Introduction

This inaugural edition of the UNESCO Observatory, Faculty ABP, UM refereed e-journal offers a variety of perspectives on the term “multi-disciplinary”, particularly in relation to the arts.

The arts often represent cultures as social organisms. In the context of the UNESCO Observatory and this refereed e-journal, the arts are strengthened and have greater meaning when orchestrated in harmony with a social voice, classical refinements, heritage values and contemporary re-creations.

The advent of the Industrialised and Computer Age has characterised by-products – globalisation, poverty, global warming, mental illness and neurosis, a devitalised proletariat and under-valued intelligentsia. The quest for materialism has often been at the expense of the spiritual and finer values of life. This refereed e-journal contrasts aspects of modern life, using the arts, culture and education as the lever.

Diverse themes from a wide variety of contributors and contrasting backgrounds constitute our first volume of twelve essays. Jose Buitrago, Professor of Environmental Design, Athens, Greece discusses the impact of heritage tourism on historic preservation and economic development in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Stuart Cunningham, Professor and Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation at Queensland University of Technology, Australia, presents a short insightful paper illuminating his experience in cultural and communication policy in relation to economic, legal and other specialist knowledge. Kate Ferguson, student from Curtin University of Technology, Western Australia writes of the multi-faceted experiences in the Global Studio where an architectural and urban design team of students and staff went to Zeyrek, Istanbul, Turkey with the aim to improve the lives of the people through their project.

Jaime Hernandez Garcia, from the School of Architecture and Design, University of Javeriana, Bogota, Columbia presents a paper demonstrating how community visions and cooperative efforts are more successful in shaping low income settlements in metropolitan Bogota. By contrast, Derham Groves, senior lecturer from the Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning at The University of Melbourne, Australia discusses one of Australia’s most popular and accessible artists, Pro Hart. Global advocacy for arts education is discussed in the essay by Ashfaq Ishaq, Executive Director of the Child Art Foundation, Washington DC, USA. He writes of its efforts achieving important social objectives through the integration of arts education with science, sport and technology. Margaret Kelaher, senior lecturer from the Centre for Health Policy, Programs and Economics at the University of Melbourne has written with Naomi Berman and the partnering research team, methodological approaches evaluating Community Arts for mental health.

John Langmore’s essay discusses the politics and negotiating factors in mobilizing support for development. He is the former Director of the United Nations Division for Social Policy and Development in New York and then Representative of the International Labour Organization to the United Nations. Elizabetta Lazzaro from the European Commission and the Economics Department, University of Padua, Italy presents her research on reforms in music education in Belgium and their impact on non-professional and professional music education. Maggie McCormick, artist and PHD candidate in the Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning at the University of Melbourne presents cross-cultural, cross disciplinary perspectives and reflections on gender.

Jason Potts, from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation at QUT, Queensland Australia, explores through his paper an evolutionary approach to the economics of the arts. Globalisation and its impact on the arts and culture of the Balkans is brought to light through the reflective analysis of Boris Previsic’s essay on cultural impacts in the Balkans.

Obviously the notion of the arts and culture in tandem with areas of multi-disciplinary themes and concerns, social, architectural, urban, environmental, economic, educational, health and community or the stand-alone ‘arts for arts sake’ approach, becomes evident through these essays. This first e-journal fulfils the mission of the UNESCO Observatory, to bring people together with shared interests in the arts and encourage activities that cross disciplinary divisions, drawing on the combined expertise of national and internationally recognised researchers.

Systematising significant and diverse experiences will provide evidence for the use of the arts across a multi-disciplinary education and promote the exchange of experiences internationally. The next five issues of this e-journal will be guest edited by eminent scholars with their chosen theme under the auspice of the UNESCO Observatory. These will appear bi-annually. Scholars, artists and students are welcomed to submit essays for review by an expert team of academics.

I would most sincerely like to thank the contributing authors; the associate editor, Naomi Berman; the designer, Vrushti Mawani; the copy editor, Irene Korsten; Tony Zara the manager of web and multi-media development and the expert reviewers for their fine contributions. The e-journal has been graciously supported by the Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning at The University of Melbourne, Australia.

OLD SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO, US: A CASE STUDY OF HERITAGE TOURISM AS A MECHANISM TO PROMOTE HISTORIC PRESERVATION & ECONOMICAL DEVELOPMENT

Heritage tourism became a successful strategy to promote the USA Commonwealth of Puerto Rico as a unique tropical destination in the Caribbean. Driven by the desire to capitalize in the heritage tourism market, both private and public sectors joined efforts to initiate the restoration of the 16th century district of Old San Juan.

