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As from 1 July 2010, this site will no longer be updated and will be retained for Archive purposes only.

For the latest information on the Arts, Creative Industries and Film & TV in Scotland please visit:

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Artistic leadership

The Scottish Arts Council is a recognised sector leader for the arts community.  We act as a support and development agency, creating and brokering new opportunities for artists with a range of partners, including local authorities, educational establishments, SportScotland, Scottish Screen, public and private museums and galleries, Channel 4 and the BBC. 

Our role is to 

  • encourage and expand good practice
  • challenge and enable individual artists
  • develop long-term national and international strategies for the development of the arts. 

Belinda Guidi Exhibition at the CCA; Photo: Alan McAteer

We are committed to nurturing artists' networks, pulling together often disparate groups to build and strengthen arts communities.  We aim to facilitate opportunities for professional development for artists through open funding schemes while remaining aware of the need to keep learning and to evolve.

Not only are we responsible for allocating Scottish Government and National Lottery money through multi-year support and project funding to organisations and individual artists, but we have a responsibility to monitor and evaluate the quality of the artistic provision that we support.

Artistic guidance

The Scottish Arts Council believes that arts organisations should ensure that devising and planning a high quality arts programme should incorporate all aspects of their work and members of their team:

  • Artistic
  • Education
  • Marketing/Audience development 
  • Fragments 1 by Jack Cunningham; Photo: Shannon Tofts 

    This ensures an integrated approach to delivering artistic product to audiences. We recognise that evaluating the success of previous work and learning from any challenges is invaluable in developing the art forms and raising the bar on artistic quality. 


    The long-term ambition for all funded organisations is for equalities to be pervasive throughout the organisation and its artistic product and practice.

    It is recognised however, that with extensive new legislation coming on-stream that this is an area in which organisations need support and so it is to be developmental until 2010.

    Lung Ha's Theatre Company; Photo: Joanna van den Berg

    For further information and useful links please visit the Equalities section of the Scottish Arts Council website.

    Taking Part

    Taking Part is a survey commisioned every two years by the Scottish Arts Council examining public attendance and participation in the arts and cultural activity over the preceding 12 months. Latest figures reveal that 90 per cent of people in Scotland attend or participate in the arts and cultural activity.

    See also
    * Quality Framework home page
    * Quality Framework: guidelines for arts organisations
    * Scottish Arts Council Quick Guides
    * Scottish Arts Council strategies
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