Creative Scotland Annual Plan 2016-17 Cont

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Creative Scotland

Annual Plan 2016-17



Who We Are and Our Role
Funding, Advocacy, Development and Influence
Our Priorities between 2014-17
Arts, Screen and Creative Industries Priorities over the next 12 Months
Being a Learning Organisation
Our Policies
Summary Budget 2016-17
Planning and Performance Management
Performing against Our Ambitions 2016-17
Delivering National Outcomes


Creative Scotland produces an Annual Plan each year, which sets out our budgets and priority areas of work for the year and how we will measure successful delivery of this work. This plan explains the work we will deliver over the course of the next year and provides us with a baseline to report against our performance each year. Our 2016-17 plan contributes to the delivery of our 10-year plan Unlocking Potential, Embracing Ambition.

2016-17 continues to be an exciting time for the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland. The breadth and vibrancy of the work produced across the country is extraordinary, contributing to education, civil society, health and well-being, community engagement, cultural identity, rural and urban development, digital and social innovation and, of course, the economy.
The central force that propels and catalyses artistic and creative endeavour is people. Scotland is a powerful and imaginative creative nation producing high quality creative work, attracting strong and growing audiences both nationally and internationally. Locally, communities enhance their lives through creative action in many different ways including music, dance, storytelling and craft, building on long-standing traditions often woven through with contemporary culture from many different influences.
However, alongside many other public sector organisations, 2016-17 sees a reduction of £1.2m in Creative Scotland’s Grant in Aid funding (UK National Lottery funding remains stable). We have managed to absorb this budget reduction through organisational efficiencies and other measures without passing on cuts to arts organisations. Budgets for 2017 onwards have not yet been set by the Scottish Government and whilst we expect to know more in the autumn, we do know that the financial environment will continue to be challenging. It is therefore incumbent on all of us to find new ways of sustaining our cultural asset across the arts, screen and creative industries. Our development role is going to become increasingly important in future, alongside our role as a distributor of funding from both the Scottish Government and the UK National Lottery.
Assertively telling the story of our cultural wealth, and celebrating the diversity of ideas and opinion inherent within it, is a vital part of achieving this. We will continue to use our digital platforms to show the many ways in which creativity matters.
Underpinning everything that we do is an ongoing determination to support a confident and ambitious independent creative sector able to inspire, connect and influence people across Scotland and the world. We firmly believe that the economic success stories across the wider creative industries have only been possible because of a strong publicly-funded arts sector. Despite this we fully acknowledge that it is not always easy for today’s artists to secure and maintain work, or for arts organisations to sustain their programmes. Later this year, in our arts strategy, we will outline how we plan to work more closely with Scotland’s artists and arts organisations to support them to better achieve their ambitions and function effectively in today’s world.
We published Creative Scotland on Screen, in October 2014, setting out our ambition to generate the conditions necessary to position the film sector at the heart of Scotland’s economic and cultural life. The strategy details the series of steps that we, and others, are taking to support and encourage a vibrant, culturally diverse and commercially competitive screen sector. We will continue to build on this work in 2016-17 acknowledging that screen production is as much an art form as an industry. It generates deep cultural impact as well as understanding and debate about Scotland and its place in today’s world as a small but very visible nation able to influence global thinking in many different ways.
We will soon publish our new creative industries approach, which explains how we will deliver a plan for the Creative Industries as one of six defined growth areas for the Scottish Government. Our ambition is for Scotland to be the most positive environment globally for innovative creative businesses of all scales. It is set against the strong successes we’ve seen in sectors such as film and screen, digital games, technology and publishing, as well as craft and textiles.
We plan to invest together with others to grow sustainable creative businesses through collaboration and partnership working; innovate for the wider economy across all areas of business (including the public sector); increase inclusivity - creating opportunity for emergent creative forms and recognising the value of local trading and place-based partnerships; and increase international profile and status, opening pathways to global marketplaces.
We will continue to work closely with Scotland’s Creative Industries Partnership (SCIP) to encourage positive collaborative working in support of the creative industries.
Our current programme of Regular Funding will come to an end in 2018. We will announce our plans for the next phase of this funding in the autumn of this year to allow for as much time for the application and assessment process as possible, as well as giving organisations time to plan for any change.
We will continue to run Open Project Funding, which was refreshed in late 2015 to take account of sector views on how it is being delivered. We will continue to review this funding route on a regular basis and carefully monitor the volume of applications, in the context of our capacity to deliver it effectively.
This year’s budgets also include a wide-ranging mix of strategic programmes funded through Targeted Funding, some of which are ring-fenced by the Scottish Government (such as the £10m Youth Music Initiative and the Expo Fund).
We recently published our first Annual Review of Performance for the financial year 2014-15. It explains our ongoing organisational development work to strengthen our support for the arts, screen and creative industries, and illustrates and accounts for the wide range of work delivered by artists, creative practitioners and organisations across Scotland supported by our funding. We will produce a review every year, and draw on the lessons learned from each to strengthen our role as an accountable public body.
The review draws on data provided by the organisations and projects that we fund and provides headline analysis which we hope will be useful to everyone working in the cultural and creative industries sectors.
Overall it offers a highly positive story of Scotland’s achievements and underlines how important the arts, screen and creative industries are to Scotland’s overall success as a nation. This becomes even more pronounced when added to work carried out by Local Authorities, the National Companies and Collections, other public bodies and the voluntary and private sectors.
I’d like to thank all staff, our Senior Leadership Team and the Board for all their hard work across the year. I continue to be impressed by the knowledge, commitment and positive energy across this highly motivated team, working at times in very challenging circumstances because of increasing pressures on the public purse.
We are committed to working in partnership with as many other people as possible across the public, private and voluntary sector to continue to unlock opportunity and resources to support Scotland’s artistic and creative talent. Alongside this drive we will continuously seek to improve the way that we operate, listen and respond to the feedback we receive from the people and organisations that we are here to support.
I hope you enjoy reading this plan. If you have any questions please let us know.
Janet Archer

