From social mobility to social justice

Reflections on Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries 2020-2022

3,007 Words

Professor Dave O'Brien

Written by Professor Dave O’Brien, this short paper was created alongside the launch of our new Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries Toolkit, (Team) Work in Practice.

The paper reflects on the changing context for the Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries (WJCB) programme 2020-22. In doing so, it foregrounds the programme’s shift of focus from individual mobility into artistic and cultural jobs to organisational and structural transformations. This shift reflects learning from previous iterations of WJCB, and more general changes in cultural policy and cultural practice in the UK.

Dave O’Brien is Professor of Cultural and Creative Industries at the University of Sheffield. He is co-investigator at the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre (AHRC PEC). He has published extensively on inequality in the cultural sector, including his latest book Culture Is Bad for You, which is co-authored by Dr Mark Taylor and Dr Orian Brook. He has also worked as an academic policy advisor to the House of Commons DCMS Select Committee and the House of Lords Communications Committee. With Natalie Wreyford and Tamsyn Dent, he is the co-author of the Creative Majority report on what works to support diversity in the creative industries, published by the All Party Parliamentary Group for Creative Diversity.