I will address the Senator's last query first. I hope I have already answered the first question.
I believe the composition of the board is excellent. Some members will change in January and some in February. There appears to be a diverse grouping. Several members are from the arts world, which is always important, but we can also draw on legal, organisational, facilities management and philanthropy skills. It is a well balanced board which reflects very well on the system and how it is now structured. Every member had to apply to be on the board. I have served on boards where there have been some surprises. One wondered where some people had come from and after a little analysis, it did not take too long to find out exactly why they were on the board. One wondered why valuable board places were sometimes given to people who had to be carried along. The IMMA board is, however, well balanced and it will be very workable.
Senator Fiach Mac Conghail spoke about legislation and asked about my priorities. I am surprised that the IMMA is not in the same statutory framework as other cultural institutions and this is something about which I would have concerns. The IMMA probably needs a very quick governance review to look at how it might operate a little better. There have been structural changes in the area of human resources in the past couple of years, with which management needs some assistance. The organisation had its budget halved in the past six or seven years and, looking at the numbers, one wonders how it is existing. Great credit is due to the organisation not just for continuing its programmatic work but also for expanding it without the budget required. Clearly, the IMMA is not just working better, it has also set down a marker for how it wants to work in the future, but that does not mean that it should state, "Listen, we are grand, we have enough dough." I do not think that is ever going to work. The organisation needs to make a case to the Government and the Minister and bring forward business cases. The National Library of Ireland became successful at showing clearly through business cases how the taxpayer would clearly benefit. The taxpayer is the ultimate beneficiary. That is often the best way to approach the matter. The IMMA has shown that it can programme using resources from philanthropy and partnerships and that will probably be part of the strategy on which I would like to assist.
There is also a significant business and brand imperative; the organisation probably needs to look at how it can create more value from what it already has. From speaking to the director and knowing what the recruitment plans are, that business and brand imperative is primarily on the commercial side to see how the organisation can leverage its very fine facility and unique position in the arts sector. However, like every institution, one steps back a little and asks, "What is its role?" Going on my most recent experiences in the National Library of Ireland which found that it was not just a library or a repository but that it also had educational, outreach, storage, digitisation and other functions, when one gets under the lid at the IMMA, one realises it also has curatorial, developmental, educational and incubation roles. There is a lot more going on than running just a commercial operation. It is important to find out how all of these things might sit together to create a more effective and enlarged strategic plan. That is what the board should focus on in the next five years.