World Cultures Connect presents a new series of online Q&As with experts on topics relevant to international working. To kick off the series, on 19 February 2015 WCC invited On the Move to share their advice for mobility funding (“go & see” grants, residencies, other funding that covers travel/ accommodation/ subsistence) with our network. Below is a summary of the conversation.
This document is a summarised version of the questions asked during the Q&A on international cultural mobility funding on 19 February 2015 by Visiting Arts / World Cultures Connect in cooperation with On the Move.
These are not THE answers per se but more advice and tips to find more information related to cultural mobility issues
What do you mean by Cultural Mobility?
On the Move refers to this definition of cultural mobility extracted from the Study “Mobility Matters” by Ericarts:
The types of mobility formats On the Move shares through its news’ section or in its coproduced mobility funding guides* are for instance: Artists’ / writers’ residencies; Event participation grants; Scholarships for further / postgraduate training courses - including training/work placement; “Go and see” or short-term exploration grants; Market development grants; Support for the participation of professionals in transnational networks; Project or production grants; Research grants; Touring incentives for groups and Travel grants (valid for different purposes).
So the funding opportunities OTM identifies can be open to artists, cultural professionals and/or sometimes organisations. Everything depends on the eligibility criteria stated by the funding bodies. In most cases On the Move focuses on mobility funding opportunities where travels are at least partially covered.
What areas are connected to your opportunities?
On the Move (and World Cultures Connect) signpost information from various organisations (public, private, semi public, independent etc.) in Europe and increasingly from around the world. These are not "our" opportunities but the ones offered by the said organisations/funding bodies. We try to facilitate the access to opportunities and information related to cultural mobility and funding. All disciplines are covered as much as we can.
What are the general trends in mobility funding, i.e. regional differences or areas in the world where there is more or less funding, any “hot spots” that we can look out for?
This is a very interesting and huge question: compared with other world regions and despite disparities there are still in most cases public funding for culture/mobility in Europe (at national, and increasingly at regional/city levels), complemented to a certain extent by EU related programmes. There are still important flows of artists' mobility within Europe despite disparities (Eastern/Southern part of Europe etc.). Compared with Europe, there are huge challenges of intra-mobility within continents / world regions (Africa, Asia, Latin America, Central Asia/Europa). Some funds and initiatives are trying to cope with this imbalance like Arts Network Asia and Art Moves Africa in their respective world regions. Support mechanisms to enhance mobility within the “Global South” are still a huge challenge, see however this interesting initiative:
What would be your advice as a first step to look for funding for an art project taking place in Latin America?
As far as On the Move is concerned, we have not yet been able to cover Latin America with our mobility funding guide (we are still looking for a partner for anybody interested!)
But of course, when available, we share calls and opportunities for this region. See this link:
Also you can browse this web repertory that we did in partnership with RES ARTIS:
Check as well this latest call by Arts Collaboratory:
If you are based in Spain, you can also check the cultural mobility funding guide for Spain as some funding schemes are related to Latin America:
I will be sharing the link of On The Move’s website with UK museums and gallery professionals through the Working Internationally Project I manage.
I will be sharing the link of On the Move’s website with UK museums and gallery professionals through the Working Internationally Regional Project I manage. A lot of museum and gallery professionals are interested in finding out about opportunities to fund international travel to get longer term networks and collaborations off the ground.
For museums, you can also check NEMO http://www.ne-mo.org/
in Europe (Network of European Museum Organisations) and for the Asian connection, you can check asemus.org (Asia-Europe Museums Network).
Another interesting one from someone in advance – any recommendations for funding for travel & networking between South Korea, Germany & Argentina?
For Korea, check the cultural mobility funding guide (KAMS may be a relevant funder):
For Germany, check the cultural mobility funding guide:
And this great website coordinated by ITI-Germany and IGBK, having a special funding section:
For Argentina, in terms of resources, this is more challenging but a good entry can be this guide:
Funding may be found at the city levels and in universities as well.
Do you have any top tips for people applying for mobility funding for the first time?
