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National identity and the future of branding the arts

Fillis, I, Rentschler, R and Lee, B (2022) National identity and the future of branding the arts. Futures, 145. ISSN 0016-3287

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Learning from the past is used to assist agencies to move towards a desired future in order to build better practices. We assess 48 years of annual reports of the Australia Council for the Arts, the government’s arts funding and advisory agency, in order to understand how Australian national identity has been crafted through branding the arts, identifying opportunities for improved future branding. We find that the agency’s branding reflects cultural, consumer and corporate perspectives with their endeavour to develop a ‘market’ for the arts. Although the agency succeeded in creating internationally recognised arts as a brand they failed to develop nuanced understanding of the brand reflecting community values, norms and cultural practices. Branding could be a mediator across the cultural divide bridging polarisations in society resulting from a colonial past, thus influencing future branding practices. Future approaches need to take account of broader social, cultural, and theoretical concerns of branding the arts in postcolonial Australia. The study makes recommendations for the agency to move away from the brand-consumer dyad to brand understanding which reflects critical perspectives. It recommends a balanced centricity perspective for future branding of the arts, taking account of complex framing of national identity in Australia.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: brand; government agency; longitudinal content analysis; desired futures; General Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce > HF5001 Business > HF5410 Marketing. Distribution of Products
N Fine Arts > NX Arts in general
Divisions: Doctoral Management Studies (from Sep 19)
Publisher: Elsevier
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 08 Dec 2022 12:22
Last Modified: 22 Dec 2022 11:40
DOI or ID number: 10.1016/j.futures.2022.103078
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/18347
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