No Time to Lose: A Search for Work / Life Balance


CSLS releases study on happiness of Canadians by notimetolose
November 29, 2010, 10:57 am
Filed under: events, ideas, publication | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Notice of Release, November 23, 2010

Does Money Matter? Evidence Shows that Mental and Physical Health, Stress, and Sense of Belonging Trump Income as Determinants of the Happiness of Canadians

The Centre for the Study of Living Standards (CSLS) released today a major study on factors influencing the happiness or life satisfaction of Canadians. The report, prepared in partnership with the Institute for Competitiveness and Prosperity (ICP), was based on data for 70,000 Canadians from Statistics Canada’s Community Health Survey.  It provides a comprehensive analysis of the happiness landscape in Canada, quantifies the many variables that determine happiness, and explains the variation in happiness across provinces, CMAs and health regions.

The key findings of the study are highlighted below.

·         There is relatively little variation in average happiness in Canada both over time and across space. In 2009, 92.1 per cent of the population 12 and over reported that they were either satisfied or very satisfied with their lives, compared to 91.4 per cent in 2008, 91.9 per cent in 2007, 91.8 per cent in 2005, and 91.3 per cent in 2003. Based on a scale of 1 to 5, the average level of happiness of the Canadian population 20 and over in 2007-8 was 4.26.

·         At the provincial level, life satisfaction ranged from a high of 4.33 in Prince Edward Island to a low of 4.23 in Ontario, a total range of 0.10 points (2.5 per cent) out of a potential maximum variation of four points. At the level of the 32 CMAs, average happiness ranged from a high of 4.37 in Sherbrooke, Quebec, to a low of 4.15 in Toronto, Ontario, a range of 0.22 points or 5.5 per cent. At the level of the 121 health regions, average happiness ranged from a high of 4.42 in Kings County, Prince Edward Island to a low of 4.12 in the City of Toronto Health Unit, a range of 0.30 points or 7.5 per cent.

·         A one-unit increase in perceived mental health (measured on a scale from 1 to 5, where 1 is poor mental health and 5 is excellent mental health) raises the proportion of individuals that are very satisfied with life by 17.0 percentage points. Said another way, the effect for the average person of a one-unit increase in mental health on happiness is equivalent to the effect of a 309 per cent increase in household income on happiness.

·         Perceived health status was also an economically significant determinant of happiness. A one-unit increase in health status increases the proportion of individuals that are very satisfied with life by 8.8 percentage points. Such a change is equivalent to a 157 per cent increase in household income.

·         High levels of stress level were associated with lower life satisfaction. Specifically, a one-unit increase in stress (measured on a 5-point scale) decreases the proportion of individuals that are very satisfied by 7.7 percentage points. In terms of household income, this is equivalent to the effect of a 136 per cent decrease on happiness for the average person.

·         An individual’s sense of belonging to their local community was also an important determinant of individual life satisfaction. A one-unit increase in sense of belonging (measured on a 4-point scale) increases the proportion of individuals that are very satisfied with life by 6.5 percentage points. Relative to the effect of household income, such a change is equivalent to a 116 per cent increase in income for the average person.

·         Unemployment had a negative impact on people’s happiness. Relative to household income, moving from unemployment to employment has the same impact on happiness as a 151 per cent increase in income for the average person.

·         Although household income was statistically significant at the one per cent level, it carries less economic significance for happiness than the variables highlighted above. Specifically, a ten per cent increase in household income from the mean increases the proportion of individuals that are very satisfied with life by only 0.6 percentage points.

·         Geographical variation in happiness in Canada arises for two main sources: differences in the means of variables associated with life satisfaction and the importance of those variables in the life satisfaction regressions. Although sense of belonging was not the most economically significant variable in our models of life satisfaction, the variation in this variable across geographical units was quite large and this factor was key to explaining regional differences in happiness.

The report provides strong support for the 2009 Stiglitz report commissioned by French President Nicholas Sarkozy that recommended greater emphasis be placed on happiness relative to GDP in the development of public policy.

To address this emerging issue of the role of happiness in public policy, the CSLS and the ICP are organizing a conference on this topic in Ottawa on December 1, 2010. Speakers include John Helliwell, Don Drummond, Mel Cappe, and Alan Nymark.

The program is posted here. To register, click here.


