Arts Council England made a clear commitment to increase funding to Black-led organisations. Its new levelling up priority puts that commitment at risk. In this article, I question how it plans to square the circle and deliver both. Levelling up must not lead to levelling down on diversity.
Racial inequality in arts funding will not be resolved by grants alone. A BAME-led investment fund would be a pragmatic and transformative solution.
Dear Darren / Sir Nicholas, Arts Council England (ACE) has tried everything it can think of to improve diversity. The effort has been immense (this should be acknowledged) but the results, in your own words, have been ‘disappointing’. Your recent calls for the Arts Council to do better on racial inequality going forward are welcome. …
To future-proof the creative sector we must root out systemic funding bias against BAME organisations starting with an equitable sharing of the £1.57 billion bailout package.