By Andrea Orlando
The National Consortium for Creative Placemaking
Almost all survey respondents enjoyed themselves and gained useful information at the 2019 Pacific Creative Placemaking Leadership Summit in Los Angeles in June, according to the post-summit survey. An overwhelming majority reported that they learned more than they had expected.
"It was incredibly informative, diverse, and with tangible case studies. I walked away learning the three most important things I was hoping to learn - objectives met!" wrote one survey respondent.
The positive responses are consistent with surveys conducted after previous Creative Placemaking Leadership Summits. The National Consortium for Creative Placemaking organized four regional Summits in 2018 that culminated with another national Summit in the Washington D.C. area last October. This year, the national Summit will occur in Phoenix, Nov. 14-16, and will follow four regional Summits. (The fourth regional Summit will cover the Midwest in Cincinnati, Oct. 10-12.)
Of 186 people who registered for the Pacific Summit, 31 completed the online survey. Respondents liked their teachers. About 83 percent agreed or strongly agreed that they were satisfied with the diversity and quality of instructors. (Only 18 percent of the respondents identified as instructors. The rest were attendees.)
Some 81 percent reported they expanded their networks, and 90 percent agreed that there was plenty of time for networking. 77 percent concurred there was a good mix of learning experiences.
Summit attendees are typically an eclectic mix of leaders, volunteers and managers in a variety of professions, and many of them lead busy lives and wear multiple hats. The Pacific summit was no different. Survey participants work or volunteer at grant making organizations and in architecture, engineering, planning or design organizations. Many produce art, and a number of them are involved in arts advocacy and administration. They also work or study at schools, colleges or universities. Many also work in community or economic development. A small number work in destination marketing.
Respondents were allowed to identify with more than one industry, and many did. Of the 31 people who answered the question about profession, 13 people, or 42 percent, checked more than one box.
In each professional category, respondents were asked to identify as either an executive or key decision maker, a manager or coordinator, a self-employed person, consultant, student or other. In every category a preponderance of respondents identified either as key decision makers or managers, with the exception of art production. Most of the artists identified as either self employed or students/interns. In arts administration, most people identified as executive or key decision makers or managers.
NCCP values iterative processes that incorporate feedback and address evolving needs. To this end, the survey inquired what NCCP
could do to make future Summits even better. The answers, like our eclectic attendees, varied greatly. The most common suggestion was to hold the Summits at locations that embody creative placemaking values. A few respondents indicated that there were too many good choices and not enough time to attend everything. One person expressed disappointment that many people left the Summit before the third day, when four simultaneous field workshops in Los Angeles were held. A few people requested more structured networking intended for introverted people or those who wanted to quickly find their peers from their own professions. One individual suggested having an "action center" to test ideas in spaces. Another person suggested more options for people who do creative placemaking in rural areas.
For more information on Creative Placemaking Leadership Summits, please visit our website at www.cpcommunities.org/summits . Follow us on social media, where our handle is @cpcommunities