Policy

Policy is vital. It creates the frameworks and investment to enable the arts and culture sector to take rapid action on the climate crisis.

Julie’s Bicycle works with cultural and environmental policy-makers and funding bodies in the UK and internationally to shift the dial on policy and strategy. We believe that successful policy-making is developed in response to work happening on the ground, and must be underpinned by a commitment to climate justice and fairness.

Policy approach

JB empowers organisations to think through decision-making and form robust outcomes for policy and funding frameworks. We advocate for a dialogue between environmental and cultural policy makers at all levels – organisational, regional, national and international. We want to ensure a ‘just transition’ for the arts and culture sector that is mapped across two key frameworks: The Paris Agreement and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

“The culture grants and climate change work is a standout example of how the Council can demonstrate leadership and influence on this agenda, in no small part thanks to the excellent work of Julie’s Bicycle. “

– David Houliston, Strategic Lead Policy and Partnerships, Manchester City Council

Policy partners

Arts councils, city councils and networks, funding bodies and foundations, nonprofits.

Explore JB’s Policy Portal for recent work examples.

Visit the portal

JB’s policy work:

  • World Cities Culture Forum (WCCF)

    Culture is now understood as essential to creating resilient and sustainable cities. JB worked with the World Cities Culture Forum to explore the role of cities in climate transformation, developing research, a toolkit, handbook and exchange programme. Read more here.

    ROCK

    ROCK: Regeneration and Optimisation of Cultural heritage in Creative and Knowledge Cities, brought 32 partners from 13 countries together to support historic city centres to become labs that demonstrated the role for cultural heritage as a unique and powerful engine of regeneration, sustainable development. Read more here.

    C-Change Network

    C-Change is an URBACT transfer network of six cities, working together to build a model of cultural collaboration on climate based on the Manchester Arts Sustainability Team model. As C-Change Lead Expert, JB supported network learning and exchange, local implementation and overall delivery over three years. Read more here on the network, approach and results.

    G-MAST: Manchester

    Manchester’s cultural leaders first came together 10 years ago to address the environmental performance of the city’s cultural organisations, in line with the ambitions of the city’s first climate change strategy through the Manchester Arts Sustainability Team (MAST). It became a best practice example of cultural collaboration on climate, and now G-MAST is extending its remit across Greater Manchester. JB is a long-standing partner of the network, building understanding and action and sharing their model with other cities, in particular through the C-Change European cities network.
    JB also developed the MAST 5 year and 10 year reports.

  • Arts Council England (ACE)

    JB’s collaboration with Arts Council England led to a pioneering policy intervention in 2012, when ACE became the first cultural body to make environmental reporting and policy part of its funding agreements for National Portfolio organisations. See our Arts Council section for more. Our recent policy story animation can also be found on JB’s Policy Portal.

  • British Council Partnership

    JB delivered a series of international roundtables, arts policy research and a short films series as part of the British Council’s the Climate Connection, a global platform for dialogue, cooperation and action against climate change, in the lead up to the United Nations climate conference, COP26. The outcomes and findings can be explored on the Policy Portal.

    International Federation of Arts Councils and Culture Agencies (IFACCA)

    Julie’s Bicycle collaborated with IFACCA in 2015, before the COP21 climate talks in Paris, to conduct detailed research exploring how cultural policy internationally could align with climate action. Read the research here.

  • Tate Galleries
    To measure and communicate their environmental performance, Tate Galleries worked with JB to produce a carbon footprint report. The organisation is currently producing an Environmental Policy, detailing its commitment to reducing the negative environmental impact of all activities and operations across Tate sites, as well as focusing on employees, volunteers, working partners, patrons and visitors.

    Barbican Centre
    The Our Time on Earth exhibition piloted new ways of sustainable working at the Barbican. JB’s Creative Green team supported guest curators, Caroline Till and Kate Franklin, to develop an Ecological Manifesto: A set of guidelines for sustainable touring exhibitions, which asked partners and collaborators to sign up to its sustainability commitment to ensure all involved in delivery were working to the highest possible environmental standards. Barbican is now developing this practice, in collaboration with other departments, as part of a five-year sustainability strategy.

    Depot Lewes
    Independent cinema, Depot Lewes, is committed to working towards long-term solutions to reduce its environmental impact and to keep its carbon footprint as low as possible across all aspects of the organisation. The Depot supports the aims of the UN Paris Agreement, and is committed to applying Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) across the organisation, aiming to limit global warming to well below 2 Degrees Celsius, pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase further to 1.5 degrees Celsius by 2030. JB’s Creative Green team worked with Depot, and it scored four stars in its first CG Certification audit.

Learn more about Julie’s Bicycle

Explore our work

PICTURES: (From top to bottom) Header – Manchester Museum, photo by Steve Devine; // Music Declares Emergency steering committee meet European Commission Vice President Frans Timmermans in Brussels, 2020. Photo: Severine Bailleux; // C-Change organisers meeting in Agueda. Photo: Claire Buckley; //