This partnership, which aims to hone the skills of future leaders of arts institutions worldwide, is the only initiative of its kind.
Starting in fall 2009, students will earn both a master's degree in arts management from IMCE and a master's degree in innovation and organization of culture and the arts from the University of Bologna's School of Economics. To complete, the program will take between 28 and 30 months, or six academic terms — with classes held in Bologna and Pittsburgh.
"We have been exchanging students and faculty between our two programs for several years now with much success and positive feedback," said Luca Zan, president of the University of Bologna's Graduate Degree of Innovation and Organization of Culture and the Arts (GIOCA). "This inspired us to consider a more expansive collaborative educational framework that seems to be vital now in this global marketplace."
Jerry Coltin, director of Carnegie Mellon's Master of Arts Management (MAM) program agreed.
"The program combines the strengths of Carnegie Mellon's rigorous approach — focused on applied management theory and skills — with the University of Bologna's interdisciplinary approach that allows students to understand global operational issues as they relate to the artistic dimensions of cultural institutions," said Coltin.
He also noted, "These two highly credible academic programs combined into one educational experience cannot be found anywhere else."
The highly innovative, internationally focused double-degree program speaks volumes about where cultural management has migrated. For centuries, the arts and culture industry has served as an economic driver in cities across the globe. But only in the last 50 years has management of these institutions emerged as a respected professional management career track.
The globalization of the cultural industries has exacerbated the challenges.
"Students in this program will be exposed to a more diverse set of management practices and, most certainly, a larger context for the work," said Dan Martin, IMCE director and associate professor. "Today's managers must be able to function globally, understanding the processes and practices across different societies."