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Festivals Forum – Appointment of Independent Members

Posted: 5th August 2016

About the Festivals Forum  

Alongside Festivals Edinburgh, the umbrella body for Edinburgh’s 12 major Festivals, the Festivals Forum enables the strategic collaboration that helps to maintain Edinburgh’s role as the world’s leading Festival city.  The Festivals Forum is an informal advisory body that meets three times a year to use its understanding and influence to create the conditions for the Festivals’ sustainability and growth.  It includes senior leaders of the main local and national public stakeholders of the Festivals together with independent members who bring insights from other walks of life.

The Forum oversees delivery of the ten year strategy to sustain the success of Edinburgh’s Festivals, Thundering Hooves 2.0, setting the context for long term strategic development.  It also articulates and oversees the investment strategy required, and encourages a positive working relationship between the Festivals and their stakeholders.


The Person  

The Festivals Forum is looking to appoint two new independent members to replace Sir Andrew Cubie and John McCormick whose terms of office are coming to an end. We need new members who are:

  • authoritative leaders in their field, with broad senior experience, perspectives and networks
  • able to engage and challenge constructively across public, private and third sectors
  • sensitive to the context for Edinburgh’s Festivals and their diverse missions

Our new members could come from a range of different backgrounds. We would be particularly interested to hear from people with experience of complex commercial or public sector environments, or who have skills and knowledge at a strategic level in one of more of the following areas: business, education, community engagement, digital transformation, international events/festivals or city development and strategy in the UK or abroad.


The Role 

The Festivals Forum meets three times each year.  There are also smaller task groups convened from time to time between meetings in which independent members may wish to participate if they have a particular interest.  The Independent members also have a key role in providing support and advice to the Chair of the Festivals Forum and to the Director of Festivals Edinburgh.  These positions are not remunerated.


Appointment Process  

If you are interested in contributing as an Independent Member of the Festivals Forum, please send a brief email which outlines your relevant interests and experience  to, with “Festivals Forum Membership” in the subject line of the email.

Or if you would like to arrange an informal conversation about the role with the Chair of the Festivals Forum, Professor Susan Deacon, please contact Vanessa Boyd at or telephone 0131 529 7970.

The new members will be expected to take up their role at the next Festivals Forum meeting on 1 November.

Following a deadline of Friday 16 September, we will review expressions of interest received to date and look to fill our current vacancies. Further expressions of interest are also welcome up until 31 December 2016, as we are always looking to identify supporters for a range of potential future roles.

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