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Capability-Promoting PoliciesEnhancing Individual and Social Development$
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Hans-Uwe Otto, Melanie Walker, and Holger Ziegler

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781447334316

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447334316.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM POLICY PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.policypress.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Policy Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PPSO for personal use.date: 05 July 2022

Culture, equity and social wellbeing in New York City

Culture, equity and social wellbeing in New York City

(p.131) Seven Culture, equity and social wellbeing in New York City
Capability-Promoting Policies

Mark J. Stern

Susan C. Seifert

Policy Press

This chapter examines how the capability approach has been applied to cultural policymaking in New York City using a multidimensional index of social wellbeing for the city's neighbourhoods. The project was conceived based on the belief that cultural engagement is a core capability in its own right and that it can facilitate the achievement of other capabilities, the so-called ‘fertile functionings’. The chapter first provides an overview of the political context within which the current research has taken place before outlining three conceptual contributions to the discussion of capability-promoting policies: culture as a capability, the importance of neighbourhood context, and the tension between social justice and democratic decision making. It then describes a measure of cultural engagement based on the presence of institutions (non-profit and for-profit cultural resources), artists and cultural participants in a neighbourhood. Finally, it explains how capability-promoting cultural policy can be used to address long-term social inequality.

Keywords:   capability approach, cultural policymaking, New York City, social wellbeing, neighbourhoods, cultural engagement, fertile functionings, democratic decision making, cultural policy, social inequality

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