"Cultural Infrastructures and Spaces: Sustainability and Challenges for the Future"
Cultural infrastructures today are not only meeting their responsibilities in a more or less routine way, suffering the consequences of a deep economic crisis, but they are also facing challenges that would have been there regardless of the intensity of the crisis. These are challenges involved or connected to a great syndrome of ambivalence, imprecision and chaos that have descended upon knowledge, and that have in recent times revived the long-standing discussion on the social function of culture and hence, on the pertinence of public intervention in funding cultural activities, with a new argument: culture not only deserves public support for its own merits as a factor to stimulate creativity, as a means of artistic expression or the development of a collective identity, but it may be used as an instrumental variable to achieve goals connected to economic development policies and urban revitalization.
More and more frequently cultural infrastructures are becoming a part of broader strategies for economic development, where culture is considered to be a factor influencing the location of business projects and as an incentive for activities related to cultural or business tourism, or with the tertiary sector in general.
Hence, culture is bestowed an important role as an instrument to provide a given image with external projection.
Projects based on such a concept assume that there is a direct relationship between the potential of cultural action in a given region and its degree of economic development, not only because culture is in itself an economic activity that generates employment and tax revenues, as well as purchasing goods and services, but also because it is an essential factor to create the necessary conditions in order to bring about balanced, sustainable economic development.
The I International Forum of Spaces for Culture, the title of which is Cultural Infrastructures and Spaces: Sustainability and Challenges for the Future, assembles a series of professionals and representatives of national and international institutions that will prove that culture may be considered to be a variable for development, a useful, instrumental variable to achieve goals that go beyond those of culture for the sake of culture.