Why... does the cultural sector not have better representation from the Black community in London’s funded arts leadership?

Despite numerous strategies and policies aimed at increasing diversity and inclusion leadership in the sector has not changed. Drucker is widely cited for the quote “culture eats strategy for breakfast.” He suggested that one can have all the “strategy” they want in place, but the “culture,” defined… as a group’s behaviours and beliefs, must align with the strategy in order for the strategy to succeed. If not, a strategy is likely to fail. This failure is deeply pronounced in the UK and in the publicly funded arts sector here.

Foucault (1979, 1990 as in Ahonen et al., 2013) interrogated diversity using not social inequalities, but power. He suggested that power enables those with power to maintain structures and those seen as different to receive categorisation as such.

The historic and continued lack of BBW [Black British workforce] representation in the “magic three” positions within the top ten NPOs signifies a deeper disconnect between representation and culture.

Suzanne Alleyne

Cultural Thinker

Suzanne  Alleyne is a visiting research associate and guest lecturer at King’s College London, UK, a Achates Philanthropy Prize Ambassador, a DEMOS Fellow 2020 Churchill Fellow, and an Inaugural Arts Council England Change Maker.

Suzanne is a London based Cultural Thinker – a title she coined to describe her work as a strategist, researcher, and conversational artist. Using these mediums, she works at the intersection of academic research, business, art and culture.

Photos: Images for use from author, or under creative commons and / or public domain. 

Arts Management, Cultural Policy, & the African Diaspora

Art Management, Cultural Policy, & the African Diaspora