Dodgy Sponsorship

Elspeth Murray, 28 July 2012

Who called it? Richard Medrington

Who was at it? Emilia Weber Nic Green Helen Davies Elspeth Murray Gary McVair Tania Czajka

Summary of Discussion:
It's a two-sided coin, innit?
(The illustrations below are a visual summary of the discussion - thank you Elspeth).

We need an integrated ideology.
What is the cost of making ethical decisions? Radical objectors working from without? Tempered radicals working from within?

He who pays the piper...?
Or can the piper call the tune?

Who has the POWER?

Public arts funding: What is the perceived value of art in society? Money into the system or money up in smoke?

Private arts funding:
What is the responsibility of the artist to research where the money is coming from? Is it OK within an organisation just to separate the artists from the people who find the funding?

Helpful websites:
Corporate Watch
Spin Watch
Arts & Business
Is there a ‘Sponsor Watch’?

We need to recognise our own power.
Can we envision a time when rather than going cap-in-hand to the big sponsor they have to come to us - and we can say no?

We have equal opportunities policies, disclosure of criminal records, accessibility, inclusivity ... what about transparency when it comes to sponsors? What do they have to reveal? What do theatres and other venues have to reveal?

What is the future?
As public funding shrinks, private sponsorship will increase.
How can we challenge the cuts and learn the best possible lessons from good

philanthropy habits from other countries (North America, we mainly mean you - and we know that not all your corporate sponsorship habits are good ones!)

Yes we have a carbon footprint but we also have a carbon handprint - or is it an artistic footprint? Whatever - there's a balance to strike between ethical dodginess and artistic angelicness.

Finding the balance - Occupied by sponsors OR
Occupy arts sponsorship

Having a dialogue, a conversation with sponsors and with venues about sponsorship. Often the artists are the last ones to know who is associating themselves with their show.



funding, Funding, sponsors, Arts, arts, artists, business, autonomy, sponsorship, environment, Sponsorship, greenwash, philanthropy, carbon footprint