentation: Increasing opportunities for people with a disability to participate in the arts: assisting local government and other cultural development workers to develop capacity

imagesArts Activated: Accessible Arts National Conference, Sydney, 2010

Presenter: Dr. Kim Dunphy, Program Manager, Cultural Development Network

Presentation / Resource list / Conference website

Artists’ Talk: The International Perspective, Melbourne, December 2010

Artists and artsworkers talk about their experiences overseas


Presentation: Cultural Development in Local Government

Unknown-1Yarra Ranges Arts Network, Shire of Yarra Ranges, December 2009

Presenter: Kim Dunphy, Program Manager, Cultural Development Network.

Download handout with list of readings and resources

Public forum: Indigenous Arts Programs, Melbourne, November 2010

Models for engagement in local government


Presentation: Supporting clients to enjoy participating in the arts

ASSID Conference for Disability Support workers, Melbourne, November 2009

Presenter: Kim Dunphy, Program Manager, Cultural Development Network.

Handout: resource and ideas list for disability support workers

Presentation: Developing and Revitalising Rural and Remote Communities Through Arts and Creativity: a review of literature from Australia

Arts for Health Conference, Port MacQuarie, NSW, October 2009

Presenter: Kim Dunphy, Research Program Manager, Cultural Development Network

Download Presentation