Question 17: Please use this section to provide any other comments that you wish to share about the strategy.
Question 17 invited respondents to share any further comments on the draft strategy. Respondents sometimes summarised the points that they had raised at earlier questions or made points that have already been covered in the analysis presented above. The focus of the analysis at Question 17 is on issues that have not been covered elsewhere.
Layout, design and structure of the strategy
A number of respondents raised issues about the draft strategy document itself, including that, although necessarily wide ranging, it is too long and repetitive in places. It was also suggested to be complex and difficult to understand at times, with an associated concern that the appearance and wording may itself be a barrier. Careful consideration as to how the draft strategy can be owned and used by as wide a constituency of stakeholders as possible was suggested.
The importance of inclusive visual design within the finished document was highlighted. Other comments included that:
- graphics and images should be used as much as possible.
- the photography used in the document needs to represent cultural heritage, including museums. Also, there are currently two pictures of ceilidhs on successive pages and one of these should be replaced. A suggestion was to include a photo of Mela or the Chinese New Year.
- the 'Women of the Hill' image on the cover is an amazing photograph but might be off-putting to some sections of the community as it could be perceived as promoting a narrow view of culture as 'high-brow art'. There should be more imagery that speaks to the everyday.
Finally, in terms of the document itself, it was suggested that a summary version with infographics would provide a vital synopsis of the document's context, to provide a quick way-in for community cultural participants and partners outside the cultural sector.
As at previous questions, there were suggestions about other groups or sectors that should be covered in the draft strategy. In particular, the value of playwrights and playwriting in Scotland was highlighted, including that:
The work of playwrights' cuts across the vision and aims of the draft Strategy – Transforming, Empowering and Sustaining. For example, playwrights work consistently in local communities and environments such as schools, universities, for youth, elderly and community organisations and in prisons.
(Representative or umbrella group representative)
There was an associated suggestion that playwriting in Scotland should become recognised and supported as a strategic priority, national asset or protected sector.
Other sectors or groups that respondents wished to see covered in the draft strategy included:
- designer makers and the Made in Scotland programme which is of cultural significance.
- civic design as a cultural activity and the contribution that good civic design and effective management of cultural resources makes to well-being.
- listed buildings or conservation areas and the contribution they make to culture in Scotland.
- photography, and in particular the use made by individuals with smart phones. It was suggested that photography is the art form of choice of the 21st century and that Government organisations need to address ways in which ideas and concepts can also be expressed through images with associated text, rather than all text and some imagery.
- the broadcast media need to figure more explicitly as they remain part of the general cultural dynamic in some form for most people in Scotland.
- the media, beyond television viewing, such as those using social media and community radio, newspapers or newsletters.
- university museums, as centres of enterprise and experimentation and as making research visible and supporting public understanding of research.
It was also suggested that the draft strategy can challenge the culture around dying, death and bereavement, creating public openness, awareness and acceptance. An opportunity to start to remove some of the fear that surrounds death was highlighted, along with opportunity to change Scottish culture and transform people's lives and deaths.
Other comments at Question 17 included that:
- the draft strategy should refer to UNESCO's 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
- There should be specific mention of the National Creative Learning Network.
Email: Donna Stewart