Chief Executive

Who we are

Creative Scotland is the national public body which supports the development of Scotland’s arts, screen and creative industries.

We want a Scotland where everyone actively values and celebrates arts and creativity as the heartbeat for our lives and the world in which we live; which continually extends its creative imagination and ways of doing things; and where the arts, screen and creative industries are confident, connected and thriving.

We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts and creative sectors by helping others to create culture through developing great ideas and bringing them to life.

We do this through four key functions:

• Funding

• Advocacy

• Development

• Influence.

In April 2014 we published our strategic plan, Unlocking Potential – Embracing Ambition, which presents a shared vision for the arts, screen and creative industries through to 2024.

At its heart is a set of ambitions and priorities that provides a focus for our work and reflects what we want to achieve, in collaboration with other people and organisations. These priorities inform our work, funding guidelines, and decisions, as well as our own development plan over the period 2014-17. During this year we will be reviewing and setting priorities for the next three year period 2017-20

Creative Scotland recognises the distinct nature and development needs of individual art forms and specialisms. We also recognise the opportunities inherent within cross-art form working and creative collaboration across the creative system.

We support sectors in ways that are most appropriate to them, for example the way that we support screen is different to the way we might support arts or the creative industries. Alongside our 10-year plan and the annual plan we publish our strategies for each of the arts, screen and creative industries, setting out how we will work with each sector. The screen strategy is available on our website, the creative industries strategy will be published shortly, and the arts strategy is being published later this year, following the completion of individual art form sector reviews.

We also want to be able to take advantage of the opportunities for cross-sector collaboration. Our role requires us to operate intelligently at the intersection between the arts, screen and creative industries, promoting and brokering connections and encouraging and championing excellent practice as widely as possible.

This is the third Annual Plan in our current planning cycle. It sets out how we will work to achieve our ambitions and priorities for the year 1 April 2016 to 31 March 2017, as well as providing a summary of our income and spending for the year.

Not all of our work fits neatly into a 12 month period and some work started last year will continue in 2016-17 as we have adjusted our work programme over the course of the past year to take into account changing internal and external circumstances.

Our role

Creative Scotland’s remit across the arts, screen and creative industries creates the opportunities for us to:

  • Provide funding for individuals, companies and organisations

  • Act as a conduit for cross-sector connection and learning

  • Understand how the creative system contributes to society and the economy, and act in order to strengthen it

  • Position the work that we fund at the heart of creative, artistic, cultural, social and economic development, stimulating future growth in public investment of arts and culture

  • Help identify and develop income new streams for the arts, screen and creative industries, maximising opportunities from intellectual property and stimulating collaboration and partnership.

