Monthly Archives: January 2016

Prof. Jessica McGaugh wins Silver Award from 2015 Spotlight Documentary Film Awards

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CU Denver’s Jessica McGaugh received an international award for her documentary The Creative Method
(27m, U S A)

Jessica McGaugh
Jessica McGaugh

The 2015 Spotlight Documentary Film Awards is proud to have awarded nearly 250 films from over 40 countries: Antarctica, Aruba, Australia, Belarus, Belgium, Bhutan, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Czech Republic, Cuba, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, French Polynesia, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Lebanon, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Panama, Philippines, Poland, Qatar, Russian Federation, Sierra Leone, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sudan, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and USA. Congratulations to all the award-winning filmmakers!

Platinum Awards: ​celebrate truly remarkable films with the highest scores from our panel.
Gold Awards: celebrate incredible films with the second highest scores from our panel.
Silver Awards: awarded to unforgettable films with the third highest scores from our panel.

NYT Essay by LEON WIESELTIER on culture and the misguided use of big data

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An excerpt from this essay:

“Meanwhile the discussion of culture is being steadily absorbed into the discussion of business. There are “metrics” for phenomena that cannot be metrically measured. Numerical values are assigned to things that cannot be captured by numbers. Economic concepts go rampaging through noneconomic realms: Economists are our experts on happiness! Where wisdom once was, quantification will now be. Quantification is the most overwhelming influence upon the contemporary American understanding of, well, everything. It is enabled by the idolatry of data, which has itself been enabled by the almost unimaginable data-generating capabilities of the new technology.”


Leaders of several college music units will be gathering in Dallas to address the “quantification of culture and creativity” (my words) this month:

Many college and university-level music units, as well as units in the other arts, have been challenged and even damaged by the demands made from central administrations and external forces for data-based assessments and comparisons. The purpose of the Summit is to develop an approach alternative to such sources as Academic Analytics, which does not purport to evaluate performing arts, even though they provide analyses of non-performance, non-creative aspects of arts units. The Summit will lay the groundwork for providing valid bases of evaluation that can be nationally benchmarked.