Book on how to enable cultural workers to build 
sustainable working environments

How do we keep our spark alive working in independent cultural centres? The penguin project develops ideas, tools and methods to help cultural workers answer that question for themselves.

The penguin project started in June 2019 at the TEH meeting in Dresden. It is led by Die Bäckerei – Kulturbackstube and the Trans Europe Halles (TEH) coordination office. Die Bäckerei provides the research expertise and working power; TEH provides the administrative expertise and the budget via Factories of Imagination part 3 (until Sept 2021).

How you experience your working reality – whether something inspires you or drains you – depends on the outside world on the one hand, your working context, or “the system”. And on the other hand, it depends on your frame of reference, how you interpret and make sense of your context. Both external context and internal interpretation mutually influence each other over time.

The question is – which side should we focus on?
When we look at the working context of cultural workers, there seem to be a million factors that influence their spark. The organisational structure of the centre, leadership style, financial stability, age of the centre, personality structure, identification with the centre’s purpose, and so on. Moreover, every cultural centre is situated in a different socio-political context. So, how can we find a way to support cultural workers to keep their spark alive that works regardless of the context?

Find out ideas, tools and methods to help cultural workers of independent cultural centres to stay motivated and avoid a burnout in the Penguin project’s book. 



(penguin_book_spread.pdf - 26.83 Mb)