IN THE CONTEXT OF THE FIRST RESEARCH PROJECT INTO
“THE IMPACT OF ART, CULTURE AND CREATIVE INDUSTRIES ON THE AFRICA'S ECONOMY”
AN ARTERIAL NETWORK PROJECT FUNDED BY STICHTING DOEN
DEVELOPED AND IMPLEMENTED BY AGORALUMIERE INTERNATIONAL
IN PARTNERSHIP WITH CAJ
Pilot countries: Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Research timeframe : December 2008 to March 2009
Preparation period :July to November 2008
Delivery : April 2009
As indicated in Report I, Agoralumiere planned to organize a week training session for the researchers of the two first pilot countries. This second report gives an overview of the training session and its outcomes.
PROJECT OVERVIEW AND ITS OUTCOMES
1. Subject of the research project
Research into the impact of art, culture and creative industries on the African Economy
Agoralumiere International is conducting a research project for Arterial Network into the impact of the art, culture and creative industries on the African economy. As explained in the project itself , the art, culture and creative industries are often marginalized in Africa and are seen to have little impact on developmental issues of poverty eradication, job creation, rural and urban development or community livelihoods let alone on economic considerations of GDP, employment and export earnings.
3. The aim of the project is therefore to:
a. Identify African researchers in the field of the arts and creative economy and provide them with complimentary skills, training and mentoring to become increasingly proficient in research in this new area and presenting the case for the economic and developmental value of the arts, cultural and creative industries in the African context.
b. Initiate ongoing research into the African art and creative economy, to publish related documentation and reports on an annual basis and generally to produce the research required in favour of the creative sector on the Continent.
c. Produce the information and analysis that would feed into annual conferences on the art, cultural and creative industries and the African economy as a way of increasing public and private support in this area.
4. Expected outcomes
1. To collate research that has been done on the theme of the economic impact of the arts and creative industries in Africa over the last five years
2. To train Africa-based researchers to undertake such research in the short, medium and long term.
3. To research into the contribution of the creative industries in two pilot African countries. This project is to be concluded in the first semestre of 2009.
Included researchers from Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo, as well as officials from the Africa Union and Ethiopia.
Welcomimg session and introduction of the participants by Marc NEKAITAR
6. Context of the Training Session programme in Addis Ababa
This training programme is part of the global Creative Africa strategy in the section of capacity building and sharing of knowledge in the specific areas of the cultural and creative industries. This programme is a starting point in the implementation of the Creative Africa programme which corresponds with the key areas B and C of the Africa Union Plan of Action for the development of cultural and creative industries in Africa.
The training programme in Addis Ababa was designed to ensure coherence and coordination of the whole process in line with the Africa Union’s Agenda and avoid duplication of the same programmes on the Continent. This pilot project was presented to the Africa Union Commission and has obtained full support from the Commission. It was important to create the opportunity for the first group of African researchers to be trained in the very new creative economy sector to meet with the African Union Commission representatives and share the vision and the position of the Commission in regard to their pioneering work.
7. Main targets of the session in Addis
A better understanding of the concepts from the Cultural Industries and Creative Industries to the Creative Economy.
Acquirement of specific methodologies and tools required for the research in this new area.
The practical design of the research including a work plan and programme based on the acquired knowledge and training.
Other targets in Addis
Confirm the support of the African Union in this programme and also to take the programme to the five Regional Economic Communities
Introduce the programme to the national stakeholders in Ethtiopia for follow up on the Ethiopian chapter of Creative Africa including this research programme.
8. How did the session work?
The session started on 12th January with a plenary session in the afternoon where all participants were introduced to each other. It was followed by a presentation from Agoralumiere and statements by the two representatives of the Africa Union Commission confirming to the participants the African Union’s position and full support to Agoralumiere’s programme which is in line with the Africa Union’s Plan of Action for Cultural and Creative Industries in Africa.
Opening session to set the tone of the programme
The first session of the Creative Africa training programme started on 13th January where the trainer Avril Joffe from CAJ, South Africa, provided a consistant three part training agenda with relevant documents and slides to make the session more accessible to the researchers.
The first part of the training programme aimed at facilitating the Ucderstanding of the concepts, and was designed to present the definition of the various concepts and the ongoing evolution around the creative industries.
It aimed at making clearer to the researchers what is the scope and the context of their field of work in this new sector.
The second part of the training session was more technical and aimed clearly at providing the researchers with the adequate methodology and the right tools needed for the delivery of the research in this specific area. It aimed also at providing the opportunity for the researchers to learn concrete lessons from experiences in other parts of the world.
The third part of the session was an exercise aiming at moving the researchers from theory to practice in applying the acquired skills and knowledge from the training session into the design of the research.
Exercise in designing the project using the tools and methodology acquired at the training
The successful design of the research at the end of the training session, included the choice of methodology, tools and the research execution timeframe by the researchers themselves.
The Nigerian Mentor leading the research design exercise
The last part of the session was devoted to an official visit to the Africa Union Commission Headquarters.
9. Outcomes of the training session in Addis Ababa
a.The delivery of the training session.
The training session is in line with the results expected from the project as it delivered the training to African based researchers to be able to undertake the research in the short, medium and long term.
The participants posing in the hotel’s garden
b.The training session itself was an outcome for the researchers, the mentors and the guests from the African Union and from Ethiopia.
The session provided the necessary background and tools to enable the researchers to carry out their work with more confort in the Creative Economy area.
The second part of the training dealing with methodology and tools
The presentation of the concept was particularly important and useful to all participants who attended the session, as the information and knowledge on this new area is not readly yet available on the African Continent.
c.The documents and slides (manuals designed and developed by CAJ) on the the creative industries and the creative economy.
The access to the basic documents and slides designed by the trainer used during the training period are also made available to the researchers as guidelines for their future reseearch. The documentation and tools are private intellectual property rights made freely available to the researchers as part of the concrete legacy of this project.
d.The positive response and support of Africa Union Commission to this programme
Meeting the Acting Director of the AU Social Affairs Commission, Madame Mariama CISSE
After the full week of training, the participants led by Agoralumiere met with the Acting Director of Social Affairs, the Director of Culture and Sport, and officials of the African Union Commission at the AU headquarters.
During the meetings with the team, the AU reaffirmed its support to the programme which is in line the African Union’s agenda and is contributing to the implementation of the Africa Union’s Plan of Action for Cultural and Creative Industries Development in Africa.
e. The starting point of the African Network of the African specialized researchers in the Creative Economy.
Meeting photograph with the AU Officials
The training session also provided an opportunity for the team to discuss advantages and disadvantages when dealing with this area of research in Africa in terms of limitation in the information collection process and in broader knowledge access on the topic, due to the language barriers in Africa.
The mentors and the trainer in discussoin at coffee break
The participants in this first session of the Creative Africa training programme on the Creative Economy in Africa will also brainstorm with other African stakeholders in finding creative solutions to these problems including their economical, social and political implications for the African Continent.
The Mentors and DRC research team after consultation
Further discussions took place during and after the training session with the Ethiopian government and Ethiopian stakeholders on the implementation of the project in Ethiopia as well as with African Union on future developments of the programme in other African countries.
Pr Abiy FORD: University of Addis Ababa, representative of the Ethiopian stakeholders in the creative sector.
( PDF VERSION ) Research Project I : Follow up - Report II