Dialogue with NEA and NSF on Shared Futures

In mid-September 2010, Donna Cox participated in a historic conversation between the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Science Foundation.  The summit description appears below.

Re/Search: Art, Science, and Information Technology

A Joint Meeting of the National Science Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts

This workshop seeks to advance exploration at the intersection of art and science. Areas of particular interest include evolving forms of digital and electronic media, human‐centered computing, videogame design and technology, digitally‐mediated performing and visual arts and research that can lead to a better understanding of these fields.

The primary purpose of this discussion is to lay the foundation for articulating the types of inquiry that both lie at the intersection of concerns of the National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) as well as represent opportunities for advancing scientific knowledge and new forms of artistic research, output and engagement.

To accomplish these goals, we seek to create a new dialogue among influential thought leaders who can help guide us towards innovation and positive change. The workshop will include highly interactive working groups and brainstorming sessions around key topics and questions as:

• How can we identify innovative, and/or emerging practices being discovered at the intersection of art and science that are potentially transformative and/or deserving of governmental recognition and support?

• How can we explore and understand the impacts of creativity and critical interpretation theories on research and innovation in cognitive science, computer science, engineering, technology, art theory, and/or the social and behavioral sciences?

• Are there metrics we can use or design that can determine the value and impact of interdisciplinary collaborations between Computer & Information Science & Engineering related disciplines and disciplines that exist in the arts and humanities?

• Are there qualitative methods for critically interpreting and measuring the impact of technology‐rich creative endeavors that are resistant to established assessment oriented‐frameworks?

• What role can the arts play in developing strategies and finding creative solutions in environments where the arts do not traditionally come into play.

Goals & Objectives

• Fostering dialogue in support of interagency and inter‐institutional collaboration and resource opportunities.

• Identifying points of intersection between human‐centered computing, information‐technology research, digital media arts, creative disciplines and cognitive science.

• Developing a field impact report about the needs, approach and benefits of a sustainable platform for interdisciplinary research for the creative information technology field. We hope that you will be able to participate in this groundbreaking conversation and join us in this national effort to foster innovative collaboration among creative practitioners in the arts and sciences.

— Kelly Searsmith