The Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC) seeks candidates for the position of Regional Arts & Culture Planner to serve as a key member of our Arts & Culture (A&C) Department. The Planner will staff planning projects and research efforts that advance the department’s current priorities: building municipal capacity to work with artists and support the creative and cultural economy, integrating arts and culture into COVID recovery and climate resiliency initiatives, and promoting a more welcoming and inclusive region through arts, culture, and heritage. The planner will have opportunities to manage and staff project work in established work areas and develop new projects in alignment with the department’s priorities and the priorities identified in MetroCommon2050, the regional land use and policy plan.
MAPC is the Regional Planning Agency (RPA) serving the people who live and work in metropolitan Boston. Our mission is to promote smart growth and regional collaboration. We are guided by our regional plan, MetroCommon2050: Shaping the Region Together. MAPC’s staff includes approximately 100 full-time employees located in downtown Boston in a transit-accessible and bike-friendly office.
MAPC has been operating remotely through the pandemic, but people are now beginning to return to the office. We anticipate the office will reopen fully only when the metrics we are following indicate it is safe to do so. At that time, we expect that most staff will be working on a hybrid schedule, combining time in the office with remote work.
MAPC strongly supports the professional development of each and every staff person, believing their growth to be consistent with the best interests of MAPC and the region. We encourage all our staff to develop new ideas to make MAPC’s planning and policy work more relevant and impactful, and to adapt to changing times.
This is an opportunity to work in a dynamic, interdisciplinary, and innovative environment with professionals who are committed to building a more sustainable and equitable future for everyone who lives and works in Greater Boston. For more information about MAPC, MetroCommon2050, please visit www.mapc.org.
About the Department:
The A&C Department is a five-person team of planners and arts & culture staff dedicated to expanding local capacity, supportive policies and investments in arts and culture and to ensuring that cultural inclusion, equity, and justice underpin arts and culture planning and community development. The Planner will report to the Director of Arts & Culture and support work that advances the department’s goal to foster municipal and state planning and policy conditions that enable arts and culture to thrive.
See our website for more information.
Examples of Duties
- Manage and/or staff arts, culture, heritage, and creative economy planning projects in collaboration with fellow MAPC planners, municipalities, and community stakeholders; these projects will include scoping, public engagement, facilitation, event planning, research, writing, as well as designing local zoning, permitting procedures, programs, and funding;
- Implement and expand approaches to cultural inclusion, equity and justice in planning practice, including inclusive engagement strategies, relationship building with artists of color, partnerships with organizations serving communities of color, using storytelling to illuminate injustice, and examining legacies of injustice in planning;
- Design and execute workshops and trainings on arts, culture, heritage, and related topics for planners, community developers, community organizers, volunteer boards and committees, and artists;
- Research to expand and improve the collection and management of arts, culture, and heritage data; and research to improve local and state laws, regulations, policies, and programs that can help arts and culture to thrive;
- Document department projects, tools, and lessons that can be shared on our educational platform, the MAPC Arts & Planning Toolkit, or through the department newsletter;
- Integrate arts and culture into other local and regional planning projects, including the agency’s implementation of MetroCommon2050;
- Expand the visibility and impact of MAPC’s arts and culture planning and creative community development work through attendance and/or presentations at local and regional events and conferences; and
- Conduct other activities as assigned to implement the work plan of the Arts & Culture Department and more broadly, the goals of the MetroCommon2050 regional plan.
Evening events, occasional weekend events, and local travel are a responsibility for this position. MAPC does not require that you have a vehicle; however, you must have a valid driver’s license and/or the ability to arrange transportation to meetings in different parts of the region. MAPC provides support for travel, including a Zipcar account and BlueBikes membership.
Candidates must have a minimum of three years of relevant professional and/or academic experience in any of the following areas: community development, urban studies, city, town, or regional planning, urban design, historic preservation, arts administration, architecture, curation, socially engaged art, public art, or other related disciplines. Preference will be given to candidates whose interests and background combine arts and culture with another area of expertise related to urban planning or community development. Experience working directly with other artists, non-profit organizations, community-based groups, and local government is desired.
Successful candidates for this position will demonstrate all or most of the following:
- Knowledge of or experience with one or more areas of arts and culture practice, such as: arts-based community development, cultural planning, cultural asset mapping, cultural economic development, creative placemaking, historic preservation and heritage, urban design, public art, and/or social practice art/socially engaged art;
- Project management experience, including ability to prepare work plans and budgets, manage project timelines, and produce relevant project content;
- Experience with community engagement, organizing, and/or facilitation and in working effectively with community-based groups, communities of color, and/or artists and arts organizations;
- Experience conducting research in areas that can inform our cultural planning, policy and creative community development practice;
- Entrepreneurial work ethic, strong organizational skills, and attention to detail, including experience undertaking assigned work in a self-directed manner, meeting deadlines and budget limits;
- Strong verbal and written presentation and communications skills, including the ability to articulate planning and policy issues to a wide variety of audiences;
- Ability to work with people in a range of settings, including diverse urban neighborhoods in cities, suburban centers, and/or small or rural communities; and
- Ability to work collaboratively in an interdisciplinary setting with colleagues as well as external partners.
- Experience collecting or working with qualitative or quantitative data, including data collected through participatory action research, ethnographic research, and other methods;
- Skills in graphic design or web design; experience with software and platforms such as WordPress, Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign, or social media platforms;
- Knowledge of federal, state and local land use policy issues, laws, regulations, and programs; and
- Experience interacting with local elected and appointed officials.
Per MAPC COVID-19 Vaccine Policy, the selected candidate is required to be fully COVID-19 vaccinated by the agreed upon start date.
Compensation and Benefits:
The salary ranges from $58,000 to $68,000, depending on qualifications and experience. This is a full-time exempt position. MAPC offers excellent Massachusetts state employee benefits as well as a flexible, supportive, and family-friendly work environment and a commitment to continued professional development.
How to Apply:
Apply online at www.mapc.org/jobs. The position is open until filled, and applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. Interested candidates should submit a cover letter and resume. Candidates selected to interview will be asked to submit three (3) references plus a sample of relevant writing or work product. Candidates must have legal authorization to work in the USA and a valid driver’s license and/or the ability to arrange transportation to meetings in different parts of the region. MAPC participates in E-Verify, which is a federal program that helps us to determine work eligibility in the United States.
MAPC is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer. We believe that a staff with a range of perspectives, experiences, and skillsets strengthens our work. We are committed to building a more equitable workplace that allows staff with diverse backgrounds and identities to thrive, grow, and lead. For more information on MAPC’s culture of equity, see our Equity at MAPC page.