Author: Professor José R Buitrago ; Assistant Professor, College Of Environment and Design School of Environmental Design, Athens

Download article – Heritage Tourism

POLITICAL ECONOMY AND CREATIVE INDUSTRIES POLICY (PRESENTATION TO THE INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR MEDIA AND COMMUNICATION RESEARCH, 2006) 

A critical, interdisciplinary approach to policy analysis and policy advocacy where the economic, the legal and other dimensions of specialist knowledge are brought together withttp://www.henri-matisse.net/paintings/ax.jpgh cultural and communication policy.

Author: Professor Stuart Cunningham ; Director, Arc Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation, Queensland University of Technology

Download article – Creative Insustries

GLOBAL STUDİOİN ZEYREK: A MULTİDİSCİPLİNARY, İNTERNATİONAL APPROACH TO LEARNİNG THROUGH DEVELOPİNG AND DOCUMENTİNG DİVERSE RESPONSES TO POVERTY 

The Global Studio brings together students, professionals and academics from across the world to learn, teach, and enact participatory process in poor communities. This paper examines a project for the Turkish Zeyrek community.

Author: Kate Ferguson, Curtin University of Technology

Global Studio

 LOCAL INITIATIVE IN LOW INCOME SETTLEMENTS IN BOGOTA, COLUMBIA 

Community initiative urban, architectonic and/or environmental projects can be better than those produced by public or private plans in low-income settlements of Bogota, Columbia.

Author: Jaime Hernández García, Researcher and Lecturer, School of Architecture and Design, University of La Javeriana, Bogotá, Colombia

Local Initiatives

ALMOST ANYTHING GOES: THE CANVASES OF PRO HART 

Pro Hart (1928-2006) is one of Australia’s most famous artists. To a large extent this is because his paintings of the Australian outback were reproduced on a wide range of mass-produced items, such as air conditioners, beer cans, kitchenware, and telephone cards, and also because he appeared in a very popular carpet commercial on television. 

Author: Derham Groves ; Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning, University of Melbourne.

Pro Hart

PROSPERITY AND PEACE THROUGH ART 

Since its founding in 1997, the International Child Art Foundation (ICAF) has made a unique contribution to global advocacy for arts education and integrating the arts with science, sport and technology. 

Author: Ashfaq Ishaq ; Executive Director, International Child Art Foundation, Washington DC, USA

Download Article – Prosperity Peace

METHODOLOGICAL APPROACHES TO EVALUATING THE IMPACT OF COMMUNITY ARTS ON HEALTH 

There is increasing interest in examining the effects of arts programmes on health. However, despite evidence of best practice in arts programme delivery there has been little emphasis on evaluation. This paper outlines a process for developing evaluation methodologies in arts and health.

Authors: Dr Margaret Kelaher (Corresponding Author) and David Dunt, Centre for Health Policy, Programs and Economics; School of Population Health, Faculty Of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, University of Melbourne

Download Article – Evaluating Community Arts

THE POLITICAL ECONOMY OF ADDITIONAL DEVELOPMENT FINANCE 

The article discusses the political obstacles and supports for additional finance for development. It emphasizes the need for effective negotiating alliances among developing country governments that will draw support from other countries and organizations

Author: John Langmore ; Professorial Fellow, Department of Political Science, University of Melbourne

Download Article – Political Economic Development

LOCAL INITIATIVE IN LOW INCOME SETTLEMENTS IN BOGOTA, COLUMBIA

Community initiative urban, architectonic and/or environmental projects can be better than those produced by public or private plans in low-income settlements of Bogota, Columbia.

Author: Jaime Hernández García, Researcher and Lecturer, School of Architecture and Design, University of La Javeriana, Bogotá, Colombia

Download Article – Music Education

SUITCASES, MAPS, WOLVES AND GLASS WALLS: MAPPING URBAN CONSCIOUSNESS AND REFLECTING ON GENDER ASYMMETRY IN CONTEMPORARY ART 

The Transient City – a research project mapping urban consciousness through contemporary art, gender and the metaphors of suitcases, maps, wolves and glass walls.

Author: Maggie Mccormick; Phd Candidate, Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning,  University of Melbourne

Download article – Suitcases, Maps, Wolves and Glass Walls

ART & INNOVATION: AN EVOLUTIONARY ECONOMIC VIEW OF THE CREATIVE INDUSTRIES 

An exploration of the economic and cultural contribution of the arts and its effect on economic growth and evolution. The crucial connection is supplied by an innovation systems perspective on the creative industries.

Author: Jason Potts; Arc Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation, Queensland University of Technology, School of Economics, University of Queensland

Download article – Art Innovation

CULTURAL IMPACTS FROM AND ON MARGINALISED REGIONS: THE BALKANS 

Why the Balkans region, so rich and powerful in movies and literature, is not only economically marginalised by globalisation, but also culturally the most stigmatised in Europe.

Author: Boris Presivic

Download article – Cultural Impacts