Developing a sustainability framework for the cultural sector

Developing Sustainable Structures

At Creative Carbon Scotland we believe that, in order for change to happen, individuals, the organisations they work with, and the larger structures that those organisations operate within all need to be moving in the same direction. Individuals can’t change if their workplace is stuck, organisations can’t shift if their staff and other workers don’t want to, and organisations find it difficult to change if their stakeholders don’t encourage it.

One of our strategic objectives is therefore to influence the ‘structures’ that help shape the cultural sector so that they support and encourage individuals and organisations to engage with climate change and environmental sustainability.

For the years 2018-21 we are focusing on the funders and the strategic organisations that support the cultural sector as two structural forces that shape the world that cultural practitioners and organisations work within.

We have set as our aim that, by 2021, we want to see more funders and strategic partners in the Cultural Sector actively addressing climate change through their funding processes and criteria for membership and participation in their work.

We will do this by working with the main (private and public) funders of cultural activity in Scotland to:

  • Develop funding criteria that support their clients’ efforts to address climate change
  • Acknowledge and support relevant expenditure and effort in their clients’ annual budgets
  • Encourage them to provide funding for cultural projects related to climate change

And we will work with key strategic organisations (including Festivals Edinburgh, the Federation of Scottish Theatre, Scottish Contemporary Art Network and Youth Theatre Arts Scotland) to:

  • Develop membership/participation criteria that support action to address climate change
  • Provide or support relevant training for their members
  • Organise or support joint work by and with members on questions of carbon mitigation, climate change adaptation and influencing a more environmentally sustainable society

In late 2020 we plan to host an international conference that will showcase Scotland’s pioneering work in this field as well as learn from experience abroad. During 2017/18 we are concentrating on making contact with the main organisations in each group and building up our knowledge of good practice in these two areas, from both Scotland and further afield.

If you have any examples of good practice or want to help us with this work, please get in touch with Ben Twist.

Interested in keeping up to date on our Structures work? Contact Ben to sign up to his regular Twist List newsletter.

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About Creative Carbon Scotland

We believe cultural and creative organisations have a significant influencing power to help shape a sustainable Scotland for the 21st century.

0131 529 7909

Supported by

Creative Scotland logo City of Edinburgh Council logo

A project initiated by Edinburgh’s Festivals with key partners the Federation of Scottish Theatre and Scottish Contemporary Art Network

Edinburgh Festival City logo Federation of Scottish Theatre logo Scottish Contemporary Art Network logo


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