Participatory Development through Art (PAD) is a unique conference where academics, practitioners, artists and Indigenous actors gather to exchange their knowledge, experiences and ideas on participatory development through art, as well as the questions of indigenous rights, art and culture. PAD is organized by the Faculty of Art and Design at the University of Lapland.
The growing relevance of participatory development has been recently manifested in many fields, especially in development studies and arts, but also in Indigenous studies, social sciences and humanities more generally. The participatory turn places significant emphasis on the role of communities in determining their own development priorities and designing solutions addressing their interests and needs. The turn has taken place in parallel with the growing popularity of art-based research methods, and the two have become intertwined in many different ways.
The conference begins with an art exhibition titled Kalahari Highway (15.8–16.9.2018), which displays artworks created in participatory workshops with Indigenous San communities in Namibia and South Africa during 2017–2018. Conference themes include, for example: what kind of factors unite the Indigenous experience in different parts of the globe? How can these experiences be presented through art? What kind of techniques, participatory processes and artistic practices can be used to increase the sense of participation of youth in different countries? What are the best practices in research ethics when working with Indigenous and other marginalized communities?
You are welcome to join us in the beautiful Arctic city of Rovaniemi!