Vacancy -- Chair - Arts Council of Wales
Function of body
The Arts Council of Wales was established by Royal Charter in 1994. The Arts Council funded largely by grant in aid from the Welsh Government. It is also a registered charity subject to Charity Law and is one of the four Lottery Distributors in Wales.
The Council’s aims as set out in its Royal Charter are:
a) to develop and improve the knowledge, understanding and practice of the arts;
b) to increase the accessibility of the arts to the public in Wales;
c) to advise and co-operate with the Welsh Government and relevant bodies; and
d) to carry out the objects through the medium of both the English and Welsh languages.
As part of the terms and conditions of funding, Council Members have individual and corporate responsibility to the Welsh Government.
About the Arts Council of Wales
As the country’s funding and development agency for the arts, the Arts Council:
supports and develops high quality arts activity – it invests public funding, provided by the taxpayer, and allocated by the Welsh Government, helping the arts to thrive in Wales
develops and delivers the Welsh Government’s strategic priorities for the arts – it ensures appropriate mechanisms, process and procedures are in place to deliver on the strategic agenda set by the Welsh Government, as set out in the prevailing strategy document (currently the Programme for Government) and the Annual Remit letter
distributes Lottery funds – through applications to its funding programmes it invests in projects that develop new arts activity, supporting individuals and organisations
provides advice about the arts – through its staff and its advisers, the Arts Council has the largest concentration of arts expertise and knowledge in Wales
shares information – the Arts Council is the national centre of a network of information and intelligence about the arts in Wales. It also has strong international links in the UK and beyond
raises the profile of the arts in Wales – the Arts Council is the national voice for the arts in Wales, making sure that people are aware of the quality, value and importance of the country’s arts
generates more money for the arts economy – through initiatives such as Collectorplan – the Council’s scheme to encourage more people to buy art - and its work to secure European funding; these bring more money into the arts economy
influences planners and decision-makers – the arts take place in many different settings. They can have a dramatic impact on the quality of people’s lives, and the places in which they live and work. The arts are also frequently at the heart of initiatives for economic and social regeneration, from transforming learning in schools and for promoting health and wellbeing. The Arts Council plays a key role in ensuring that the contribution that the arts can make is recognised, valued and celebrated.
The role of the Chair
The Chair is accountable to Welsh Government Minister(s) and may also be held to account by Senedd Cymru / Welsh Parliament. Communications between the Council and the Minister must, in the normal course of business, be conducted through the Chair. The Chair must ensure other Council members are kept informed of all such communications.
The Chair is responsible for ensuring the Council’s policies and actions support the Minister’s wider strategic policies, and the Body’s affairs are conducted with probity. Where appropriate, the Chair must make arrangements to communicate and disseminate these policies and actions throughout the Body.
The Chair has particular leadership responsibilities for:
- formulating the Council’s strategies;
- ensuring the Council, in reaching decisions, takes proper account of statutory and financial management requirements and all relevant guidance including guidance provided by the Welsh Ministers;
- -developing strong and effective relationships with the council and wider sector.
- maintaining oversight of overall progress of the Arts Council of Wales’ senior leadership team, including the Chief Executive.
- promoting the economic, efficient and effective use of staff and other resources;
- ensuring high standards of regularity, propriety and governance; and
- representing the views of the Council to the public.
The Chair must also:
- ensure all Council members are briefed fully on the terms of their appointment and on their duties, rights and responsibilities;
- lead the council to actively widen access and create an inclusive Arts sector and organisation, in line with the Art’s Council of Wales’ Widening Engagement Action Plan and the Welsh Government’s Anti-racist Wales Action Plan, Action on Disability Framework and the LGBTQ+ Action Plan;
- provide oversight throughout the Investment Review process and transition to the revised model.
- ensure all Council members receive appropriate training, including on the financial management and reporting requirements of charities and public sector bodies and on the differences which might exist between private and public sector practice;
- ensure the Council has a balance of skills appropriate to directing the Body’s business;
- in instances where appointments to vacancies on the Council are to be made by the Minister, advise the Minister on the needs of the Body;
- assess the performance of individual Council members in accordance with the arrangements agreed with the partnership team and the performance of the Chief Executive.
- ensure an appropriate code of conduct for Council members, including rules and guidance on Council members’ interests and conflicts of interest, is in place.
Welsh language skills
In your application, you will be expected to demonstrate the following essential criteria, which will be tested further at interview:
- Experience of operating as a senior leader in a complex, multi-disciplinary organisation, and the ability to operate in an environment of change;
- A strong commitment to developing the role of the arts throughout Wales and extensive knowledge of the arts, culture, heritage and/or creative industries sectors. An appreciation of the cultural, economic and socio-political contexts in which the Arts Council of Wales operates; and its obligations under the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015;
- A proven track record of increasing diversity and promoting inclusion and equality. A demonstratable commitment to widening access and participation in the arts throughout Wales;
- Able to evidence a thorough understanding of good governance, accountability and financial responsibility, ideally including public sector finances;
- Experience of sound decision-making and leading the development of strategic, creative and impartial solutions and strategies to achieve long term goals;
- Demonstratable ability to build effective relationships across sectors and act as an ambassador for the arts. Command the confidence of stakeholders at all levels, including Ministers;
- Has a commitment to Nolan’s Seven Principles of Public Life.
- Experience of the arts, culture, heritage or creative industries in a Welsh context.
- Welsh Language (as detailed below) or a commitment to developing these skills within two years
- Experience or understanding of commercial and income-generating activities, including fundraising, and the ability to apply this to arts organisations, and/or
- Experience or understanding of applying digital technology for the promotion and sustainability of the arts.
We particularly welcome applications from women, disabled people and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people.
How to apply
To apply for this role, click on the ‘Apply’ button below. The first time you apply for a post, you will need to complete a registration form for the Welsh Government’s online application system. You will only need to register once, and you will be able to keep yourself updated on the progress of your application, and any other applications you make, via your registered account.
Once you’ve registered, you’ll be able to access the application form. To apply you will need to submit two supporting documents. The first, a document outlining how your knowledge, skills and experiences meet the criteria for the role as outlined in the information for candidates. This document should be no more than 2 sides of A4. Your application may be rejected if you exceed this limit. The second document is a full, up to date CV. The two documents should be uploaded to the ‘Reasons for applying’ section of the online application form.
In your application, you will also be asked to provide details of any activities which have helped you to develop skills that would be useful in a public appointment role, and list the organisations for which you undertook these activities. We also need to know about any political activity that you’ve undertaken over the last 5 years.
It is recommended that you register for an account and access the application form as soon as possible so that you see how the application form is structured, before starting to prepare your evidence. You don’t have to complete the application form all in one go. You can save your responses, and log in and out as required, until you’re ready to submit – just follow the guidance in the application form.
If you’d like to apply for this opportunity in Welsh, please use the ‘Newid Iaith / Change Language’ link at the top of this page, to take you to the Welsh version of this advert, from which you can apply in Welsh.
If you need any further assistance in applying for this role, please contact the Welsh Government’s Public Appointments Team on PublicAppointments@gov.wales.