John O’Brien

John O’Brien has 60 shows to his credit as director and has been an Equity member for many years. Following the economic crash in 2008 he took a Masters Degree in Business and Management and completed a dissertation on the economy of the Irish Culture sector. Part of the research involved a survey of actor income from film and TV (including royalty payments) over a ten-year period.

This started a fascination with the Economics of Culture and what it tells us about the wider economy and the politics of market design in particular (a PhD topic he has been developing for many years). Since then, he has worked part-time as a lecturer in UCD Quinn School of Business on the MA in Culture Policy and Arts Management and at Colaiste Dhulaigh on the BA in Drama.

He also advises on policy and strategy in the arts, culture, and creative sector and has completed work for various local authorities and organisations over the years. His most recent gig was RIOT: SLIGO, an online conference for Sligo County Council that brought together international thought leaders on policy, local wealth development, urban planning, economics, arts, culture, festivals to discuss the challenges facing the arts, culture and creative sectors and the ways to develop a sustainable model.  He also completed the only report for equity on how the value of missing royalty payments could be calculated.

Before all this he worked as a producer with Guna Nua Theatre Company, was director of the Riverbank Arts Centre in Newbridge, was founder and Artistic Director of The Crypt Arts Centre in Dublin Castle, artistic director of Íomhá Ildánach Theatre Company. He also spent a number of years in film development. There’s more but that’s most of it. He also blogs extensively on matters of culture policy and economics.