Call for Participation

ATTENTION Next Gen Arts and Culture Leaders:

Summit Invites Expressions of Interest to Attend the 20th Annual Summit

Join the leadership of Canada’s largest arts institutions for a stimulating weekend of networking, professional development and ideas exchange at the 20th Annual Canadian Arts Summit, CultureNEXT, May 12-14, 2017 at the Confederation Centre for the Art in Charlottetown, PEI |

From May 12-14, 2017, on the occasion of Canada’s 150th anniversary, the 20th annual Canadian Arts Summit CultureNEXT will bring together 150 extraordinary arts leaders from across the country to imagine the future of Canada’s creative life. As Canada looks forward to the next 50 years, issues around cultural diversity and inclusion, evolving digital technologies, cross-cultural and cross-disciplinary intersections, and reconciliation with Indigenous people in Canada are emerging as major drivers of cultural transformation.

CultureNEXT will be a space for inspiration, dialogue and exchange, as well as an opportunity for Canada’s most influential creative leaders to commit to collective action. How will Canada’s prominent cultural institutions create inclusive creative experiences reflective of Canada’s contemporary identity? How can we engage in an authentic process of reconciliation with Indigenous people in Canada? How can we work more effectively at the intersections of cultural expression and forms of practice through creative collaborations? How will we successfully transform our engagement with Canadians through digital innovation?

CultureNEXT will invite a diverse, multi-generational complement of delegates, speakers and special guests, including the artistic directors, executive directors and volunteer board chairs of Canada’s 70+ largest arts institutions. Organized by Business for the Arts, in partnership with the Banff Centre and the Confederation Centre as our 2017 host, the Canadian Arts Summit is the only national, cross-disciplinary gathering of arts leaders in the country.

If you’re inspired to contribute to this conversation alongside Canada’s top institutional leaders, we encourage you to tell us why. Through a simple online application process a small group of extraordinary individuals will be selected to attend the upcoming Summit in person as an invited guest! Invited Summit guests will have the opportunity to participate in plenary sessions, share perspectives during round table discussions and exchange ideas on current issues with Summit members, as well as enjoy networking opportunities with important leaders in the arts, culture and business sectors. Attendees will be chosen through a formal selection process led by members of the CAS Steering Committee.

The Canadian Arts Summit (“CAS”) is a unique national leadership forum, coordinated through a partnership between The Banff Centre and Business for the Arts. It brings together the chief executives, artistic directors, and board chairs of Canada’s largest not-for-profit cultural institutions: symphony orchestras, theatres, opera and ballet companies, as well as heritage and art museums.

The first Summit in 1998 was predicated upon the belief that these influential leaders — volunteers, artists, and managers — could, by working together, better support Canadian artistic aspirations. Each Summit since then has been shaped by its participants and has evolved over its first 17 years to become not just a weekend event in the spring, but an ongoing network of arts leaders working together, throughout the year.

Interested participants who wish to attend the Arts Summit should submit a brief letter of interest outlining the following:

  • Your professional background.
  • A description of how your participation would enrich the CAS discussions around leadership.
  • A description of how you would benefit from this experience as a current or emerging leader.

Deadline: Wednesday, January 18th, 2017
Invitations to selected individuals will be made no later than Monday February 13th, 2017

Please address your letter of interest to:
Robert Foster, Chair
20th Annual Canadian Arts Summit

For more information and for past program details, please visit us at
2017 program details will be announced in early February.

Please note the Steering Committee may not be able to accommodate all interested individuals. In making their selections, the Committee strives to achieve the optimal balance of representation and participation from both members and guests. They will aim to invite a diverse group, taking into account artistic, geographic and experiential backgrounds/perspectives, particularly as it relates to the 2017 programmatic theme and content.

Financial Assistance

Invited guests may be provided with a financial subsidy to underwrite some of the costs associated with attendance, based on financial need and limited available funds. Should financial support be required to participate in the Summit, please submit the Financial Assistance Request Form below with your letter of interest:

Thank you for your interest. The call for participation is now closed.