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Education Master's and PhD degree programmes Arts & Culture - Research Cultural Leadership - Research
Header image Cultural Leadership

Cultural Leadership

Culture and heritage are the sinews of a society. In an era marked by rapid change, ambitious and critical cultural leaders are required to foster the cultural core of a sustainable society.

Culture defines humanity. Managing the valuation and transmission of culture through policy, entrepreneurship, and education across generations is therefore a key responsibility for a sustainable society. In our modern society, culture has to be negotiated as it is shaped by digitisation and new media, ethnic and cultural diversity, changing audiences and economic circumstances, dwindling public funds, and a loss of shared historical awareness. The mission of the Research Master's track Cultural Leadership is to train its students to conduct academic research into processes of cultural leadership. We equip them with essential scholarly expertise as well as analytical and strategic skills, so that they may carry culture forward in a critical, sustainable, and creative manner, and ultimately become cultural leaders themselves.

In order to broaden our students’ outlook on their own cultures and provide them with the opportunity to exchange ideas with peers, we have joined forces with Roma Tre University. Students spend the second semester of the first year in Rome. This period ends with a Spring School at the Royal Netherlands Institute in Rome (KNIR).

Facts & Figures
Degree
MA in Arts & Culture (research)
Course type
Research master
Duration
24 months (120 ECTS)
Croho code
60829
Language of instruction
English
Start
September
Faculty
Arts
Why study this programme in Groningen?

The programme's broad definition of cultural leadership and its multidisciplinary set-up distinguishes it from programmes offered elsewhere in the Netherlands and abroad that only deal with specific areas of culture as well as from programmes that primarily address the organisational and managerial aspects of the cultural field. We offer small-scale intensive education in which discussion, forming and voicing your own informed opinion play a significant role.

Programme

In their first year students do course work.

The first semester is taught in Groningen. Students do one or two disciplinary electives (10 ECTS in total) depending on their BA-degree and further interests. They also follow the Cultural Leadership course plus Theories of Culture and Research and Public Cultural Policy in Global Context.

The second semester is taught in Groningen, or students can decide to go abroad, for example to Rome where we collaborate with Roma Tre University. Students do one or more disciplinary electives (15 ECTS in total), again depending on their BA-degree and further interests. They also follow the courses Arts and Media in Society and Leadership, Personal Leadership and Organizational Development if they stay in Groningen. Abroad they can replace the first of these courses with other options, at Roma Tre University courses in Heritage, Media and Sustainability.

Semesters
CoursesCourse Catalog >1a1b2a2b
Theories of Culture and Research (5 EC)
Cultural Leadership (10 EC)
Disciplinary electives (Groningen) (10 EC)
Public Arts Policy in Global Context (Groningen) (5 EC)
Disciplinary electives (Rome) (15 EC)
Heritage (Rome) (5 EC)
Media (Rome) (5 EC)
Sustainability & Cultural Awareness (Rome) (5 EC)

In their second year students do a research traineeship and write their thesis.

In the third semester students design their thesis research and start their six-month research traineeship with a cultural institution (in the Netherlands or abroad). In January they will participate in a two-day Winter School in Groningen related to the research project carried out at their host institution.

In the fourth semester they finish their traineeship and write their thesis.

Semesters
CoursesCourse Catalog >1a1b2a2b
Thesis preparation, including Methodology class (15 EC)
Research Traineeship, including Winter School (Groningen) (30 EC)
Thesis writing (15 EC)

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is required
  • For an average of 24 weeks
  • Maximum of 30 EC

All students spend the second semester of the first year in Rome, where they do course work at Roma Tre University and participate in a Spring School at the Royal Netherlands Institute in Rome (KNIR). In the second year, a number of research traineeships are offered by partner institutions outside the Netherlands.

Entry requirements

Transfer options

Transferring from...

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
Minorities & MultilingualismUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Arts, Culture and MediaUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

HistoryUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

ArchaeologyUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Art HistoryUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Media StudiesUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

English Language and CultureUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

European Languages and CulturesUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Religious StudiesUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Liberal Arts and SciencesUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
ArchaeologyAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

History (part-time)All Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

European Languages and CulturesAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Media StudiesAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure

English Language and CultureAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Arts, Culture and MediaAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Art HistoryAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Minorities & MultilingualismAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Religious StudiesAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Liberal Arts and SciencesAll Research universities

Additional requirements

More information:

This programme has a selection procedure.

