Arts Leaders Program

Program Overview

The Arts Leaders Program brings together leaders from across the country, artforms and career levels to inspire and enhance arts leadership in Australia. The Arts Leaders Program will enhance your capacity as a leader, develop networks and provide the platform for you to be the best leader you can be.

Participants will engage with some of the most dynamic and influential leaders in Australia, exploring the issues and challenges that face the arts today. The Program will explore new ways of working including: how organisations are run; how we create partnerships; engage with audiences, communities and stakeholders. Participants will commit to a 15 month-long journey of leadership activities including three intensive residentials, workshops and an online course, which stretch them intellectually and personally.

The aim of the program is to build the capabilities of strong leaders to deliver a resilient, sustainable and vibrant arts sector. 

Who is the Program for?

The program is designed for arts leaders in various stages in their careers. The program will cater for emerging, mid-career and established leaders. This mixed cohort approach will maximise the learning experience through peer learning and custom components suited to various levels of experience.

Program Structure

The Arts Leaders Program will run over a 15 month period and will be offered twice in the next three years. There will be an intake in 2016 and 2017. The 2017 intake will open for submission early 2017.

The 2016 Arts Leaders Program includes:

  • Three intensive residentials (24-27 October 2016; March 2017; January 2018).
  • Invitations to ‘deep-dive’ workshops throughout the program including topics such Governance and Innovation.
  • Arts and Culture Strategy online course, completed on-demand over 5 weeks.
  • Access to the Australia Council Leadership Mentoring and Secondments program when it suits you.
  • Alumni from the first group will link with alumni from the second group at the beginning of the second program, therefore forming a rolling, yet intimate alumni.

Program Outcomes

Participants in the program will have:

  • Enhanced skills, capabilities and knowledge to survive, adapt and thrive.
  • Richer insight into what makes a great leader.
  • Stronger capability to lead an evolving arts sector.
  • Strong networks and relationships across the sector and across the country.

Program Dates

The Expression of Interests for the 2016 intake will be midnight on 7 June 2016. The residential dates and locations for the 2016 intake will be announced in May 2016 prior to the closing date. Each residential will run over 3-4 days and generally be over weekends. They will take place during the following months:

  • Residential 1 – 24-27 October 2016
  • Residential 2 – March 2017
  • Residential 3 – January 2018
  • The 2017 intake dates will be announced later this year.

Program Fees

Program fee: $900+GST ($300 x 3) includes accommodation, catering and program resources at three residentials.

Scholarships and fee discounts: No applicant is discouraged from applying due to their financial situation. Applicants are able to apply to be considered for a fee discount. Selected scholarships may also be available. Please contact us for more information.

Travel: Participants are expected to pay their travel expenses, if required. Travel assistance is available for individuals from remote areas and from Western Australia travelling to the east coast. Please contact us for more information.

Selection Criteria

Leaders will be assessed proportionately to their experience level. Leaders will be selected using the following criteria:

  1. Readiness – The individual can demonstrate how the program will benefit their leadership development and dedicate the necessary time to fully participate in the program.
  2. Collaborative learner – Ability to learn in a group and collectively work on solving problems; the individual will have demonstrated willingness to share their own resources and skills with the group.
  3. Level of commitment and engagement – The individual demonstrates a passion and commitment to the cultural sector; demonstrates an openness to new ideas and an approachable style.
  4. Leadership ability and potential – The individual displays behaviours which indicate they have potential to grow in their leadership, whether they are emerging, mid-career or established. These behaviours may include strategic thinking skills; leadership promise; commitment to personal development; self-mastery and integrity.

Expression of Interest

Entry to the program is competitive. For each intake, a balanced mix of backgrounds, artforms, occupations, experience and gender will be selected by the panel. Applications will be assessed by the selection panel and short listed applicants will be contacted for an interview. All applicants will be advised of the outcome of their application once the selection process has been completed.

Expression of Interests for the 2016 intake have closed.

Support Material

You must submit either a short CV (1-2 pages) or your LinkedIn profile. You will be required to submit a URL for either of these. Your resume should be uploaded online and an URL provided as support material. To find out how to get your CV online click here.

Selection Process

Industry advisors will rate Expressions of Interest according to the selection criteria above and give advice and feedback to Australia Council staff. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to attend an interview prior to the Australia Council selecting the final group. You will be informed of the outcome of the Expression of Interest process in July 2016. 

FAQs for the Australia Council Leadership Program can be accessed here.

Past Arts Leaders Programs:

Dubbo Arts Leadership Exchange 

Future Leaders Program

Governance Program

Mentoring Program

Frequently Asked Questions 

Partnerships and Scholarships

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