For additional information, please contact:
Andrew Sharpe
Executive Director
Centre for the Study of Living Standards
111 Sparks Street, Suite 500
Ottawa, Ontario K1P 5B5
613-233-8891
Fax: 613-233-8250
andrew.sharpe@csls.ca
www.csls.ca

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WORK, WORK, WORK – a series of seminars on Art and Labour at Iaspis by notimetolose

This looks great and I’m disappointed I’ll be missing it as I was in Stockholm in October and will be returning in January…

Mladen Stilinović, "Chinese Business," 2009 (detail). Collage.*

The seminar series at Iaspis discusses the image of work, the worker and the workplace in relation to diverse strategies within contemporary art. What roles are played by spatial organisation and activism? What concepts are the descriptions of artistic production and labour framed by? What ideologies are involved in the production of the artistic subject? Is the artist a role model for the contemporary “post-fordian” worker—flexible, creative, adaptable and cheap—a creative entrepreneur within an advanced service economy?

The first seminar treats contemporary and historical images of labour, and reflects on what type of “worker” the artist could be. On the Conditions of Production brings up the organisation of work within the art world. The third seminar discusses what role art can play—politically and socially—in relation to the public realm and spatiality. Artists, curators, activists, architects and researchers are contributing to the seminars.

The program is curated by Michele Masucci (artist), Annika Enqvist, Cecilia Widenheim and Jonatan Habib Engqvist (Iaspis). For further information http://www.iaspis.se

Seminar#1: Representations of Labour
20 November 10 am – 6 pm

What is the image of work? How and by whom has this image been produced? What are the means of production involved in artistic representations of workers, workers movements and the workplace? What are the theoretical and practical challenges in these representations? How is the role of the artist presented and what kind of “worker” is the artist? The seminar addresses what work is and has been through experiences of work and questions concerning migration, economy, class and technology.

Participants include: Annika Eriksson (artist, Berlin), Kirsten Forkert (artist/researcher, London), Ingela Johansson (artist, London), Stefan Jonsson (writer, Stockholm), Maria Lind (curator, Stockholm), Sarat Maharaj (writer, London/Malmö), Pratchaya Phinthong (artist, Bangkok), Joanna Sokolowska (curator, Lodz), Nina Svensson (artist, Stockholm)

Seminar#2: On the Conditions of Production
27 November 2 pm – 6 pm
28 November 10 am – 5 pm

A two day workshop hosted by a research group initiated by BAC (Baltic Art Center) in Visby. What are the general terms of production in society at large? How does economy, cultural politics and media relate to art? What does alienation imply in an increasingly socially oriented production process? What is the distribution of labour within the art world; what are the pros and cons of today’s system? Could one imagine an open working process, independent from predefined expectations? How can one organise a production-based residency today? The Open Call for Contributions aims at opening the ongoing research process and add to the discussion. In order to contribute and participate, please register by email to ontheconditionsofproduction@gmail.com

Participants include: Kajsa Dahlberg (artist, Berlin), Kim Einarsson (director Konsthall C, Stockholm/Berlin), Mattìn (artist, Berlin), Michele Masucci (artist, Stockholm), Lisa Rosendahl (director BAC, Visby/Berlin), Fredrik Svensk (writer and critic, Göteborg), Alexei Penzin (philosopher, Moscow) and contributing practitioners.

Seminar#3: Art for Social and Spatial Change
3 December, 5 – 9 pm
4 December, 10.30 am – 5.30 pm

Two days revolving around the question of what it means to take action today. The conversations include intersectional perspectives on labour and the so-called creative industry. What are our possibilities to act within an artistic practice in social, spatial and political change? In what way are conflicts concerning work expressed in the workspace and in society? How is public space staged in the private? How can emancipatory political projects such as the feminist and queer movements separate themselves from an increasing commodification of political and social subjects? Is it possible to imagine a “movement” in the sense of a collective process of the transformation of reality today?

Participants include: Lars Bang Larsen (writer and curator, Barcelona), Franco Berardi (researcher, Bolongna), Ana Betancour (professor architecture, Göteborg), Catharina Gabrielsson (architect and reseacher, Stockholm), Helena Mattsson (ass. professor and architect, Stockholm), Raqs Media Collective (artists and activists, New Dehli), Nina Power (researcher, Roehampton) and Judith Revel (philosopher, Paris) among others.

On display, “Chinese Business” by Mladen Stilinović (Iaspis, 2009)

The series takes place at Iaspis in relation to the exhibition Image at Work produced
by XpoSeptember in collaboration with Index, The Romanian Culture Institute and Moderna Museet.

Iaspis, Swedish Arts Grants Committee
Maria skolgata 83, 2nd floor
Stockholm, Sweden
http://www.iaspis



“MASHING UP” : Art+Labour … a public conversation by notimetolose
October 19, 2010, 10:03 am
Filed under: activism, events | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“MASHING UP” :
Art+Labour
a public conversation

CCA 5
Tue 9th Nov 2010
12.30-6pm

Art+Labour is a public conversation exploring the conditions and experiences of creative labour in the cultural industries – working conditions, pay, working hours; freedom and autonomy, pleasure and obligation; insecurity and uncertainty; social reproduction, networking and isolation – and artists’ organising within it – unions, artists’ associations, or self-organised studio/exhibition spaces.

