Lesson 3: Leadership

Getting a cultural facility project off the ground, into development and then into sustainable operation is a complex, risky, time consuming and capital intensive process. It is difficult to understate the importance of leadership to project momentum and delivery. The right kinds of leadership plays a critical role in getting the project on the right track, keeping it focused on vision and mission and  attracting investment and enabling support.

Leadership may take a number of forms – all of which play an important role in project development:

  • Political Champions are community leaders, people with influence locally and politically, their involvement in and commitment to a project can be a critical factor in its ultimate success.
  • Community Leaders and Activists are the people with energy and enthusiasm who believe in the project, contribute to and share the project vision and have the enthusiasm to turn naysayers around and keep other supporters engaged with the project. Click here to read more about the Community’s role in the Creation of the Wychwood Barns.
  • Private Sector Leaders can play significant role in leadership, development capacity and the development of innovative solutions to the complexities of urban development. Not only do they bring significant resources to the table they can also offer development capacity in design, construction and project management. While leaders in the development community may appear to have profoundly different motivations from community activists (for example) Artscape has found that by aligning the needs and interest of these diverse stakeholders and partners around a bigger city-building agenda  which offers “win win win” solutions to problems that may seem intractable these apparent difference may be overcome.

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