Canada Council for the Arts investing $88.5 million towards digital transformation of Canada’s art sector

canada council's art bank

The Canada Council for the Arts has established the Digital Strategy Fund, which is dedicated to helping Canadian artists, art groups, and art organizations understand and navigate the digital world.

The Canada Council for the Arts said that between 2017 and 2021, it will invest $88.5 million towards initiatives that aim to develop a user-centred culture of innovation in the arts. The funding will also support the adoption and deployment of available technological solutions in Canada’s arts sector.

For the 2017-2018 year specifically, the council plans to leverage $10 million of the fund to support artists, artistic groups, and organizations looking to develop and execute digital projects. Interested artists can apply to receive between $1,000 to $250,000 in funding for a single-phase initiative, or between $251,000 to 500,000 in funding for multi-phase initiatives.

“The Canada Council encourages initiatives that embody the values and principles of the digital world and the Digital Strategy Fund.”

Single-phase initiatives should have objectives, timelines, and expected results clearly set out, while multi-phase initiatives should have object and intentions clearly set out, and require an iterative approach to see desired results.

According to the Canada Council for the Arts, the Digital Strategy Fund will support three main areas including digital literacy and intelligence, public access to the arts and citizen engagement, and transformation of organizational models.

For digital literacy and intelligence, the council will provide project grants to Canadian artists and art organizations looking to respond to digital challenges and opportunities in the arts sector, as well as broaden their strategic digital thinking. The council will also provide grants that support the exploration, development, and implementation of digital initiatives that improve citizen access to an engagement with the arts (such as open data and freeware initiatives that foster citizen engagement or hackathons dedicated to developing new interactions with citizens).

Finally, the council will also offer project grants to support digital initiatives that can help art organizations change the way they work, such as projects that encourage organizations to use digital solutions for better management or using tech to redesign exercises, meetings, and other preparatory.

“The Canada Council encourages initiatives that embody the values and principles of the digital world and the Digital Strategy Fund, namely a focus on collaboration, partnership, and networking; open-mindedness and williigness to share knowledge, results, ideas, and lessons learned; and experimentation, risk taking and iterative development,” Canada Council wrote on its website.

Those interested in receiving a project grant from the Digital Strategy Fund can apply here.

Amira Zubairi

Amira Zubairi

Amira Zubairi is a staff writer at BetaKit. As a fourth-year journalism student who has written primarily about entrepreneurship, Amira has developed a growing interest in Canadian startup, business, and tech news. In her free time, Amira enjoys reading, baking and watching legal shows.