Toronto Cultural Policy and Plans 1974-2008:
Examining the Legacy

The Mavor Moore Cultural Policy Symposium

Hosted by the MBA Program in Arts and Media Administration at the Schulich School of Business, the Robarts Centre, and the City of Toronto.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Policy Timeline
Key Issues
Key Documents
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February 2, 2009

This website documents the symposium, Toronto Cultural Policy and Plans 1974 – 2008: Examining the Legacy held in Toronto on October 24, 2008.

The symposium, which was dedicated to Mavor Moore and to his legacy, looks back to a key period in the creation of cultural policy in Canada and forward to understand how that history has shaped and can shape our collective future. An ardent and committed figure on the Canadian cultural scene for over half a century, Mavor Moore was a public intellectual whose vision shaped the cultural scene of this country. Many of those involved in shaping the policies and the plans that were the focus of this symposium benefitted from Mavor's wise counsel.

The symposium project was multi-pronged. First, it collected and digitized the key documents in Toronto's policy history and made them accessible through this website, along with the timeline of events, and an extended bibliography. Secondly, it invited the authors of four of the principal documents that shaped Toronto's policies to think and write about their work, the context in which it was developed and the impact which it has had. Finally, it brought them together, with each other and with some of the key people who influenced their work, to examine these issues.

I am indebted to many people for making the symposium a reality. Rita Davies and Terry Nicholson of the Culture Division of the City of Toronto and Claire Hopkinson and Susan Wright of the Toronto Arts Council provided invaluable advice and assistance. Prof. Kevin Dowler, a member of the Culture of Cities project at York University, and Paul Schafer, a pioneer in municipal cultural policy and planning, shared their archives and their knowledge with us. We would also like to thank the librarians at the Toronto Public Library's Urban Affairs Library, who helped us access many of the key historical documents that now reside in digital form on this website. Seth Feldman at York’s Robarts Centre has supported the project and provided a home at Robarts for the ongoing work that will arise from this symposium. Robarts, the City of Toronto and the Schulich School of Business hosted the symposium.

They symposium would not have happened without the insights, hard work and collaboration of Elena Bird, Cultural Affairs Officer, City of Toronto, and Lewis Kaye, artist and a doctoral candidate in the Communications and Culture Program at York University. Working with them was a true pleasure.

It is our hope that Toronto Cultural Policy and Plans 1974 – 2008: Examining the Legacy will provide a record of the history of policy and plans in the City of Toronto, an examination of the legacies that we have created and inherited, a rich resource for anyone interested in understanding our past or in further research, and a sound basis on which to move forward. We welcome any suggestions for additions or comments that you might have.

Joyce Zemans, CM
Senior Scholar and University Professor Emerita
Director, MBA Program in Arts and Media Administration
Schulich School of Business
York University

To download a printable PDF copy of this webpage, click HERE