Recharting our course for the next four years: Creative New Zealand seeking feedback on proposed focus areas for 2022–2026

3 Mar 2022

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NEWS

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We’re seeking feedback on three proposed strategic focus areas for the next four years, through a discussion document we’ve released today. We’d love to hear from you by 31 March.

These focus areas reflect the strategic, operating and financial environment we’re in now and sit within the context of the 10-year strategic direction (Creating value for New Zealanders) we set in our Statement of Intent 2019–2029. We believe that sharpening our focus in these areas will contribute to lifting the sector out of the very challenging situation it continues to live through due to COVID-19. 

Since we established our strategic direction in mid-2019, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed our lives immensely – as people, whānau, communities and a society – both within Aotearoa and globally. 

While all areas of society have felt COVID’s impact, the arts have been disproportionately affected, time and again, because so much of the value the arts provide relies on people coming together to develop, present and experience work. 

Creative New Zealand Chief Executive Stephen Wainwright says, “While we largely believe our strategic direction remains relevant, our context now means there are areas we’ll need to give more focused attention to over the next four years. We’ve set these out in this discussion document and look forward to hearing your thoughts on the priorities we’ve identified.” 

The impact of COVID-19 has highlighted issues of sector resilience, sustainability and the lack of viable arts sector careers. 

During this time, we have also seen New Zealanders and people around the world turn to the arts as a source of solace. This has helped increase awareness of the vital contribution arts and culture make to the wellbeing of all New Zealanders, but there is more to do. 

We also need to focus on how we achieve equitable outcomes for all New Zealanders through our support. This discussion needs to recognise the different places we start from and historic patterns of investment as well as a consideration of Te Tiriti o Waitangi and our aspirations for how we will work in this context. 

To reflect this context, our proposed focus areas are: 

  • Resilience, including sector sustainability and sustainable careers 
  • Access, inclusion and equity, relating both to the services Creative New Zealand offers and the sector more broadly 
  • Wellbeing, embedding a recognition of the role of the arts and ngā toi in supporting the wellbeing of all New Zealanders. 

We’re also proposing a greater focus on partnerships, recognising that reciprocal relationships can increase the positive impact of our collective work for the arts.  

Our Statement of Intent will also reflect the thinking that underpins Te Kaupapa o Toi Aotearoa (the Creative New Zealand way). This programme seeks to articulate how we work in the context of our vision, purpose, values, Te Waka Toi Pātaka (our Mātauranga Māori Framework) towards achieving the goals we established in our strategic direction. Te Kaupapa o Toi Aotearoa aims to ensure we have the organisational culture, competencies and practices that will enable us to meet our aspirations under Te Tiriti o Waitangi and ensure we deliver public value for all New Zealanders. 

How you can have your say 

We invite feedback on this discussion document by 31 March 2022.  

You can provide your feedback by completing this survey or emailing us directly: strategy@creativenz.govt.nz. 

Feedback from this engagement will inform the development of our Statement of Intent for 2022 to 2026 and, from there, the development of our annual plans (Statements of Performance Expectations) for the next four years. 

Links: 

 

FAQs 

Why focus on these areas? 

In the context of our strategic direction 2019–2029 and in response to the current strategic, operating and financial environment, we’ve identified three strategic focus areas for the next four years. We believe that sharpening our focus on these areas will contribute to lifting the sector out of the very challenging situation it continues to live through due to COVID-19. 

The impact of COVID-19 has highlighted issues of sector resilience, sustainability and the lack of viable arts sector careers. We also know the vital contribution arts and culture make to the wellbeing of all New Zealanders, especially during these times. We also need to focus on how we achieve equitable outcomes for all New Zealanders through our support. 

We’re proposing focusing on the following areas to reflect this context: 

  • Resilience, including sector sustainability and sustainable careers 
  • Wellbeing 
  • Access, inclusion and equity 

We’re also planning to increase our focus on partnerships by adding Partnership for the arts to our four deliverables (what we do to deliver on our goals) of Investing in the arts, Developing the arts, Advocating for the arts, and Leadership in the arts. 

Are you doing a new Statement of Intent (SOI)? I thought your SOI was to see you through to 2029? 

We’re not creating a new SOI from scratch. Within our 10-year strategic direction set out in our SOI, we’re refining where our focus for the next four years should be, taking into account the COVID-19 context the world is grappling with. It’s important to us to test this with the arts community to make sure we’re on the right track. But we’re not starting from scratch.  

Feedback from this engagement will inform the development of our Statement of Intent for 2022–2026 and, from there, the development of our annual plans (Statements of Performance Expectations) for the next four years. 

Why the short consultation period? 

We’re identifying focus areas within our existing strategic direction, taking into account the COVID-19 context the world is grappling with. 

When we set our strategic direction for our 2019–2029 SOI, we consulted heavily with the arts sector, and your feedback shaped our direction for the next 10 years. 

It’s important to us to test this refining of focus areas with the arts community, but because we’re not starting from scratch and are still working towards our longer-term strategic direction which the sector has already fed into, we’re not consulting at the level that we would if we were starting from scratch. 

We’ve also heard from many of our communities through recent consultations about what’s important to them – this feedback is reflected in the Discussion Document. 

We’re also conscious the arts sector is under a lot of pressure now as a result of the Omicron outbreak. We don’t want to put additional demands on an already stressed sector.