Unlocking Potential, Embracing Ambition outlines five ambitions for the arts, screen and creative industries for the period up to 2024 which underpin all of our work:

  • Excellence and experimentation across the arts, screen and creative industries is recognised and valued

  • Everyone can access and enjoy artistic and creative experiences

  • Places and quality of life are transformed through imagination, ambition and an understanding of the potential of creativity

  • Ideas are brought to life by a diverse, skilled and connected leadership and workforce

  • Scotland is a distinctive creative nation connected to the world.

Arts: We support individuals and organisations working in the arts across all areas of creative practice including dance, literature, music, theatre, visual arts and cross-disciplinary practice. We recognise that a strong arts sector is pivotal to a healthy society and creative economy. We work in partnership with Government, Local Authorities and the wider public, private and voluntary sectors to deliver this support.

In 2016-17 we will publish our arts strategy, which will provide more detail on how we will support the arts in relation to our core functions of development, funding, advocacy and influencing.

Screen: We are a driver and advocate for the screen sector in Scotland working across five key areas: film education; talent and skills development; film development and production; inward investment and co-productions; and distribution, exhibition and audiences. Our screen strategy, Creative Scotland on Screen, is motivated by a shared ambition with the sector to see growth in the number and diversity of the films we produce and the filmmakers who hold an enviable reputation for excellence. Additionally want Scotland to be a key destination for international productions and become a nation that celebrates the importance of every aspect of film culture.
Creative Industries: Our support for the creative industries is developed in collaboration with Scotland’s Creative Industries Partnership (SCIP)1. Our main role over the next 12 months will be to implement our new creative industries strategy which is focused on supporting the development of the micro-enterprises that make up the majority of the creative industries sector in Scotland. We work in partnership with other public agencies in order to achieve our goals in this area of work. Our Director of Creative Industries post is jointly funded by the Scottish Funding Council with the aim of stimulating new approaches to innovation for the sector.

Connecting Themes: As well as our ambitions there are four connecting themes that run through all aspects of our work, these are:

  • Creative Learning: Learning is key to ensuring that future generations are equipped to build on today’s successes as well as innovate on their own terms

  • Equalities, Diversity and Inclusion: Equalities are integral to everything we do and are essential in delivering quality in the arts, screen and creative industries

  • Digital: Digital technology offers exciting opportunities for creativity, society and the economy of Scotland

  • Environment: Climate change is one of the most significant challenges that face us today. We want to ensure that we work in as sustainable manner as possible and that the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland do the same.

We value:

  • Collaboration: We will listen to the needs of others and work in partnership across all aspects of public life

  • Commitment: We care deeply about the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland and are committed to their continued well-being and development

  • Trust: We will build relationships based on fairness, openness and mutual respect, sharing our knowledge and enthusiasm

  • Knowledge: We will place knowledge and expertise, across a range of art forms and specialisms, at the heart of our organisation and seek to be an organisation that continually learns, adapts and improves how we work.

Funding, Advocacy, Development and Influence

We support the arts, screen and creative industries as a funder, an advocate, a development agency and as an organisation that seeks to influence others to increase opportunity and maximise the impact our resources can offer.


We distribute funding from two primary sources, the Scottish Government (Grant in Aid) and the UK National Lottery. Our funding is the means by which we sustain a portfolio of organisations across Scotland; support the development of individuals; fund ideas and projects; and develop partnerships to address strategic need. We will do this through three funding routes:

• Regular Funding for organisations

• Open Project Funding is our main route for individuals and organisations to deliver time-limited projects

• Targeted Funding focused on delivering strategic programmes of work often in partnership with others.

Regular Funding

In October 2014 we announced a portfolio of Regularly Funded Organisations (RFOs) for the funding period April 2015 to March 2018. We will be opening application for the next round of Regular Funding later in 2016-17. Regular Funding provides stable funding to organisations in the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland.

We currently fund 1182 RFOs in total, of which 20 were receiving regular funding of any kind for the first time. The overall budget for this programme is £100m over the three-year period, representing over a third of Creative Scotland’s anticipated total budget for 2015-18. The portfolio is rich in its creative excellence, potential and ambition, and it demonstrates significant reach across Scotland and across many areas of practice. It consists of some of Scotland’s most important, innovative and exciting cultural and creative organisations, producing and presenting great work across craft, dance, film, literature, music, theatre and visual art.

