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Past Issues

AEA Consulting: The Platform


A round-up of articles focused on commentary and analysis of current developments in the cultural sector. 

Plus: AEA is hiring a Research Analyst – see more details at the bottom. 

Some articles may be behind a paywall. 

Global Cultural Districts Network

GCDN Convening: Lugano 2022

The Global Cultural Districts Network met in person in Lugano last week for the first time since Singapore in 2019. Hosted with panache and quiet efficiency by Lugano Arte e Cultura, sessions included topics on the moral dilemmas of cultural leadership; cultural development in sub-Saharan Africa; the climate crisis; technologies of the future; cultural flagships; and redefining safety and accessibility for public spaces. A full report from the GCDN & AEA teams is forthcoming, but Axios' Chief Financial Correspondent Felix Salmon provides a succinct summary in his weekly Capital newsletter. (Axios)

Does this change anything? 

How Artists Are Memorializing Victims of Mass Shootings, Again and Again and Again and Again

Artists have attempted to visualize the psychic scars and immeasurable grief that visits communities mourning the dead, but the frequency of the attacks has turned the memorialization of shooting victims into its own genre. And in recent years, local governments have created official processes for building monuments, sensing that more shootings are on the way. (Artnet News)

Looking Ahead: Insights from Our Museum Directors’ Research

Art Fund recently carried out the third in its series of annual research into the impact of Covid-19 on museums. Over two years on from museums’ doors first closing, Director of Programme and Policy, Sarah Philp, shares her view on what the research tells us about the current moment, and what Art Fund will be doing next. (Art Fund)


‘It’s Weird’: A Day at the Museum Helping Color-Blind Guests See Pink

Chau Chak Wing Museum is Australia’s first to offer visitors color-vision-enhancing glasses. So what happens when one man tries them on? (The Guardian

Archaeological Findings 

Lost Cities of the Amazon Discovered From the Air

While urban ruins remain extremely difficult to find in thick, remote forests, a key technology has helped change the game. Perched in a helicopter some 650 feet up, scientists used light-based remote sensing technology (lidar) to digitally deforest the canopy and identify the ancient ruins of a vast urban settlement around Llanos de Mojos in the Bolivian Amazon that was abandoned some 600 years ago. (Smithsonian Magazine

Ukrainian Soldiers Discover Archaeological Treasures While Digging Defenses in Port City Odessa 

Documentation of the archaeological site is currently impossible due to Russia’s military campaign to overtake the city, however images shared by the 126th Territorial Defense show its members transporting the artifacts, as well as several fragments of ceramics, to the Odessa Archaeological Museum for preservation. (ARTnews

Digital Frontiers

Can Copyright Protect Immersive Art?

Japanese immersive powerhouse teamLab is no stranger to copyright disputes, but the booming art form is still a difficult subject in legal terms. (ArtsHub)

A Museum with No Art: SF Exhibit Showcases the Rise of NFTs

“Although the art market has always lived on principles of scarcity, what the proliferation of NFTs both in the open market and in historic auction houses will do for the democratization of art is a new frontier. It could be that NFTs are the same exclusivity politics that the art market has thrived on, just packaged in a new and digital way,” writes Hailee Heinrich. (Peninsula Press)

Cultural Infrastructure 

Don’t Forget About the Creative Community in the Rebuild of US Infrastructure

The Kresge Foundation’s Rip Rapson and Regina Smith say, “let’s incorporate community voices – and local artists – in infrastructure projects from the very beginning to find transformational solutions to community needs.” (Smart Cities Dive


What Has Happened to France’s Grand Plans to Return Africa’s Heritage?

Five years ago, President Macron took the museum world by surprise when he announced a then-revolutionary restitution plan. Now, the country’s politicians are at odds about how to implement it. (The Art Newspaper

New Models

Museum Leadership: Taking the Pulse 2021

INTERCOM presents the results of the Museum Leadership Project that was initiated to understand how museums are dealing with new challenges and how their leaders are building resilience in their institutions. This report outlines this research and how it will inform the development of INTERCOM’s Knowledge-Sharing Platform for Museum Leadership. (INTERCOM)

The Critical Link Between Members and Museum Retail

In our “new normal,” museums are generally refocused on building their communities of support by way of membership, and retail can play an important role in engaging members. This makes understanding the critical link between members and museum retail even more important. (IMPACTS Experience

AEA is Hiring! 

Research Analyst (US / UK)

AEA currently seeks candidates for the position of Research Analyst to join us in our mission to harness the power of art, culture, and creativity to realize the full potential of people and places around the world.

Research Analyst is our entry-level consulting team position, a critical member of our highly regarded international arts consulting business. As a Research Analyst at AEA, you are a talented, culturally engaged, and culturally sensitive problem solver. 

Apply here

In other news... ever want to smell like Cleopatra? Researchers are combining ancient and ultra-modern techniques to recreate historical scents.

AEA Consulting is a global firm setting the standard in strategy and planning for the cultural and creative industries.

We are known for our candid and impartial advice that draws on deep knowledge of the cultural sector as well as robust research and analytical insight.

Since 1991, we have successfully delivered more than 1,200 assignments in 42 countries, helping clients around the world plan and realize vital and sustainable cultural projects.