Upcoming Program


As the world confronts the compounded impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, climate crisis, and structural injustices, societies are bracing for a protracted and complex period of reassessment, reimagination, and restructuring. The culture and arts sector must be at the table and included in decision-making processes as societies seek to eschew a return to “normal” and instead build back better. 
As part of its 2021 program on Humanizing Power of the Arts, Salzburg Global’s Culture and the Arts series will explore the intersections between the arts and culture sector and the following four interrelated strands of work: climate, health, education, and justice. This group will focus on reimagining creativity in education and learning
By invitation only.

Children today, regardless of where they live, need real world skills to address the needs they will face in the future – skills such as collaboration and teamwork, creativity and imagination, critical thinking and problem solving. Studies show that countries around the world are moving towards an explicit focus on skills such as creativity. With rapid changes in labor markets, business leaders are citing creativity as one of the top skills they are looking for when hiring and promoting employees.

The creative thinking that children develop through play today can support them in everyday challenges, as they contribute to their communities, and eventually as they work to address the world’s social, economic, and political issues. 

While there is a widely shared cultural understanding of art and creativity as being a way to express emotions and ideas to others, arts education has often been placed at the periphery of the education field and is often mischaracterized as secondary to STEM subjects. Despite this growing recognition, the arts are often the first subjects to be removed from curricula when education funding is scarce. Urgent action is needed to better support the development of creativity in children, particularly through education systems.

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This 90-min focus group is one of a four-part series framed around the intersections between the arts and culture sector and the following four interrelated strands of work: 

  • Building Back Greener: Mitigating climate change and designing a greener planet
  • Building Back Healthier: Promoting community health and individual well-being through the arts
  • Building Back Smarter: Reimagining creativity in education and learning
  • Building Back Fairer: Advancing social justice and processes of decolonization

The four focus groups will culminate in a three-day hybrid in-person/online program in November 2021, The Humanizing Power of the Arts: Building Back Better.

Focus Group Questions
  • How can we better support the development of creativity in children, particularly through educational systems?
  • What does this look like, and how do we get there?
  • How can we reimagine creativity in education and learning?
  • How can we ensure that creativity and arts-based learning are embedded within curriculum reform agendas?
Participant Profile

Each of the four focus groups will include experts in research, policy, and practice from the four respective focus areas: climate, health, education, and justice. They will also be joined by technology innovators, anthropologists, cultural philanthropists, and media representatives.

The culminating three-day hybrid program in November will convene an interdisciplinary and inter-generational group of approximately 60 creative practitioners, researchers, and policymakers from around the globe to forge a crucible for strategic dialogue.