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
previous education

Prospective students are required to have knowledge at Bachelor's level of any humanities discipline or discipline relevant to leadership in the cultural domain. Examples of these types of Bachelor's programmes are:

  • Archaeology
  • History
  • Language and Culture Studies
  • Arts and Culture Studies
  • Media Studies
  • Minorities and Multilingualism
  • Religious Studies
  • Social Sciences, Business Administration, or International Organizations if students demonstrate a clear affinity with, and knowledge of, the arts and humanities
grade list

An excellent academic record: An overview of the results achieved so far within the Bachelor's degree programme and/or other university degree programmes is required.

Curriculum Vitae (CV)

A Curriculum Vitae (CV)

language test

Additional English language requirement: A VWO diploma or a subject certificate for VWO English (mark 6 or higher), minimum requirement of TOEFL iBT 100 (with a minimum score for speaking and writing of 25 (each)), or an IELTS score of 7 (with a minimum of 6.5 on all items). Cambridge C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency with a minimum score of 185.

reference letter

Two personal letters of recommendation from staff members who can comment on the students' affinity with and capacities for research.

(motivation-) letter

A letter outlining the prospective student's motivation for selecting the programme and Research Master's track, including their expectations and interests.

Registration procedure

NB. We strongly advice you to start the programme in September. For more information, please contact the study advisor.

Selection procedure

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202401 September 2024
01 May 202501 September 2025
EU/EEA students01 May 202401 September 2024
01 May 202501 September 2025
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202401 September 2024
01 May 202501 September 2025

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
previous education

Prospective students are required to have knowledge at Bachelor's level of any humanities discipline or discipline relevant to leadership in the cultural domain. Examples of these types of Bachelor's programmes are:

  • Archaeology
  • History
  • Language and Culture Studies
  • Arts and Culture Studies
  • Media Studies
  • Minorities and Multilingualism
  • Religious Studies
  • Social Sciences, Business Administration, or International Organizations if students demonstrate a clear affinity with, and knowledge of, the arts and humanities
grade list

An excellent academic record: An overview of the results achieved so far within the Bachelor's degree programme and/or other university degree programmes is required

Curriculum Vitae (CV)

A Curriculum Vitae (CV)

language test

Additional requirements English: A VWO diploma or a subject certificate for VWO English (mark 6 or higher), minimum requirement of TOEFL iBT 100 (with a minimum score for speaking and writing of 25 (each)), or an IELTS score of 7 (with a minimum of 6.5 on all items). Cambridge C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency with a minimum score of 185.

reference letter

Two personal letters of recommendation from staff members who can comment on the students' affinity with and capacities for research

(motivation-) letter

A letter outlining the prospective student's motivation for selecting the programme and Research Master's track, including their expectations and interests.

Registration procedure

NB. We strongly advice you to start the programme in September. For more information, please contact the study advisor.

Selection procedure

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202401 September 2024
01 May 202501 September 2025
EU/EEA students01 May 202401 September 2024
01 May 202501 September 2025
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202401 September 2024
01 May 202501 September 2025
Tuition fees
NationalityYearFeeProgramme form
EU/EEA2023-2024€ 2314full-time
non-EU/EEA2023-2024€ 16000full-time
EU/EEA2024-2025€ 2530full-time
non-EU/EEA2024-2025€ 18700full-time

Practical information for:

After your studies

Job prospects

Cultural Leadership graduates find jobs as:

  • cultural entrepreneurs, designing, promoting, and organizing cultural events on a variety of scales: from (inter)national festivals to regional and local projects;
  • cultural administrators, policy makers, and educators, working on different levels of government, public foundations, and pedagogical institutions;
  • cultural media critics, working in print, audio visual, and electronic media.
Research

The research master offers the possibility to contribute to an international research agenda on the topic of cultural leadership. Our research programme identifies cultural leadership as any cultural practice creating or strengthening interactions between the arts and societal debates in a local, national, or transnational context.

We encourage transdisciplinary research on cultural leadership, exploring and including perspectives from Archaeology, History, Language and Culture, and Arts and Culture studies. We employ analytical, critical, and cognitive perspectives.

