Home Institution

University of Rochester

Publication Date

Fall 2004

Program Name

Czech Republic: Arts, Community, and Transition


Global doctrines on sustainable development emphasize public participation as a tenet of environmentally responsible development. Given the Czech government’s tepid stance towards implementing sustainability measures, much impetus for realizing them will have to come from other facets of Czech society, including the public. In spite of the nearly populist feel of a mounting environmental movement in the late 1980s, after the Velvet Revolution the Czech public remained relatively disengaged from environmental involvement. Traditional decision-making venues within the Czech Republic now actively exclude the public from participating, while other pressures stemming from history and present also diminish the public impetus for becoming involved. Four case studies of art are explored as potential, nontraditional methods to empower and engage the public in environmental dialogues. Findings suggest that art has the best potential to catalyze public engagement when that art is incorporated within a larger, bottom-up strategy aimed at promoting public participation.


Art Practice | Natural Resources and Conservation


Article Location