i-Portunus Operational Study

Logo for i-Portunus. Spells out the name and then the dot on the i is the lens of a lighthouse, projecting a bright yellow cone.

Funded by the European Union, i-Portunus was a pilot project to trial a new EU mobility scheme for artists and culture professionals. It was tested in 2019, under the leadership of a consortium led by the Goethe Institut together with the Institut français, Izolyatsia, and Nida Art Colony of Vilnius Academy of Arts.

In the lead-up to the pilot, On the Move was contracted by the consortium to produce an analysis of the mobility field in order to analyse current opportunities and demand, identify shortfalls, and make recommendations for the pilot itself. Working from two surveys, a review of literature and more than 20 interviews, the study was also based on an analysis of funding and calls collected by On the Move in the two years 2017-2018 and an in-depth analysis of the 33 cultural mobility funding guides focused on European countries.

As with all our projects, the i-Portunus study was a joint effort: many members of the network contributed their expertise to the report, gave interviews, or promoted the online surveys (which gathered nearly 3000 responses). Such a broad base of involvement improved the scope of the study, but also prepared the way for a wider shift in policy and understanding within the mobility field.

The final report represents a significant milestone in mobility research that gathers key facts and figures while putting forward an updated definition of cultural mobility as a ‘conscious process’. On the Move was invited by the consortium, led by the Goethe Institut, to present the report’s recommendations within a policy recommendations workshop on 15-16 October 2019. This workshop was also attended by around 20 members of our network who are active as Mobility Info Points, mobility funders, or networks.

The i-Portunus pilot scheme itself ran April-September 2019. Across three calls, it received over 3000 applications from artists and culture professionals in 41 countries. Future calls are planned with two new consortia – check the i-Portunus website for details.