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The Role of Arts and Culture in Liveability

In 2007 the Victoria Competition and Efficiency Commission undertook an Inquiry into enhancing Victoria's Liveability. Arts Victoria's submission to the inquiry, in association with Applied Economics, is called 'The Role of Arts and Culture in Liveability and Competitiveness.'

Summary

  • Liveability is a broad concept which includes a combination of the social, cultural, economic and environmental attributes of a place. These attributes determine the attractiveness of a city or region as a place in which to work, live, invest and raise a family.
  • There is increased competition, nationally and internationally, between cities and between regions to attract new residents and new businesses.
  • Arts and culture contribute directly to the "sense of place" which attracts both residents and investors. There is a merging between the attributes of a city or region that are seen by individuals as offering them a better quality of life, or liveability, and those attributes that are seen by investors or businesses as offering them competitive advantage, that is, contributing to the city or region's competitiveness.
  • Vibrant and diverse arts and cultural activities are an important contribution to the liveliness and vitality of an urban environment.
  • The arts also contribute to well-designed public space making a local environment more attractive and accessible. Engagement with the local community in the development and design of public artworks creates public spaces where people want to meet; enriches urban regeneration projects; and distinctly brands a region or suburb as a destination for new residents, tourists and business.
  • Melbourne has a distinctive image as an international centre of innovation, including innovation in arts and culture. Melbourne is well-placed to build further on this sound reputation.
  • Regional cities in Victoria are also investing in cultural infrastructure and activities to create vibrant and diverse local cultural offerings attractive to new residents. In particular, in regional centres, the presence of a diversified lifestyle and cultural choices has been shown to be a key driver of high economic performance.