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2012/2013  KAN-CM_E33  Arts Management

English Title
Arts Management

Course information

Language English
Exam ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Course period Spring
Changes in course schedule may occur
Wednesday 15.20-17.00, week 6-20
Time Table Please see course schedule at e-Campus
Study board
Study Board for MSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course coordinator
  • Søren Friis Møller - Department of Management, Politics and Philosophy
Administrative contact: Karina Ravn Nielsen - electives.lpf@cbs.dk or 3815 3782
Main Category of the Course
  • Innovation and entrepreneurship
  • Management
  • Experience economy and service management
  • Corporate and Business Strategy
Last updated on 16-10-2012
Learning objectives
  • Learn how aesthetic management devices such as narratives or visuals contribute to the creation of social worlds and how these can be used in organizational change processes
  • Learn how aesthetic practice is a widespread social phenomena and how this knowledge can be used in the production and commercialization of immaterial goods
  • Learn how aesthetic approaches to problem solving contribute to creating value adding solutions
  • Learn to make use of management and marketing methods invented by arts and culture businesses.
Arts Management:
Type of test Oral with Written Assignment
Marking scale 7-step scale
Second examiner Second internal examiner
Exam period May/June
Aids Without preparation
Duration 20 Minutes
Individual oral examination based on a synopsis.

Synopsis max 5 pages for 1 student. Max. 8 pages for groups of 2-4 students.
Course content

Recently the Economist wrote that business management has much to learn from the arts: Communicate more eloquently, learn how to manage crucial talent, and become more innovative. It suggests that the art and culture industries are frontrunners in developing aesthetic management practices that work effectively also in the business organizations. This idea of the popular press has deeper roots than it might seem at a first glance. Management scholars and practitioners around the world have discovered the arts as a viable source for new and surprising ways to make their organizations fit for contemporary challenges. Originality, strange encounters, and aesthetically grounded communication are getting appreciated. The arts, artists, and managers of cultural institutions serve as inspiration, generative analogies, and as sources for new management techniques. Since this learning from the arts suggests more intuitive attention patterns, aesthetic means of influence, and holistic ways of thinking than it is common in traditional management, we like to capture it with the general term Aesthetic Management.

We also like to claim that aesthetic management is not really new. Throughout history the use of aesthetic communication in narratives, visuals, gestures, and sounds has been core to managerial power and control. From classical speeches and management autobiographies to intranet mass mailing, from organizational histograms and branded symbols to developer communities, and from corporate anthems and jingles to customized soundscapes, the distribution channels for aesthetic communication have multiplied and diversified through the use of new technologies over the years. This has led to a more open access to devices for aesthetic communication. It is no longer the prerogative of managers but in principle available to everybody.

However, to improve management practice with the help of the arts is not an easy feat. There is quite a lot of nonsense presently on offer. To introduce the student to how managers learn successfully from and with the arts, and to get an overview of what has already been learned, we will draw on a number of case studies like “Olafur Eliasson”, “Zentropa”, “Bayreuth”, “Louisiana”, “Cirque de Soleil”, ”Andy Warhol” and “Michelangelo Pistoletto”. The cases will clearly position the role of professional management towards arts and culture business concepts. This positioning will facilitate exploring new management methods coming out the arts such as improvisations, happenings/installations, collages/assemblages, relational events, or postproduction-techniques. In this part we use sources from the arts to innovate ourselves, and to gain a view on efficient and effective aesthetic management.

The course’s development of personal competences:

•    The students should build a repertoire of action around their managerial knowledge. They will learn when to use aesthetic management, and when to rely on classical management techniques
•    They will be able to understand and to enact the role of a manager in a creative team.
•    Since we expect that students will join the course because of personal interests in arts and management they will learn how to turn personal competences in the arts into an asset for a management career.

Teaching methods
The course includes lectures, case study discussions, and situated learning sessions with international guest speakers from arts practice. We also aim to organize short study tours to the Copenhagen art world.

Examples of lecture title are:
• The art firm
• Aesthetic communicative devices
• Artful making
• Dealing with complexity
• The art of innovation
• Managing talent
Expected literature

Tentative literature:
Austin, Rob, and Lee Devin 2003 Artful making. Upper Saddle River, NJ.: FT Prentice Hall.

Bruner, J. 1990 Acts of Meaning. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press

Bourrieau, N.2002. Relational Aesthetics. Les Presses du réel, Dijon OBS

Chong, D. 2010. Arts Management. London: Routledge.

Darsø, L. 2004. Artful creation: Learning-tales of arts-in-business. Copenhagen: Samfundsliteratur.

Eco, U., 1989. The Open Work. Harvard University Press OBS

Goffman, E. 1990. The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life. Londong: Penguin Books.

Guillet de Monthoux, P. 2004 The Art Firm, aesthetic management and metphysical marketing.Palo Alto; Stanford University Press

Guillet de Monthoux, P.,Gustafsson, C.,Sjöstrand, S-E.,2007. Aesthetic Leadership. Basingstoke; Palgrave McMillan

Boyle, M-E., and Ottensmeyer, E. 2005. ‘Solving business problems through the creative power of the arts: Catalyzing change at Unilever’. Journal of Business Strategy 26/5: 14–21.

Raffnsøe, S. 1998. Filosofisk æstetik. Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanums Forlag.

Schein, E. H. 2001. ‘The role of art and the artist’. Reflections 2/4: 81–83.

Shaw, P. & Stacey, R. (eds.) 2006. Experiencing Risk, Spontaneity and Improvisation in Organizational Change, Working Live. London: Routledge.

Taylor, S. S., and Carboni, I. 2008 ‘Technique and practices from the arts’ in The SAGE Handbook of New Approaches in Management and Organization. D. Barry and H. Hansen (eds), 220–228. London: Sage.

Velthuis, O. 2005. Imaginary Economics. Rotterdam: NAI Publisher.

Last updated on 16-10-2012