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Arts & Culture and Regeneration - Business Improvement Districts: Where the cultural can drive the economic

Date uploaded: April 8, 2013

Arts & Culture and Regeneration - Business Improvement Districts: Where the cultural can drive the economic

Caroline Davis

Commissioned and published by ixia, the public art think tank

Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) offer an interesting back drop for artists and policy makers to understand how the business community are involved in co-financing and commissioning new work. This essay looks at the broad background and thoughts on culture-led regeneration (including theories of Charles Landry and Richard Florida) in our cities. These theories are analysed in the context of UK BIDs arts and cultural activity, whose programmes were assessed in a survey in 2012. The essay notes how festivals and outdoor work (including public realm, sculpture and lighting) have become an important aspect in the delivery of BIDs who can use these activities to show economic benefit to their members through regeneration and profiling activity. Many BIDs are planning to continue to use arts and culture activity as part of their future business plans.

About the author:
Caroline Davis is Strategic Projects Manager at Birmingham Hippodrome. Working with the Birmingham business community on securing on the ‘yes’ vote for Southside BID in 2009, whilst working for Birmingham City Council’s City Centre Management department, she has taken a keen interest in this policy area since 2008. Subsequently, she is now an observer of Southside Business District’s board where the Birmingham Hippodrome theatre is resident and is a contributor to the BID’s Gateways subgroup. In 2012 Caroline completed her Master’s degree in Regeneration at Staffordshire Universities Creative Communities department. Taking special research interest in outdoor arts, community arts and the impact BIDs can have, this work has evolved out of that research period.

Click here to download the essay.(724 KB)