Beyond Green - The Arts as a Catalyst for Sustainability




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Feb 17, 2016
by Patrick Wilson
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Beyond Green - The Arts as a Catalyst for Sustainability

Artists, urban planners, sustainability activists and policymakers gather in Salzburg for five-day program A street installation in Qingbu Sports Park. Photo by Yi-Lin Tsai

Practitioners and thinkers committed to promoting social, economic, and environmental sustainability through the arts and cultural innovation gather this week for the session Beyond Green:The Arts as a Catalyst for Sustainability from February 19 to 24, 2016, at Schloss Leopoldskron in Salzburg, Austria.

This program aims to to build on ground-breaking cultural initiatives to advance international and cross-sectoral links between existing arts and sustainability activities around the world, encourage more impactful awareness-raising efforts, and recommend innovative strategic approaches to achieve greater and longer-term impact.

The Salzburg session that is part of Salzburg Global’s long-running Culture and Arts Program is held in partnership with the Edward T Cone Foundation, the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, the Bush Foundation and Red Bull Amaphiko. It will bring together 58 participants of 28 different citizenships and spanning different sectors including artists, designers, architects and creative entrepreneurs to politicians, policymakers, environmentalists, urban planners, educators, scientists, game developers, community leaders, philanthropists, scholars, and business leaders. 

This will be a highly interactive session with expert presentations, demonstrations and debates between participants. The topics brought up within these discussions will then feed into flexible small group work to deepen practical discussions and problem-solving that will enable the Fellows to implement their ideas into tools and new approaches for future work, and arrange cross sectoral collaborations.

This session will attempt to facilitate dialogue and exchange new forms of networking and collaboration between the cultural sector and representatives of other sectors working in the areas of sustainability across all fields.

The event will also be hosting a travelling exhibition called Facing the Climate, in which five Swedish and five Austrian cartoonists take a sharp and disturbing look at the climate issue.

The Facing the Climate project is part of a bilateral cultural exchange series between Sweden and other countries around the world as a result of cooperation between the Swedish Institute, the Swedish Embassy in Vienna, the Caricature Museum in Krems and the University for Applied Arts in Vienna.

Previous sessions in the Culture and Arts Program have explored neuroscience and the sources of creativity and innovation in 2015 and conflict transformation through arts and culture in 2014. This year participants will attempt to raise greater awareness of the unique and often underestimated role of the arts in promoting sustainable strategies.

The Salzburg Global session Beyond Green: The Arts as a Catalyst for Sustainability is part of Salzburg Global’s long-running Culture and the Arts series. The session is supported by the Edward T. Cone Foundation, the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, the Bush Foundation and Red Bull Amaphiko. More information on the session can be found here: You can follow all the discussions on Twitter by following the hashtag #SGSculture.