Better planning using validated measurable outcomes.

Julie Marlow offers an advisory, consultancy, writing and editing service for local governments developing and delivering cultural development plans.  Working closely with the Cultural Development Network using its planning framework and principles and a set of unique measurable outcomes for evaluation, Julie has worked with a growing number of councils, with more coming on-stream in this fast-developing area in local government planning.

Local governments across Australia are increasingly focused on cultural development, with significant investments in cultural infrastructure, staff and programming.  This investment at grass roots community level is growing and, in some cases, faster than state and commonwealth financial input. Local government spend is around 27% of all national spending on cultural funding, at $1.5 billion, a huge investment in local urban, regional and rural arts and culture.

The framework we are recommending puts rigour into these plans and is focussed on outcomes. Essentially, it allows councils to understand what difference their investment in culture makes, and its impact on communities. The measurable outcomes help organisations to understand how effective they are being in achieving their objectives, and contributes to evidence-based practice, which is increasingly required by funders and decision makers.  We can apply the schema equally to large national cultural organisations and to the smallest regional and rural areas and everything in between.

Julie’s work is intended to contribute to better practice in cultural development planning, and to assist council staff to achieve better outcomes for their community.  Using the methodologies developed at CDN, Julie guides council staff through every step of the planning process, and also assists with subsequent evaluation of the plan and the application of the measurable outcomes.

Julie has recently worked with the City of Darebin, the City of Casey and Golden Plains Shire to assist in the production of new cultural development plans.

Contact:   Mobile: 0413 183 059.

“The world is not only facing economic, social or environmental challenges. Creativity, knowledge, diversity and beauty are the unavoidable bases for dialogue for peace and progress as these values are intrinsically connected to human development and freedoms”

United Cities and Local Governments policy statement on culture 2010, supporting the notion of culture as ‘the fourth pillar of sustainability’ first developed by Jon Hawkes for CDN in 2001