Creative Strategies Initiative

The Creative Strategies Initiative (CSI) builds City employees' capacity for transformational, anti-racist organizing in our City work. Racial and social justice requires us to be relational, creative, adaptive and attuned to the interconnection of all living systems. CSI projects position artists, cultural organizers, and healers as designers and facilitators of strategies that interrupt the system and culture of white supremacy. Projects use arts, culture, mindfulness, and embodiment to approach issues holistically, break down silos, amplify connections, and cultivate a culture of belonging.

CSI projects include:

  • Policy processes
  • Learning cohorts and communities of practice
  • New frameworks and tools
  • Community engagement integrated with arts and culture  

CSI is a component of the Race and Social Justice Initiative's culture shift strategy and the outgrowth of a partnership between the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS) and Seattle Office for Civil Rights (SOCR). Each CSI project is a partnership with ARTS, SOCR, and one or more departments. 

CSI projects have included a range of issue areas, City departments, and strategies:


Turning Commitment into Action

Cover of the report: people in a circle holding a strand of yarn that creates a web between them.

How Creative Strategies Can Build Relationships and Awareness within Racial Equity Learning Cohorts Focused on Environmental Justice

By Mytoan Nguyen-Akbar and Diana Dvora Falchuk


As government budgets continue to tighten and jurisdictions such as Seattle stare down enormous deficits in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, anti-racism efforts must remain at the forefront of all that government does. The last two decades have shifted government actions toward seeking racially equitable outcomes, but our civic institutions still have a long way to go in becoming anti-racist. Today, government must deepen and expand its commitment to anti-racist practices, processes, outcomes, and culture.

Turning Commitment into Action for Environmental Justice formed to better align policy influencers with the leadership of people of color, Indigenous people, and immigrants who are most affected by environmental injustices.

By integrating arts, culture, mindfulness, and embodiment activities, racial equity learning cohorts can help to build the networks and relationships needed to tackle society’s most pressing problems. Read the report.

Arts & Culture

Gülgün Kayim, Director
Address: 303 S. Jackson Street, Top Floor, Seattle, WA , 98104
Mailing Address: PO Box 94748, Seattle, WA , 98124-4748
Phone: (206) 684-7171
Fax: (206) 684-7172

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The Office of Arts & Culture promotes the value of arts and culture in, and of, communities throughout Seattle. It strives to ensure that a wide range of high-quality artistic experiences are available to everyone, encourage artist-friendly arts and cultural policy.