Evaluating Focus on Culture: creative economy for the generation of work and income in a Brazilian poor community

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Colugnati, Fernando Antonio Basile
Sartes, Laisa Marcorela Andreoli
White, Kelley B.
Piazzalunga, Renata
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The project, Focus on Culture, is related to the Sustainable Development Program, conceived by IPTI, entitled The Human Project (http://www.thehumanproject.org.br). The conception of the project parts from the principal that there is a very common characteristic in regions of Brazil with low economic development and where subsistent economies predominate. This characteristic, associated with the absence of a strong economic activity, forms a favorable context for the exploration of experiences related to the development of creative economies. There exists as much hand labor there as the necessity to amplify the work potential and income of this population, and while a craft-art activity is practiced, they don't have the necessary knowledge and information to make developed products that have any added value, and as a result, access to a more ample consumer market. The project is being developed in the county of Santa Luzia do Itanhy, Sergipe, Brazil; with funding from IDB, Inter-american Development Bank, through the FUMIN program. This county is one of poorest of Brazil and it has the second lowest Human Development Indicator rate (0,545) of the state of Sergipe (HDI = 0,731). Among the 5.565 Brazilian counties, it occupies the 5.345 place. The local populations’ economic activity is based on fishing, hand-crafts and sustainable agriculture. More than half of the population depends on governmental social-assistance programs. The population is vulnerable: riverside dwellers, old slave hideouts that became communities (quilombolas) and squatters. The proposed method for developing a model of inclusive enterprise in Santa Luzia do Itanhy came from research on the local material and immaterial regional patrimony and the collection of data relating to the results of indicators and impacts of the project. We have a consistent data bank on the local culture with which we can embark on the interventions to be made through the project and their posterior evaluation based on the analysis of adequate indicators. This paper presents the principal results and impacts parting from the evaluation of those indicators combined to qualitative techniques.
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