“Adapting to an Uncertain Economic Climate” – Audio of a plenary session at a Wallace Foundation Conference, “Engaging Audiences,” April 1-3, 2009, Philadelphia.
 
Panelists:
Michael Kaiser, President, Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
Clara Miller, President & CEO, Nonprofit Finance Fund

Moderator:

M. Christine DeVita, President, The Wallace Foundation

How can arts organizations weather the current economic downturn and continue to serve people well? In a plenary panel, “Adapting to an Uncertain Economic Climate,” Wallace Foundation President Chris DeVita provides an overview of the economic challenges facing arts organizations and funders. Clara Miller, head of the Nonprofit Finance Fund, shares new research on how nonprofits, including arts groups, are coping with the economic climate and provide examples of creative adaptation. Michael Kaiser, president of the Kennedy Center, discusses how arts organizations, including his, can adapt to the new reality while keeping a long-term view. 

 

Entire Session (63 minutes)

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Audio comments by Chris DeVita on the economic climate for the arts (5 minutes),

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Audio comments by Michael Kaiser on the need to maintain program quality in tough times (3 minutes)

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Audio comments by Kaiser and Clara Miller on the benefits and pitfalls of arts mergers (3 minutes)

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The Way We’ll Be: The Zogby Report on the Transformation of the American Dream (33 minutes)

In a separate plenary address at the gathering, pollster John Zogby discusses changed attitudes of US citizens toward the American Dream and sketches a picture of what’s to come and posits that arts institutions could benefit from a turn away from consumerism and a desire for what he terms “affordable pleasures” and authentic experiences.

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