Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Poetics Program: Academic Year 2012-2013

Program Description

Introduction: During the 1st CCE planning meeting on November 30, 2012, the CCE planning committee created the following selection criteria for the project:

  1. To select populations in New Mexico that as a result of globalization and the increase of mechanized labor have had their traditional, ancestral, or creative production rendered vulnerable. In this regard, Female and Indigenous, and populations have been considered a priority for the 2012 CCE project.
  2. Part of our mission with the CCE is to develop a framework to address particular issues related to culture, entrepreneurship, and preservation. Among female and indigenous populations, we have determined that the cultural topics (how these cultures influence the creative economy in New Mexico and the global economy) are of direct interest to our 2012 project:
    • Hispanic culture
    • Native American culture
    • Immigrant/Diasporic cultures, including refugee populations within the greater Albuquerque community.
  3. In terms of creativity, we have narrowed down our inspection of creativity to several important subtopics. In these topics, we wish to explore the relationship between these creative processes and larger questions related to the global cultural economy. For example, how does food transform the cultural dynamics of a given political economy?
    • Food
    • Handcrafts
    • Performance
  4. We plan to produce videotaped workshops out of our discussions on each of these topics, working with particular members from the community to develop talking sessions that will be archived for use by our partners.

Program Documents

The Poetics Program has several components. We try to merge rigorous academic discourse with practical community outreach in relation to handmade goods, cultural entrepreneurship and what we refer to as "poetic production". We have developed two separate curricula, one for community outreach and the other for students of poetics.

Our community outreach curriculum can be applied to any group interested in improving their understanding of cultural entrepreneurship. Please look at the following information for ways to participate in our cultural entrepreneurship training sessions.

Poetics Program Community Outreach

Our academic curriculum incorporates theorists from a broad set of backgrounds. We incorporate thinkers from cultural theory, literary criticism, politics, business, law, and philosophy. This is an evolving curriculum. For a snapshot of some of the readings we encourage you to engage, please look at the following information.

Poetics Academic Curriculum

Also, we have a very special relationship with the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market. As their official consultants, we train our students to participate in the world's largest folk art market, assisting artists as well as helping the market address critical issues related to the market's strategic growth. We also have an internship opportunity that will be available in collaboration with the Social Entrepreneurs Corps. For more information please visit this link. See below for a brief description of our Folk Art Market training.

IBSG/Poetics Student SFIFAM Training


Sometimes, businesspeople need inspiration to build the right formula for success. More often than not, that inspiration comes in unpredictable unexpected ways. Entrepreneurs, particularly those that rely heavily on creativity often struggle to sell their product in a world where everything is mass-produced. Small businesses that leverage their cultural identity find it hard to preserve traditional values while remaining competitive and relevant. Even with the best ideas, every business can use help building a framework that can help make the best of the precious resources that make one unique – that makes us all stand for something better and worth doing.

Who we are

We are dedicated to providing educational support for entrepreneurs who want to engage in discussions that can help produce inspiration and creativity.

We believe that in the 21st century, producers of handmade goods are becoming part of a worldwide movement to keep our planet and its economy safe from over-exploitation and irresponsible production. We are here to help you define your role in making sure you are aware of trends in the global economy, and how to take part in the global economy.

We believe that ancestral cultures have a unique perspective that can help us revisit the things that protected life long before we ever considered ourselves modern.

We believe that telling stories about the work we do and about the things we make, has value. More often than not, it’s the most important part of what we do. However, it’s hard to build these stories into a meaningful part of your product. We are dedicated to help you figure out how to do that while remaining competitive.

What we do

We go out to the community and offer educational services to entrepreneurs, businesses or groups that support creative and cultural entrepreneurship. To help creative and cultural entrepreneurs develop business practices that can make the most of their resources, we have developed a curriculum that addresses many essential concerns. We provide discussion groups and presentations that are intended to get entrepreneurs to enhance their business plans, and to get inspired about the work they do.

