Which city is best for culture? New research crunches the numbers
Mark Brown, The Guardian
Study finds that Paris has most cinemas, London most museums, Tokyo most bookshops and New York most theatres
Paris has three times the number of cinemas as London, twice as many public libraries, far more bookshops, theatres and music venues while London has more museums, restaurants, night clubs and green spaces.
The figures emerge from the World Cities Culture Report 2012 published on Wednesday - an international survey which is the biggest of its kind examining in number crunching detail the cultural offerings of 12 cities, although the authors stress that it is not an attempt to rank them.
One of the report's central points is that world cities are as important in terms of culture as they are in finance or trade. The report says: "Culture in all its diverse forms is central to what makes a city appealing to educated people and hence to the businesses which seek to employ them."
It was commissioned by the mayor of London, Boris Johnson, and is being published to coincide with a cultural summit in London in which representatives of the 12 cities - London, Berlin, Istanbul, Johannesburg, Mumbai, New York, Paris, Sao Paulo, Shanghai, Singapore, Sydney and Tokyo - will gather to discuss common aims.
Johnson said: "World cities are international hubs for commerce and trade, but as this groundbreaking report makes clear, they are powerhouses for culture too – in London the creative industries alone contribute £19bn to our economy and employ 386,000 people. In coming together as city leaders and policymakers we want to harness the full potential of culture, which makes our cities exciting and desirable places to live in and visit, but also makes a massive contribution to wider social and economic goals."
The report says the contribution of the arts and creative industries is fundamental to a city's health.
Every $1 saved in arts funding will cost the city $17: Cultural advisor says
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford’s cultural adviser Jeff Melanson says eliminating or reducing funding to the arts would be a big mistake, and plans to deliver that message to the city’s executive committee Thursday.
“It would be a misdirection to reduce those (grants),’’ Melanson, executive director of the National Ballet School, said in an interview Wednesday.
The city’s executive committee is set to pore over a lengthy KPMG report that presents “options’’ to the city to trim spending. The city faces a whopping shortfall in its 2012 budget of up to $774 million.
Arts and cultural groups in the city receive about $19 million from the city’s Community Partnership Investment Program (CPIP), according to the KPMG report. The report suggests the city would see a “high level’’ of savings eliminating or reducing CPIP.
But the consulting report also notes that groups receiving funding from CPIP could see their programs “compromised.’’
Other services such as libraries, policing and snow removal are also facing potential cuts, and well over 150 individuals and groups have signed up to speak at Thursday’s meeting to defend those services.
To read the full article: http://www.thestar.com/news/article/1031198--every-1-saved-in-arts-funding-will-cost-the-city-17-cultural-advisor-says#.TjGopDfENss
To read the full report from the Civic Action Alliance, either in its entirety or by section, please see:
World Health Organization’s guide to Global Age-Friendly Cities
Are you looking for an excellent resource to help improve your city for seniors? Look no further than the World Health Organization (WHO). They have created a comprehensive guide that covers aging trends, needs of the elderly and how cities can, and should, adapt to meet those needs. A total of 35 cities from all continents participated in the creation of the guide, including Canada’s own Halifax, Portage La Prairie, Saanich and Sherbrooke.
Topic areas that are covered include transportation, housing, social participation, respect and social inclusion, civic participation and employment, communication and information, community support and health services, and outdoor spaces and buildings.
From the introduction:
“Population ageing and urbanization are two global trends that together comprise major forces shaping the 21st century. At the same time as cities are growing, their share of residents aged 60 years and more is increasing. Older people are a resource for their families, communities and economies in supportive and enabling living environments. WHO regards active ageing as a lifelong process shaped by several factors that, alone and acting together, favour health, participation and security in older adult life. Informed by WHO’s approach to active ageing, the purpose of this Guide is to engage cities to become more age-friendly so as to tap the potential that older people represent for humanity.
“An age-friendly city encourages active ageing by optimizing opportunities for health, participation and security in order to enhance quality of life as people age. In practical terms, an age-friendly city adapts its structures and services to be accessible to and inclusive of older people with varying needs and capacities.”
To download the guide, please visit http://www.who.int/ageing/publications/Global_age_friendly_cities_Guide_English.pdf
Age-Friendly Communities Initiative
The Government of Canada is proud to be a key partner in the Age-Friendly Communities Initiative. The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) leads this initiative with other federal, provincial, territorial and non-government partners.
The Age-Friendly Communities project seeks to engage older Canadians and their communities in making their communities better, healthier and safer places for seniors to live and thrive. In an age-friendly community, policies, services and structures related to the physical and social environment are designed to support and enable older people to "age actively" – that is, to live in security, enjoy good health and continue to participate fully in society. Public and commercial settings and services are made accessible to accommodate varying levels of ability. For example, public and private transportation is accessible, streets and buildings are hazard-free, and there are opportunities for seniors to participate in civic, cultural, educational and voluntary activities.
For more information, please see http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/sh-sa/ifa-fiv/2008/initiative-eng.php
Another excellent resource on the same topic can be found at the Age Friendly Communities website at http://afc.uwaterloo.ca/
Considerations in building cities for seniors
From Saturday's Globe and Mail
Published Friday, Jan. 07, 2011 9:00PM EST
Is 30 seconds enough time to cross the street? Not if you’re over the age of 65.
“Pedestrian crossings are made for Olympic runners,” one elderly Canadian responded in a survey conducted by the World Health Organization.
In 2006, the federal government endorsed the WHO’s Age-friendly Cities initiative, which encourages communities to identify changes that will make urban life easier and more pleasurable for an aging population.
Mapping Artists and Cultural Workers in Canada’s Large Cities
Reveals highly artistic neighbourhoods in Canada’s largest cities
This study, prepared for the City of Vancouver, the City of Calgary, the City of Toronto, the City of Ottawa and the Ville de Montréal, shows that, collectively, the 53,500 artists in these five large cities represent 38% of all artists in Canada, a proportion that is much higher than the five cities’ share of the overall Canadian labour force (21%).
The report provides an analysis of artists residing in various postal regions – “neighbourhoods” – in Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver in 2006. The report provides lists of the ten neighbourhoods with the highest concentration of artists in each city. Nearly 22,000 artists live in the 50 neighbourhoods in the five cities’ top ten lists. This represents 41% of the artists in the five cities and 16% of all artists in Canada.