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OMC Policy Handbook on Artists' Residencies
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Conclusions and recommendations
8
8.1 Conclusions
The phenomenon of artists’ residencies is thriving, changing and continuing to provide artists with excellent opportunities for creative work and collaboration. There is a need for advocacy, support and flexible solutions for some of the technical and regulatory barriers to growth. They remain a cost effective and far reaching programme that benefits artists, the arts, cultural organisations and the cultural field at large, local communities, participating cities and regions. The OMC group is convinced that artists’ residencies represent an important part of the cultural landscape.
8.2 Recommendations
Throughout the document a series of general observations have emerged that would improve the functioning of the artists residencies in the medium and long-term, namely: There is a need for better evaluation of artists’ residencies and better collection of standardised data and statistics. There is a need for more easily accessible information on practical, mobility related issues (for instance, regulatory issues) in the context of residency opportunities across Europe and beyond. Training and capacity building for participants, hosts and funders would create better and more sustainable impacts. Funding for artists' residencies creates a better and more equitable environment for artists and represents a long lasting investment in the arts. It is therefore recommended that funding bodies make provision for support of artists’ residencies in their schemes and encourage the private sector to step into new partnerships with artists' residencies.1Analysed in chapter 3. Since artists’ residencies contribute to economic and social regeneration strategies, it is recommended that funding bodies concerned with these issues also make provision for funding of residencies within their schemes. The creation and sustaining of networks improves the quality of experience, the impacts and the legacy of artists’ residencies.
The following specific recommendations address the above observations and assign actions to different stakeholders in artists’ residencies:
8.2.1 For policy makers
At the EU level
Promotion of good practice can be facilitated at the EU level, in part through the wide dissemination of this Policy Handbook. This would support the advocacy for the value of artists’ residencies in relation to artistic development, economic and social impacts. Access to funding for artists' residencies could be increased through support from EU funding programmes, like the EU Structural Investment Funds, Horizon 2020, etc. and access to residency programmes for young talents in the context of Erasmus+. Despite well-known methodological difficulties in obtaining comparable statistics on artists' mobility, the OMC group would recommend that an expert group tackles this issue by researching standards for these statistics so that data can be collected by the EU Member States. Collaboration and co-ordination of artists’ mobility information resources provided by EU Member States would reduce imbalances and obstacles for mobility. Despite limited competencies at EU level regarding social security and taxation, the EU is invited to facilitate the exchange of best practice among EU Member States, in order to reduce obstacles related to social security and taxation for artists and culture professionals working across borders, to support and improve their intra-EU mobility and to promote cultural exchanges and cultural diversity in the EU.
At the national level (EU Member States) The gathering of statistics and relevant qualitative and quantitative data on artists' mobility should be encouraged. EU Member States should look at their movement of people policies in general, and work towards the removal of regulatory and administrative barriers in the areas of their respective competencies (e.g. visa, social security, taxation). Member States are invited to revisit the issue of artists' taxation and more specifically the taxation of grants awarded to artists for artists' residencies, in particular through instruments of the new Work Plan for Culture 2015-2018.2http://data.consilium.europa.eu/doc/document/ST-16094-2014-INIT/en/pdf Artists’ residencies should be, wherever possible, signposted on Member States’ information platforms with particular reference to the sector leaders such as DutchCulture|TransArtists.3http://www.dutchculture.nl/en/residencies Inter-ministerial co-operation can be improved to ensure equal support for incoming artists and outgoing artists and for reducing obstacles to mobility. Inter-governmental communication at all levels of governance (sub-regional, local, city, etc.) can be improved in order to create a coherent strategy for artists’ residencies, both funding and development of premises. Following the good practice in the Nordic countries4http://www.kulturkontaktnord.org/lang-en/forms-of-funding/artist-residencies and the Visegrad group funding schemes5http://visegradfund.org/ , the OMC group would recommend that EU Member States consider the formation of regional consortia. EU Member States should acknowledge the importance of residencies in cultural policies by the creation and promotion of funding programmes that support movement of artists across borders and support artists’ residencies. National training and capacity building programmes should include intercultural competence as well as good practice in running residencies. Advocacy and inclusion in EU funding programmes, for example, the European Structural Investment Funds, including European Territorial Co-operation instruments, should be improved. Funding agencies should maintain an open-minded approach to residencies to allow new forms and ideas to emerge and develop.
At the regional/local/city level This is the level at which most of the venues and sites for residencies are funded. The OMC group recommends that the relevant funding should be maintained as a priority, despite increasing pressure on budgets. The inclusion of artists' residencies programmes in funding schemes across disciplines and sectors e.g. in regeneration strategies should be advocated and sustained. Regions should include residencies' related information in promotional material for the locality, acknowledging their positive impact on regional/local/city profiles.
8.2.2 For cultural organisations and artists
To maintain good practice, the OMC group recommends that the cultural organisations and participant artists:
● Ensure there are clear, well-articulated aims and shared objectives by all parties involved.
● Encourage wide and appropriate communication and dissemination of information, opportunities and local knowledge, especially in third countries.
● Attend targeted training (workshops and support) for the artists, the host(s), the community, and students.
● Have realistic expectations of the residencies and particularly when working with non- arts and cultural organisations. They should also ensure a non-exploitative, inclusive practice by all stakeholders.
● Ensure good evaluation, documentation and feedback to inform future practice.
● Develop new and sustainable networks to create more impacts and legacy.
 
1     Analysed in chapter 3.  »
3     http://www.dutchculture.nl/en/residencies  »
4     http://www.kulturkontaktnord.org/lang-en/forms-of-funding/artist-residencies  »
5     http://visegradfund.org/  »