ADESTE applies innovative approach to audience development training

The ADESTE consortium held its fourth project meeting from 29-30 January in Turin, Italy. Hosted by project leader, the Fitzcarraldo Foundation, the main purpose of this gathering was to discuss the design of the project’s training module aimed at supporting cultural organisations and practitioners in having a greater impact on access to culture and cultural participation and to strengthen audience development competences of professionals working in the arts and culture in Europe.

​Since the meeting in Lecce, Italy in September 2014, based on the ADESTE research findings two sets of skills in audience development practice and leadership were identified. Led by The Audience Agency who is responsible for the development of the training module, ADESTE partners came to the conclusion to test a training module that includes​ development of hard and soft ​skills, action learning, online resources, and the creation of a peer network.

Having all the project partners together, this was a prime opportunity for everyone to learn more about Action Learning which will be an important part of the ADESTE training. For this occasion, ADESTE invited Action Learning expert, Ruth Cook from Action Learning Partnerships in the United Kingdom to explain the method, answer questions and facilitate two action learning sessions for ADESTE project partners. Action learning is a process which involves working on real challenges, using the knowledge and skills of a small group of people combined with skilled questioning, to re-interpret old and familiar concepts and produce fresh ideas. As it encourages deeper reflection, questioning, and problem solving, Action Learning will be useful for the trainees to explore issues they encounter during the training, at their place of work, in audience development practice, etc.

Partners also used the time in Turin to discuss the project's pilot training phase, go over the ADESTE exploitation plan, and review ongoing communication activities. The next ADESTE meeting is scheduled for April 2015 in London and will gather project partners, trainers and trainees.