Moore College Panel Foregrounds Cultural Policy in the Context of the Philadelphia Mayoral Race

Our contributors Virginia Maksymowicz and Blaise Tobia report on a recent panel at Moore College of Art and Design devoted to talk about cultural policy in light of the current mayoral election campaigns.

As part of Conversations @ Moore, the panel “New Visions for Cultural Policy” brought together three prominent figures from the field: Patricia Wilson Aden (head of the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance), Jane Golden (founder and head of Mural Arts Philadelphia) and Jason Schupbach (Dean of Westphal College at Drexel University and a veteran of the National Endowment for the Arts). The panel was moderated by Linda Earle (Arts Management at Tyler University).

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The unanimous position of all four participants is that it is crucial for the cultural sector of Philadelphia to demand commitments of major support from any future mayor. It was pointed out that the cultural sector brings more than $3.6 billion to Philadelphia’s economy but is not represented at the highest levels of city government. (The current Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy has a very modest operating budget and has little opportunity to interact with the City’s major departments.) The panelists spoke about the need for the various players in the arts in Philadelphia to develop a unified voice in arguing for more attention and more funding from City government. It was also suggested that a cultural policy platform be drawn up that could be endorsed by mayoral candidates.


Patricia Wilson Aden proposed that the organization she heads is well positioned to take the lead in bringing together the City’s cultural players, which have diverse natures and range from small nonprofits to high profile institutions. And, while the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance will be sponsoring a mayoral candidates forum (March 30 at Taller Puertorriqueño), she and the other panelists urged that the importance – and important contribution – of Philadelphia’s cultural sector be raised at every mayoral candidates forum (and there will be dozens of them).

For more info about the mayor’s race can be found here.
Conversations @ Moore: New Visions for Cultural Policy
Past Conversations @ Moore programs can be found here