What diverse forms of employment do artists undertake? Who are their employees? How secure and how flexible are these forms of employment? What are the conditions of employment and how are these changing? What can we say of artists’ autonomy in relation to contemporary labour practices? How do cultural workers effectively organise around labour issues? What would it mean for artists to withdraw their labour in defence of conditions in one’s primary or secondary employment? With successive governments’ emphasis on arts’ social function, how does communality express itself in competitive Creative Industries? What is industrial about the Creative Industries; where do ‘Cultural’ producers sit within the policy frame of the ‘Creative’ Industries? How do we as cultural producers recognise our own positions and dependency on/within/alongside the public sector? With the entrepreneurial restructuring of the arts in Scotland and in the face of selective public sector cuts throughout the UK, how constructive are artists’ isolated appeals for a state of exception? What is so unique about artists in the social factory?

These are some of the questions to be addressed during this public conversation. The discussion is open to anyone – cultural workers, artists, students, interns, precarious and self-organised labour affiliated to academia – concerned with issues of art, labour and economics. The event will begin with a series of short position statements from invited speakers followed by discussion among panelists and audience.

Panelists include:

  • Angela McRobbie
    Professor of Communications, Dept. of Media & Communications, Goldsmiths
  • Scottish Artists Union
    The representative voice for artists in Scotland
  • Graham Jeffery
    Reader: Music and Performance, The School of Creative and Cultural Industries, UWS
  • Katarzyna Kosmala
    Reader, Centre for Contemporary European Studies, UWS
  • Gesa Helms
    Researcher & artist
  • Brett Bloom
    Member of Chicago-based art collective Temporary Services who recently produced ‘Art Work : A national conversation about art, labour, and economics’
  • Owen Logan
    Researcher, School of Divinity, History and Philosophy, University of Aberdeen
  • Facilitated by Gordon Asher
    Effective Learning Tutor, UWS Centre for Academic & Professional Development

Event is free but ticketed, tickets available from CCA Box Office:
CCA, 350 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow G2 3JD
tel : +44 (0)141 352 4900
http://www.cca-glasgow.com



Latest links by notimetolose

Since concern about work/life balance — rather the growing lack of it! — seems to have only grown since NTTL was presented at Peacock Visual Arts in 2008, I’ve decided to continue posting links and other information here as part of an ongoing commitment to this project.

Here are a few items that have come up recently, that I’d like to add…

1) Another exhibition

Workers Leaving the Workplace exhibition curated by Joanna Sokolowska– Muzeum Sztuki in Lodz – 06.07 – 05.09.2010

The point of departure for the exhibition are contemporary changes of labour and production referred to by researches as „post-fordism” and connected with the development of the global information society and economy based on services and knowledge. This model of economy has extended the traditional borders of productivity by a complex and diverse set of social, intellectual, emotional and communicative processes, thus leading to engagement of workers` and consumers` subjectivity into cycles of production and reproduction of capital beyond fixed hierarchies and categories. Labour viewed from this perspective becomes biopolitics: management of life, creating its new forms. Productivity enters areas it used to be separated from: these of free time, entertainment, aesthetic experiences, social involvement, political action and housework. The requirements of constant efficiency, self-education and flexibility in adjusting to the constantly changing conditions also known today as self-improvement have caused us not to cease producing capital even after leaving our workplace.

The exhibition will debate three main intertwining themes: industrial labour, broadened and hybrid character of contemporary productivity, an artist‘s work and economy. The works focused on industry or its remnants will examine labour processes connected to the factory incorporated into immaterial flows of meaning, that determine in fact entire production cycles. The artists who position labour within the wide field of social and generic activities will particularly concentrate on an ambivalent, flexible and elusive dimension of work today, which often makes the worker function on the verge between self-realization and (self)exploitation. To what extent are the artistic practices – operating with and reprocessing after all images and meanings – reliant on the current transformations of capitalism? What kind of economies might be conceived by the artists, what is their potential to break away from the dominant modes of production?

In relation to the exhibition two new works are being prepared: Janek Simon’s project at Alaba International Market in Nigeria and “The History of the Bomb” by Roman Dziadkiewicz

The Workers Leaving the Workplace project further develops some questions raised by the exhibition Arbeiter verlassen die Arbeitsstätte at the Galerie für Zeitgenőssische Kunst in Leipzig in 2009.