The portfolio also comprises a mix of organisations of differing scale ranging from nationally and internationally established organisations like the Edinburgh International Festival, the Centre for the Moving Image, Eden Court, and Aberdeen Performing Arts, through to smaller and vitally important organisations producing excellent work from particular places, such as Ayr Gaiety Theatre, Deveron Arts in Huntly, Timespan in Helmsdale, The Stove Network in Dumfries, Wigtown Book Festival, North Lands Creative Glass and Regional Screen Scotland.

We also fund national and international touring companies including Curious Seed, Cryptic, Fire Exit, Red Note Ensemble, the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra, Indepen-dance and Vanishing Point.

Last year we developed and tested a new artistic and creative review framework and recruited a pool of peer reviewers. The artistic and creative review framework aims to facilitate a deeper and more transparent dialogue between Regularly Funded Organisations and Creative Scotland around artistic and creative quality. It will do this through a process enabling 3 perspectives on the work of the RFOs:

  • Self-review (by RFO)

  • Creative Scotland review (by Lead Officer)

  • Peer review (by a reviewer from the pool representing the sector)

Geographically, RFOs have their base in 21 of Scotland’s 32 Local Authorities and more than 80% of organisations operate beyond their home location, many on a Scotland-wide basis, reaching audiences across the country.

Open Project Funding

In October 2014 we introduced Open Project Funding, replacing a range of more complex grant schemes. This funding route provides funding grants of up to £100k (or £150k if agreed with us before application) to individuals and organisations for projects up to a maximum of two years in length, with defined start and end dates, and with a set of specific objectives.

In the year 1st April 2015 to 31st March 2016 we offered 5673 awards through the Open Project Fund, to the value of £11.7m

We want to encourage applicants to generate great ideas across a broad spectrum of activity, and Open Project Funding supports:

• Projects that develop skills or artistic and creative practice

• Projects that create something new and of high quality

• Projects which either present work to audiences, or which try to develop and reach new audiences (including those which are hard to reach)

• Projects which encourage more people to get involved in artistic and creative activity.

In late 2015 we reviewed the funding guidance and application material for Open Project Funding and made adjustments to improve the process and provide further clarity. We continually listen to feedback and aim to improve our application material and guidance regularly. This year we will be launching a simplified process for applications under £5k.

Targeted Funding

We continue to provide Targeted Funding which addresses specific activities and development needs in a sector, specialism, or geographic area. Examples of Targeted Funds are the Youth Music Initiative, which Creative Scotland runs on behalf of the Scottish Government, and the Place Partnership programme to help strengthen creative development in a local area.

We will continue to run our Screen Funding Programme as part of our Targeted Funding. This represents a core component of our work, providing specialist strategic and editorial advice to producers when initiating and developing projects, assisting them package their projects for finance and production, and advising on distribution and exhibition.

There are two main funds within the programme: 

  • Film Funding, which is focused on live-action and animated feature films, feature documentaries, animated and live action drama television series, has an allocation of £4.2m for the period 2016-17. It funds Markets and Festivals Attendance; Single Project Development Funding; Slate Development Funding; Production Funding; Distribution and Exhibition Funding; and the Scottish Film Talent Network

  • The Production Growth Fund, which has an allocation of £1m for the period 2016-17 and is available to qualifying productions in the form of a non-recoupable grant. Its purpose is to help grow the screen production sector, create employment opportunities for Scottish-based crew, encourage the use of Scottish-based production facilities companies and deliver a direct and significant economic benefit to Scotland.

Our Targeted Funds will also address specific activities and development needs including leadership within minority ethnic communities and the strategic developments in Creative Learning. In 2016-17 we will continue to support events that profile Scotland’s rich creative talent and promote public engagement with arts and culture. These include events such as Scotland + Venice, WOMEX and support for communities through Awards for All. In all cases, we aim to provide the type of funding that best meets the needs of artists, creative individuals, organisations and creative businesses.

Creative Scotland is committed to fair pay for artists. We expect funding applications to reference relevant industry standards on rates of remuneration. We encourage everyone who is in a position to generate better levels of remuneration to do so, in order to ensure that Scotland is a country where artists and creative people can live and work successfully.

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