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Capacity building program for leaders in arts and culture: Call for participants

  • Lecture / Symposium

Capacity building program for leaders in arts and culture
Polishing a path for sustainable activities in arts and culture

The Arts Academy program is aimed at the discovery and cultivation of leaders of arts and culture for the coming age, and contribution to research on cultural policies and supports for arts and culture.

Since 2018 we have offered a capacity building program to help future leaders develop the multi-faceted thinking abilities and skills essential to putting them on the path to solving problems faced in their creative endeavors, to creating new value, as well as to achieving their goals. The course is designed to help strengthen the infrastructure for, and give greater impetus to, the activities of diverse creative leaders who develop their own practices with a broad perspective on the relationship between arts and culture and society.

The program in an interactive seminar format is based on the two principal constituents of classroom-based lectures, discussion and workshops for 16 course participants, and the writing and presentation of a report on problem-solving/goal achieving strategies rooted in the activities of each participant. The program offers an opportunity for participants with established careers in a variety of fields to come together, gain new perspectives and put these to practical use by learning from each other.

This year’s course will include some public lectures given online, providing the opportunity for more creative leaders aiming to step up their activities to deepen their knowledge towards strengthening the infrastructure for their activities.
Since the coronavirus pandemic, we have been facing the big questions of “well-being,” “sustainability” and “AI” interconnected with life, the environment, ethics etc.; not just in arts and culture but in a variety of social areas. Meanwhile in the field of arts and culture, there is an urgent need to review and expand the infrastructure for activities that respond to such social changes, and discussion is currently underway on various issues such as the funding, public support, and education/training needed for this. Against this background, to support the continuation and development of the activities of the next generation of leaders in arts and culture, in this course we plan and implement a variety of continuous programs; from those that provide the opportunity to hone thinking and practical skills to lectures that look at the value of arts and culture.

The interactive seminars are aimed at participants with a broad perspective on the relationship of arts and culture with society who strive to improve the overall creative environment, and diverse creative leaders who wish to draw up and put into practice a ten-year vision. The seminars offer the opportunity for fellow participants and lecture instructors as well as facilitators/advisors to explore new possibilities for the creative environment together, and provide a closed and intensive learning forum for mutual growth and study.
The open lectures are for people aiming to step up their activities, those who are involved in arts and culture in a variety of ways and those who will fully engage in the sector going forward. These offer opportunities providing pointers and knowledge for participants to advance their own activities. Through these efforts, the course aims to contribute to participants’ capacity building and networking, and to improvement in the overall environment for arts and culture.

The 2023 program will be run as an initiative under the Tokyo Arts and Culture Consultation and Support Center (provisional title) scheduled to open in October.

Programs of past years
【FY 2018 – FY 2022 (in Japanese)】
Activity report/ Problem-solving/value creation strategies report collection

【Video digest (in Japanese)】
– FY2018:[YouTube]
– FY2019:[YouTube]
– FY2020:[YouTube]
– FY2021:[YouTube]
– FY2022:[YouTube]

【Course report blog (in Japanese)】

Application briefing

*For attendees primarily interested in interactive seminars.

Date/time: Wednesday, August 16, 2023 19:00 – 20:00
Method of implementation: online (only in Japanese)
How to apply: Send an e-mail with the subject line “AA Capacity building program application briefing” to and include your name, current position/title, and e-mail contact address.
*Applications by e-mail will be taken until 15:00 on Tuesday, August 15. We will then e-mail you information on the online application briefing.
*If you require Japanese sign language interpreting, please apply before 17:00 on Monday, August 7.

*Your personal information will only be used to send you information from the organizers about this event.

Number of places / eligibility

Interactive seminars
All lectures + Interim discussion + Individual consultation + the writing and presenting of a report on problem solving/ goal achieving strategies.
Number of places: Around 16 persons
eligibility:Professionals with experience of three years or more in the area of arts and culture (mainly non-profit activities), including self-managed artists/creators, producers, curators, coordinators, art managers, arts organizations/art NPO personnel, program officers for arts and culture support organizations, people in governmental/corporate roles in charge of cultural affairs, and researchers (in any field).

Open lectures (2nd, 4th and 6th sessions: online)
Number of places: N/A
eligibility:People involved in the field of arts and culture (any number of years’ experience and in any field)
*Application information will be released one month before each course.

Program contents

With Tomonori Ogawa and Tomoko Wakabayashi as facilitators and advisors, the program will feature guest lecturers chosen according to the content of the lectures, and consist of the following program. All sessions will be conducted in Japanese: (*1)

  1. Classroom lectures: 6 sessions (see below)
  2. Interim discussion
  3. Final presentation of report on problem-solving/value creation strategies: 1 session
    Based on knowledge gained through the interactive seminars and public lectures, participants will spend around a month writing a strategy report that will contribute to problem-solving/value creation strategies in their own work, and then deliver it at a final presentation. (*2)
  4. Individual consultation: 1 session
    Before the writing of the report, we will offer individual consultation sessions with advisors/facilitators in line with participants’ individual challenges, their perspectives and awareness of issues, etc. (*3)

*1 Interactive seminars to be held on-site at Arts Council Tokyo (4-1-28 Kudankita, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo), public lectures to be streamed online.
*2 A report on problem-solving/value creation strategies and other deliverables will be edited and published on our website and elsewhere as deemed necessary by Arts Council Tokyo.
*3 Individual consultation dates will be organized separately for the period the January 2024. For interactive seminar participants only.

*Please note that the program is subject to change according to the circumstances.

【Session 1: Interactive seminar (closed session)】
Monday, September 25, 2023 10:30 – 16:30
Developing vision/mission and Developing fundraising: Reaffirming / exploring organizational mission and developing the fundraising capacity necessary for projects / activities
Lecturer: Keita Yamamoto
1st half (around 1 hour)
– Introduction to the program/operating team, self-introductions by participants
– Introductory lecture (scheduled)
2nd half (around 4 hours)
– Lecture and workshop on taking stock of vision and mission for activities/organizations
– Grasping an overall picture of fundraising for projects/activities, adapting practices, expanding ideas, and exploring new possibilities
– Understanding the diversity and potential of funding methods
– Sharing, thinking etc. about the practical problems of fundraising

【Session 2: Open lecture|online】
Thursday, October 12, 2023 18:30 – 21:00
Developing an evaluation axis for conveying the significance of activities: Learning the mindset and methodology of evaluation with the use of logic models
Lecturer: Yuriko Minamoto
– Thinking about evaluation for extracting “social value”
– Finding ways to strengthen your organization/activities by having an evaluation axis

【Session 3: Interactive seminar (closed session)】
Monday, October 30, 2023 18:30 – 21:00
Evaluation workshop: Making use of logic models to refine techniques for improvement and change
Lecturer: Yuriko Minamoto
– Experiencing a participatory evaluation workshop to use logic models as tools, look back on activities, and learn about evaluative thinking to lead to continuous improvement in efforts and to social change.

【Session 4: Open lecture|online】
Wednesday, November 15, 2023 18:30 – 21:00
Dialog with practitioners: Art and expression created by a community. Learning from these experiments/practices
Lecturer: Nozomu Ogawa
– Perspectives and understanding based on past activities and practices: As seen from examples in Tokyo/other parts of Asia/Europe
– Relaying the value of culture and art
– Learning examples and ideas applicable to individual activities

【Interactive seminar (closed session)】
Wednesday, November 29, 2023 18:30 – 21:00
Interim discussion: Organizing thought, identifying challenges and setting agendas
Faciliteter and adviser: Tomonori Ogawa, Tomoko Wakabayashi
– Based on lectures so far, participants organize their thoughts, take stock of resources around their activities, and explore afresh some pointers towards identifying and solving problems. Participants share fresh insights etc. gleaned from discussion and other aspects of the course.
– Refining self-diagnosis work (using concept sheets), mutual feedback

【Session 5: Interactive seminar (closed session)】
Wednesday, December 13, 2023 18:30 – 21:00
What is “culture” and “art”? Refining skills to reconsider the relationship between arts and culture and society, starting with “cultural rights”
Lecturer: Miho Nakamura
– From other concepts related to “cultural rights” (including the right to life and a living, social rights, human rights, the right to liberty, the right to education, the right to the pursuit of happiness), we consider the meaning of arts and culture for everyone bar none; from the perspective of “cultural rights”we consider public cultural policies that do not solely promote “lucrative culture”; and refine our ability to broadly rethink the possibilities of arts and culture.
– Students apply a broad global perspective to gain deeper insight into the theoretical background of cultural policies that elucidate the value of art and culture. The cultural policies to be looked at include the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the UNESCO Constitution, and the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions.

【Session 6: Open lecture|online】
Wednesday, January 10, 2024 18:30 – 21:00
Arts and culture and society: An overview of the value and position of arts and culture in society
Lecture: Masanori Aoyagi
– Why is creative activity necessary for society?
– Taking an overview of the environment surrounding creative activities and objectively reassessing the value of activities
– Taking an overview of social values based on the intrinsic value of arts and culture

【Individual consultation days (closed session)】
Scheduled for early to mid-January, 2024
Faciliteter and adviser: Tomonori Ogawa, Tomoko Wakabayashi
– Through interviews with advisors and facilitators, participants explore specific solutions, plans and processes with regard to their individual creative activities, as well as approaches to the challenges and their awareness of issues in the creative environment.

【Interactive seminar (closed session)】
Thursday, February 8, 2024 17:00 – 21:00
Final presentation of report on problem-solving/value creation strategies
Faciliteter and adviser: Tomonori Ogawa, Tomoko Wakabayashi
– Proposing concrete implementation methods for Problem-solving/value creation strategies encountered in arts and culture-related activities, sharing mutual thinking.

Faciliteter and adviser, Lectures

【Faciliteter and adviser】

Tomonori Ogawa

 photo by Yuri Yasuda ©Ko Na design
Tomoko Wakabayashi


Keita Ymamoto

Yuriko Minamoto

Nozomu Ogawa

Miho Nakamura

 Photo by Itaru Hirama
Masanori Aoyagi

Application requirements【Interactive seminar】

As well as understanding the purpose of this program, applicants should be research-aware, motivated to attend lectures, and fall under all of the following. Applicants should:

– Be willing to plan problem-solving measures to make concrete efforts towards improving their own activities.
– Be willing to contribute to the development of the environment for arts and culture.
– Attend every lecture and the final presentation and be able to proactively interact and hold discussions with lecturers and other students. (*1)
– Be able to prepare and submit a problem-solving / value creation strategies report. (*2)
– Be able to access a PC with inbuilt microphone/camera, and an internet communication environment (Wi-fi, optical line transmission, CATV, etc.), in case of joining online (simultaneous two-way communication-type) discussions. (*3)
– Have the intention of being involved in activities that contribute to the promotion of arts and culture after the course ends, and be able to assist with questionnaire-based surveys conducted by Arts Council Tokyo for after completion of the course.
– Ability to cooperate with publicity activities.(*4)

(*1) Priority will be given to students who can attend all interactive seminars and public lectures.
(*2) Reports for the final presentation will be edited for publication.
(*3) Smartphone screens are small, and you may not be able to view materials, so we recommend students take classes via a PC.
(*4) A list of students and photos will be posted on the Arts Council Tokyo website and in reports.

Fee and venue

Admission Fee: Free
– Interactive seminar: Arts Council Tokyo
– Open lecture: Online

*Intellectual Property Rights: Copyright in deliverables such as reports created by students belongs to Arts Council Tokyo (Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture). Reports and other deliverables as well as images/video footage of each lecture will be edited and published on our website and elsewhere.
*Other: there is no remuneration for program attendance or submission of report, or allowances for transportation, etc.

Required Application/documents method【Interactive seminar】

Required documents
Participants should download the designated application form and fill in the following required items.

– Photograph of your face, name, age, current address, e-mail address, contact telephone number, current position/title, academic background, work experience, personal information such as licenses/qualifications etc. (*1)
– Short report/motivation for application (About 800-1000 characters) (*2)
Contents: Describing your own activities from an objective viewpoint, incorporating the following:
(1) Overview of activities (2) Management system (3) Aims and objectives (4) Present outcomes (including external evaluation) (5) Issues/problem awareness as perceived at the present time (6) Ideas for problem-solving/value creation strategies (7) Motivation for application

(*1) Please note that personal information supplied in this application will be used by Arts Council Tokyo within the scope required for the selection of applicants, in accordance with the privacy policy of Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture.
(*2) Please note you will have the opportunity to share your short report/motivation for application with the instructor(s) and other participants in program lectures.

Application form
here(Word) *In Japanese

How to apply
Please apply via e-mail to

Application period
Before 17:00 from Tuesday, July 18 through Thursday August 31, 2023


Members of a selection committee established by Arts Council Tokyo will review the application documents submitted.

Applicants, whether successful or unsuccessful, will be notified by email of the results by Monday, September 11, 2023, or thereabouts.
Please note that we are unable to respond to inquiries by telephone, etc. concerning the results. Additionally, please note we plan to include a list of participants on the Arts Council Tokyo website page introducing our projects.

*Please note that personal information supplied in this application will be used by Arts Council Tokyo within the scope required for the selection of applicants, in accordance with the privacy policy of Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture.

Tokyo Arts and Culture Consultation and Support Center (provisional title)

In October 2023, Tokyo Metropolitan Government and Arts Council Tokyo (Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture) will conduct a full-scale launch of Tokyo Arts and Culture Consultation and Support Center (provisional title), which supports and empowers artists and cultural practitioners in their sustainable activities and from their onward. Collaborating with external specialists such as lawyers and licensed tax accountants, the center will provide comprehensive support to artists and practitioners in the field of arts and culture through three functions: (1) offering a consultation service (2) providing useful information and (3) offering learning initiatives.
*Lectures will be run by Tokyo Arts and Culture Consultation and Support Center


【Program contents/ interactive seminar application】
Consultation and Support Division, Initiatives and Grants Department
Arts Council Tokyo, Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture
TEL:03-6256-9237 (Weekday 10:00-18:00)

【Application briefing and Open lectures application】

Open Network for Performing Arts Management (ON-PAM)
TEL: 080-8395-6124 (Weekday 10:00-18:00)


Arts Council Tokyo, Online



Organized by
Arts Council Tokyo (Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture)
Operation by
Open Network for Performing Arts Management (ON-PAM)