Artists: Joseph Beuys, Rafał Bujnowski, Roman Dziadkiewicz, Miklós Erhardt, Harun Farocki, Aleksandar Batista Ilić (in collaboration with Ivana Keser and Tomislave Gotovac) Kristina Inčiūraitė, Piotr Jaros, Ali Kazma, Jean-Luc Moulène, Frédéric Moser & Philippe Schwinger, Peter Piller, Martha Rosler, Mika Rottenberg, Janek Simon, Škart, Mladen Stilinović, Mona Vătămanu & Florin, Tudor, Ingo Vetter, Haegue Yang, Artur Żmijewski

For more information, contact: Joanna Sokolowska — j.sokolowska@msl.org.pl — or visit http://www.msl.org.pl/


2) Creepy news that is not about being flexible but rather about justifying cuts to social security

“British should set their own retirement age”, The Times (UK) via eurotopics

The British government plans to prevent employers from retiring employees aged 65 who want to go on working. The daily The Times is delighted: “In earlier decades, when employment was dominated by manufacturing, workers were a drag on productivity as they became physically weaker. But in an economy characterised by the provision of services and the application of knowledge, older workers contribute far more. A default retirement age is neither a boon to them nor a way of improving the productivity of the workforce. On the contrary, it adds to one burden that an ageing society does impose, namely the expanding costs of pension provision. The proposal to abolish the DRA would ameliorate that problem by its symbolism. In indicating that older workers have an important contribution to the world of work, the Government may persuade many of them to stay within it. They will pay taxes as well as draw pensions.” (30/07/2010)

3) Omega Interventions: Burnout-Performance

For more info, visit: http://www.rebelart.net/diary/omega-interventions-burnout-performance/005820/

4) They don’t because they can’t…

Canadians not using their vacation time
Talbot Boggs, The Canadian Press
(Special) – Canadians aren’t getting enough – vacations that is.

“A new Harris/Decima poll has found that although Canadian workers have an average of 19.68 days a year off, almost one quarter don’t use all their vacation time and give back an average of 2.17 days.

The most common reasons Canadians give for not using their full vacation time include not scheduling their vacation well enough in advance, they are too busy to get away or their significant others are not able to get away from their jobs.”

Read more: http://finance.sympatico.ca/home/canadians_not_using_their_vacation_time_/125050dd



Economist Debates: “This house believes that Europeans would be better off with fewer holidays and higher incomes” by notimetolose
December 23, 2009, 2:07 pm
Filed under: events, ideas, interactive | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Oh really? Well, that’s quite an interesting point from which to commence a debate on this subject.

Click here to read Professor Robert J. Gordon’s defence of this motion and  John de Graaf’s rebuttal. John O’Sullivan moderates and citizens of the interwebs are welcome to contribute their comments, as well.

As of day two, 18% of people logging in to The Economist’s website have voted in favour of the motion, and 82% have voted in opposition. Gee… I can’t really say I’m surprised 😉

Check it out! http://www.economist.com/debate/overview/160



What is the good of work? by notimetolose
October 19, 2009, 1:32 am
Filed under: events, ideas, interactive | Tags: , , , ,

Reposted from e-flux via CCS Bard…

A series of talks…

Wyoming Evenings: What is the Good of Work? (1/4)

What is the good of work? How and why did the sixties and seventies vision of a future defined by leisure change into the reality of an exhausting life of increasingly purposeless work? What are the implications of the shift from a Fordist model of production to a post-Fordist one? Why is work valorized in contemporary society? What happened to the radical potential of labor? What can we learn by examining its various critiques, from those expressed in the Middle Ages and up through the strategies employed by the Situationists and others? Unemployment is becoming a reality for an increasing number of people. How might we think of unemployment as an artistic and philosophical category?

These questions will be examined during four events at the Goethe-Institut Wyoming Building in the East Village. Each event will involve two guests–one artist and one cultural producer of another kind. Marysia Lewandowska and Peter Fleming will be the guests at the first event on October 17, 2009.

Marysia Lewandowska is a Polish-born, London-based artist and a Professor at Konstfack Stockholm. Her past and current projects reflect the ways in which institutions determine the exchange of values between art and its publics. She is currently developing Women’s Audio Archive as part of her residency at the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College (CCS Bard) in Annandale-on-Hudson, NY.

Peter Fleming is professor of Work, Organization and Society at the Queen Mary College (University of London). One of his areas of research concerns the cultural politics of work organizations and the modes of ideological control that operate to enlist the participation of labor.

Events to follow in this series:

December 5th, 2009. 4pm
Marion von Osten and Tom McCarthy

January 30th, 2010. 4pm
Liam Gillick and Gianni Vattimo

March 13th, 2010. 4pm
Carles Guerra and Michael Hardt

For more information: http://www.bard.edu/ccs/exhibitions/sites/exhibition.php?g=680534&type=1