Some research themes are:

  • Film and the mediation of global and local cultural values;
  • Heritage, urban development, and public space;
  • Arts and cultural heritage education;
  • Cultural leadership practice in a globalised participatory culture;
  • Developing new perspectives on cultural leadership’s impact on society;
  • Cultural leadership and the critical mediation of transnational discourses and local cultural identity;
  • The common as space for cultural policy design;
  • Organisational aspects of leadership such as entrepreneurial agency, strategy, and mediation.
Apply nowBrochureEventsContact

Contact

  • Ask Your Question Here (please fill in this contact form, we will answer you as soon as possible.)
  • Dr. Sara Strandvad (Programme Coordinator)
    Email: s.m.strandvad rug.nl
  • Caroline Dijkema (Study Advisor)
    Email: rema.arts.culture.advice rug.nl
  • Mireya Harmsen MA (coordinator: for all questions regarding application)
    Email: rema.arts rug.nl

'We urgently need a new generation of cultural leaders'

“As digital archives are growing and innovative tools are being developed to provide new forms of access, we urgently need a new generation of cultural leaders with a novel vision on how to research and re-use the digitized treasures of the past.”

Giovanna Fossati is Head Curator EYE Film Institute Netherlands (Amsterdam) and author of From Grain to Pixel: The Archival Life of Film in Transition (2009).

Read more

“For me this is an ideal combination of studying both art objects and the sector that surrounds it.”

“The main reason for me to come to Groningen was the unique program of this research master: even though the majority of the courses discuss topics related to cultural leadership, there is plenty of space to further explore your own field as well. For me this is an ideal combination of studying both art objects and the sector that surrounds it.

I think these two aspects together will also form a solid base for the internship in the second year. And of course there is the exchange programme with Roma Tre and the Spring School at KNIR, which is really exciting.”

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“This research master is for people who have the ambition to go beyond the “normal” activities within a cultural organization.”

“This research master is for people who have the ambition to go beyond the “normal” activities within a cultural organization, and want to explore how cultural leaders within organizations can be placed, what these leaders do and how they need to act in order to get things done. Eventually, you might have the ambition to become one yourself.

Furthermore, the programme is quite broad and my fellow students all come from different backgrounds (arts and culture; media; history; art history; language studies; sociology). Therefore the discussions in class are fruitful and full of disagreements and opinions.”

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“Leadership is curious, responsive and reflective - it recognizes patterns and sees connections and acts and engages on multiple levels.”

“Leadership is recognising what you do not know – what perspectives can be brought to the table to bring knowledge that you do not have – it is open, inclusive and values and respects all perspectives equally. Leadership brokers knowledge – it is always learning and co-learning, rather than being the font of all wisdom. Leadership is curious, responsive and reflective - it recognizes patterns and sees connections and acts and engages on multiple levels.”

Katherine Watson - former Director, European Cultural Foundation and Cultural Leader in Residence, Research Master Cultural Leadership

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Winter School 2021

Sketch note made by: Pictocorder – Graphic Recording

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Cooperative endeavour

The master Cultural Leadership is a cooperative endeavour of several departments within the Faculty of Arts of the University of Groningen. Its teaching staff includes professors from Roma Tre, our Italian partner university, and Katherine Watson, our Cultural Leader in Residence.

Staff





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Orange Tulip Scholarship & Holland Scholarship

Orange Tulip Scholarship / Talent grant Faculty of Arts

Are you a non-EU/EEA student from Russia, India or Indonesia, starting a Master's programme at the Faculty of Arts? If so, you could qualify for the University of Groningen OTS/Talent Grant, Faculty of Arts, a partial scholarship which helps you to finance your studies.

Read more about the OTS/Talent Grant Faculty of Arts.

Holland Scholarship

Are you an international student from a non EU/EEA member state starting a Research Master's programme or Erasmus Mundus Master's programme at the Faculty of Arts? If so, you could qualify for the Holland Scholarship, a partial scholarship which helps you to finance your studies. Read more on the Holland Scholarship.

Wondering which other grants might be available for you? Please take a look at our Grant Finder.

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Study associations

Synthesis

Synthesis is the new study association for all Research Master students from the Faculty of Arts. Synthesis is both a social network and a platform for the academic development of young scholars. Given our shared interest in academic research, Synthesis organizes a variety of seminars, lectures and workshops about academic skills or career strategy with interesting speakers from different fields.
Synthesis also aims to create and maintain an active Research Master community by organizing social activities such as drinks, dinners and fun trips. Join our Facebook group for more information.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/468316950175210/
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Study support

If you have any questions or doubts about your studies, you can always contact the study advisor. He or she knows all the ins and outs of the program and personal planning. Study advisors are impartial and everything that is discussed is treated confidentially. They can also help you find the right institutions and student desks for your problems..