I would say the most important is to read carefully the eligibility criteria in order not to waste time in applying for funding which is not targeted at your particular project. And another tip may be to do some good research on funding available and know why you wish to engage into these mobility experiences (be it a touring, training, residency etc.)
By the way, in general, in order to delve into another country’s context, it is maybe good to refer to some concise and useful country reports like the ones produced under the preparatory action of culture in EU external relations (30 countries are covered outside EU)
or for Asia and Europe with the ASEF (Asia Europe Foundation) culture360.org portal (under the “countries” headline).
So another question from the world of film: What about funding to visit USA & Europe to create a documentary, where the purpose would be to visit archives and to conduct interviews? Question submitted from Africa by a filmmaker.
Thanks for this question. I am more thinking in terms of funding related to development of productions (doc/film/cinema). For the US, see the Sundance Institute (programmes towards Africa), current call with OIF as well:
See in France through the cultural mobility-funding guide, under "Focus Cinema"
And also this call (still one deadline to go):
See as well the guide open to any nationality (with some calls related to cinema):
Check also festivals like Rotterdam, Locarno with specific funding for continents like Africa and maybe as well the ACP+ cultures programme:
Hope this helps.
So another I am based in the UK, would you suggest any other funding opportunities for art practitioners from here?
Please check first the UK mobility funding guide:
And check out as well the programmes of British Council which are located in different parts of the world. They may be able to help. Depending on when you are based, you can also check at the regional levels (Creative Scotland, Wales Arts International etc.)
Do you collaborate with any other particular funding schemes towards socially engaged arts or community engagement creative activities?
It depends on the funds we identify. If some are related to these issues, we mention it (for instance in the cultural mobility funding guides):
In the news we share, we realise that there are more calls related to arts/culture and other sectors (eg. social, environment, minorities etc.)
Another question from Egypt: any sources to help Egyptian musicians work and collaborate abroad?
Thanks for this question. It depends on the world region he/she wants to focus on: the US just had the OneBeat call, France has BabelMed Festival, WOMEX can be also an option. You can also check this guide:
Looking for information on mobility funding between MENA of Africa and Asia, any tips?
For the Arab / MENA region, you can check this guide focused on 13 Arab countries (done with the Arab Education Forum with the support of KAMS):
For Asia, check the 19 guides (initiated and supported by ASEF):
For Africa, you can check Art Moves Africa and the opportunities shared by the Arterial network. Hope this helps. The Prince Claus Fund, Ticket Fund can be a good incentive as well.
Is there any travel grants open during the year? We need to travel from South Africa to Europe and Asia for our dance project.
For the trips to Europe, you may need to check with your host in Europe and also through EUNIC partners (British Council, Institut Français, Goethe Institut etc.)
For trips to Asia, this may be very challenging, have you checked the Prince Claus Fund, Ticket Fund?
Follow as well this very good resource platform for dance:
I am French/Spanish artist based in the UK, I have a disability and I am interested in finding more about funding international mobility. It seems this is not included in festivals, galleries, and residencies. I am currently applying for a residency in Mexico, Italy, Malta, Spain and France. Organisations have a set budget and this is not enough for me to travel and meet the specifics for my access needs. I hope to find out you can help.
This is a very crucial question which is rarely directly included in mobility type of support. Some funding bodies told us that they take such issues into consideration but they do not write them specifically in the guidelines/eligibility criteria. The only organisation providing advice and interest on your issue we could identify is in the US:
Any feedback or relevant information body on the issue of artists with disabilities and mobility is very welcome so that we can signpost and share the information.
Looking for like-minded organisations/researchers who did elaborated researches on funding trends to help customise the methodology they have developed to culture and art sector in the MENA region. Any tips and/or contacts?
For the MENA/Arab region, we use the common methodology used for all cultural mobility funding guides (introduction below).
Arab region’s guide:
The research was made by the Arab Education Forum based in Jordan which has extensive knowledge in the field and the region. See as well the reports (D’Art Report) produced by the IFACCA network. Some may be related to funding trends and their methodologies good references for you.
Finally the Budapest Observatory can be a good reference: