September 2002 saw the birth of The Art of Management and Organization Conference on London’s legendary South Bank. Its aim was, and continues to be, the exploration and promotion of the arts (in the most inclusive sense) as a means of understanding management and organizational life and its contexts. Since then the conference has continued its collaborative and open ethos in Paris (2004), Krakow (2006), Banff (2008) and Istanbul (2010) and has given rise to a vibrant global community of praxis – including both scholars and practitioners. Although it is primarily a refereed academic conference, it is also a place for integration. Previous keynotes and featured events have included rock stars, comedians, actors, poets, musicians, artists, storytellers, dancers, photographers, calligraphers and philosophers.
Creativity has always been synonymous with the arts, but not with management. Indeed, managing creativity has been constructed as a perennial problem for organizations, creatives not being seen as comfortable with bureaucracy, nor willing to sacrifice autonomy. But recently, their entrepreneurial spirit has been mythologised and the creative industries have been elevated to the status of role model for the knowledge economy. Everyone is supposed to be creative now. The world of work is equally one of play and invention, we are told – if, in the current context we are lucky enough to have work, if not... create it. Is it really such a problem if we’re not creative ? Do we all have to be leaders/managers/entrepreneurs too ?
The Conference will feature an exhibition by Dr. Ann Rippin, who is known for her pioneering work in integrating haptic and visual experience through quilting into three dimensional critiques of corporate history and strategy. There will be an ongoing exercise in social architecture, performance of a play, a musical event, a film showing, several workshops, and “focus streams” on poetry, image and the visual, the hand.