This article draws on the concept of spatialisation to better understand the development of a digital games industry on the periphery of mainland Europe, on the island of Ireland. Positioning digital games within the cultural and creative industries, we explore how global networks of production in this industry get territorialized, negotiated and shaped by local factors. Drawing upon an industry-wide survey in Ireland we found that employment has grown by 400% in the last decade but that this rate of employment growth and its concentration in large urban areas masks significant ruptures and shifts which more detailed spatial, occupational and social analysis reveals: in particular, how the state, multinational game companies, and physical and human capital interact to shape an industry which is strong in middleware, localisation and support but weak in content development. An understanding of global digital games production networks and of occupational patterns in this industry is, we believe, crucial for national and European cultural policies for the digital games industry and for the cultural and creative industries more generally.
The changing economic and technological conditions often referred to as ‘globalization’ have had a deep impact on the very nature of the state, and thus on the aims, objectives and implementation of cultural policy, including film policy. In this paper, I discuss the main changes in film policy there have been in Mexico, comparing the time when the welfare state regarded cinema as crucial to the national identity, and actively supported the national cinema at the production, distribution and exhibition levels (about 1920-1980), and the recent onset of neoliberal policies, during which the industry was privatized and globalized. I argue the result has been a transformation of the film production, from the properly ‘national’ cinema it was during the welfare state—that is, having a role in nation building, democratization processes and being an important part of the public sphere—into a kind of genre, catering for a very small niche audience both domestically and internationally. However, exhibition and digital distribution have been strengthened, perhaps pointing towards a more meaningful post-national cinema.
A growing attention to cultural participation of people with disabilities has been propelled by the entry into force of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Being strictly connected to the implementation of the CRPD, the focus on cultural participation of people with disabilities has accrued outside the remit of national cultural policy. This article carries out a thematic analysis of national disability strategies across 27 Member States of the European Union plus the UK and explores the extent to which these strategies can be considered rights-based cultural policy tools. It identifies four themes recurring across those strategies: enhancing accessibility of cultural heritage, cultural institutions and cultural content; supporting persons with disabilities as creators of culture; awareness-raising about cultural participation of persons with disabilities; and protecting disability identity and culture. It then discusses the measures linked to these themes that national disability strategies adopt. On the whole, this article argues that national disability strategies can be, to varying degrees, considered cultural policy tools, and display significant rights-based elements. It concludes with reflections on the broader implications of those findings for cultural policy.
This article examines the brief tenure of the writer Sean O’Faoláin as Director of the Arts Council of Ireland. The article notes the generational similarities and shared outlook between O’Faoláin and André Malraux, the Minister of Culture for France from 1959 to 1969. However, O’Faoláin’s tenure in office was shorter, less successful, and marked by a bitter dispute with the administration and artists of the Royal Hibernian Academy. This dispute serves as a useful case study for examining competing conceptions of national culture, the purpose of cultural policy, and the role of the cultural elite as arbiters of taste.