What we offer

Here is a list of the presentations we are currently prepared to offer:

  1. Understanding the global economy in the 21st century. In this discussion we look at handmade goods and creative work as it is being produced all over the world. We pay close attention to the things (institutions and resources) that make it possible for handmade goods and creative work to thrive. Then we focus on the importance of this work in the global context. Finally, we discuss how local businesses can participate in those economic opportunities.
  2. Learning how to make a story a part of your value-chain. In this discussion we explain how the “intangible resources” in your work can be developed as the most meaningful part of your work. We help describe what a value-chain is, and why it’s important to understand. We discuss those stories play a role in cultural preservation, and in the development of new markets to sell your product.
  3. Cultural preservation in a changing world. In this discussion we address the challenges people face in preserving culture as the pressures throughout the world seem to make the work we do irrelevant or outdated. What does it mean to preserve culture? How do you find partners or laborers when it seems like the work you do doesn’t seem attractive to younger generations?
  4. Global Market Entry for Creative and Cultural Entrepreneurs. How do we enter new markets in a difficult global economy? 90 Percent of the global economy is made up of small businesses and entrepreneurs. However, most entrepreneurs fail because they do not have an effective strategy. In this discussion we help you develop a way to think about creating a competitive market entry strategy.
  5. Identity politics and making a difference. Culture is deeply related to identity. In this discussion we have a very strong discussion about how identity is an important part of our entrepreneurial agendas. Here we discuss how the work we do is related to human rights and corporate social responsibility. How is entrepreneurship a way to preserve the rights of women, of indigenous populations, and of vulnerable peoples throughout the world? What does it mean to empower people through our work and how do we do that effectively? Sometimes, the value you provide is earned by fighting the world’s fight. We have several examples we’ll introduce to get you inspired to make a difference if you so choose. We can make this presentation culturally specific. For example, we can focus specifically on women’s issues, Native American issues, or immigrant/disaporic communities.
  6. What makes you creative? Many people find that when your spaces change, you become unable to create in the same way you used to. This discussion helps identify how we understand our own creative environments, helping us develop skills to preserve the things that make you productive both as an artist and as a businessperson even when circumstances or your economic environments change.
  7. It’s not a bad thing to be a bookworm! In this section we focus on people and thinking that has helped us appreciate creativity and culture as part of economic activity. Instead of making this a traditional history lesson, we create a dynamic that makes these thinkers fun and accessible to a wide audience. We have several versions of this presentation for example: Thinking about the influence of the Frankfurt School; Mechanical Reproduction and Walter Benjamin; Taking Marx seriously – the tradition of capitalism in Marx’s work; Thinking beyond the West: epistemologies of the pre-modern and ancestral; Capitalism and Schizophrenia: Deleuze, Guattari, and Beyond; Economic sociology and cultural geography: learning to build economic maps.
  8. Cyborgs, Robots, and Bears, oh my! We now live in a world where artificial intelligence can produce a certain kind of creative product. Every day, you can see how we are increasingly attached to technological devices. One could argue that we are already cyborgs – what we would call “post-human.” This discussion helps us wrestle with the role that evolving technologies play in art and entrepreneurship.
  9. Preparing for the Zombie apocalypse! Our fascination with the end of the world has massive cultural value. We are bombarded with expressions of things that are too big for anyone to handle, and they are most adequately expressed through art, creativity, and a new global culture. We discuss these problems and how they relate to the entrepreneur.
  10. Collaboration + Competition. In a world where your work can easily be diminished, clusters (sometimes called economies of agglomeration) have become a very powerful way to preserve your work. Even if you belong to a co-op, or even if you run a cooperative, it’s good to know new trends in how collaboration is managed in different parts of the world. This discussion helps provide information about new trends in cluster management to help you think about ways to improve your own management practices.

How it works

Depending on time and the availability of resources, we work with you to choose from the “menu” of presentations we currently offer. Once we have agreed upon a set of presentations, we work with you on selecting an environment where this can occur in an effective way. While you are welcome to come to us, we are also committed to spending time with you and experiencing the work you do as well. If you have further questions about what we do and what we can offer you, please contact us.

Project Manager: Lynzie Rowland, MBA Candidate lrowland@unm.edu

Faculty Adviser: MJR Montoya, PhD., Assistant Professor FITE Department, mrmonto@unm.edu

In collaboration with:

The Global Center for Cultural Entrepreneurship: http://www.culturalentrepreneur.org

Academic Advisor

Dr. Manuel-J. R. Montoya