Arts Research Monitor articles, category = Other topics

This report highlights the result of a survey of the digital marketing practices of 125 performing arts organizations in the United States. Theatres (41%) and presenting organizations (27%) accounted for over two-thirds of the respondents. As noted in the report, “125+ organizations do not make this data statistically significant”. Nevertheless, there are some interesting findings regarding the digital marketing of performing arts organizations.

A Critical Role for Grantmakers

Based on a literature review, exploratory interviews with arts organization leaders, a review of grantmakers’ practices, and the author’s experience, this article argues that “arts organizations must become knowledge-centric, by using knowledge to advance their missions and goals, gathering and leveraging disparate data and information, and creating a culture where knowledge is a core value”.

Enhancing governance and effectiveness

This document from Imagine Canada, the national association of charities, is intended to support charitable organizations by providing a “Canada-wide set of shared standards for charities and nonprofits designed to strengthen their capacity in five fundamental areas: board governance; financial accountability & transparency; fundraising; staff management; and volunteer involvement.”

This report provides “evidence-based insights into the health of U.S. arts and cultural organizations”, based on more than 55,000 arts and cultural organizations. The report is very detailed, with data related to 128 indices and in-depth reporting on 26 indices.

This brief report highlights the fact that cultural practices are important for “the wellness, health, and healing of Aboriginal peoples and communities”. The report indicates that the arts may have particular importance for Aboriginal Peoples in many ways.

Based on a “nationally representative” online survey of just over 2,000 United Kingdom residents 16 or older, this report attempts to provide “detailed insights into the behaviour of arts and culture fans, their participation and attendance and how they consume content”. Overall, 89% of U.K. residents indicated that they have some interest in the arts, compared with 83% with some interest in sports. When asked whether they consider themselves an “arty person” or a “sporty person”, more U.K. residents chose arty (43%) than sporty (38%).

Hotbeds of America’s Arts and Culture

The Arts Vibrancy Index attempts to identify cities that possess artistic vibrancy, which is defined to include per-capita measures of arts supply, arts providers, and government grant activity in the arts. The highest rankings among the largest cities (population of 1 million or more) went to the metropolitan areas of Washington (D.C.), Nashville, New York, Boston, and San Francisco. Among cities with a population under 1 million, three of the top five cities were in Colorado: Glenwood Springs (#1), Breckenridge (#4), and Edwards (#5). Rounding out the top five were Santa Fe (New Mexico) and Jackson (Wyoming, including parts of Idaho).

Based on a survey of 4,026 Americans 18 years of age or over, Culture Track 2014 examines cultural attendance as well as the attitudes, motivations, and behaviours of “culturally-active audiences” in an attempt to “understand what’s really driving or discouraging cultural participation”. Between a similar 2011 survey and the 2014 iteration, there was an increase in the percentage of Americans participating at least once a year in many art forms (including four types of museums, musical theatre, and classical music), but there were some decreases (including drama, classical dance, modern dance, and opera). The survey found that the frequency of participation has decreased over time, which the survey attributes to a lingering “effect of the economic downturn”. The report indicates that “cultural audiences are seeking both entertainment and enlightenment”.

Canada Dance Mapping Study

This large-scale survey, completed by 8,124 Canadians 16 or older, aimed to develop “a better understanding of who dances in Canada, where they dance, and why”. The majority of survey respondents were identified as “leisure dance participants” (5,948, or 73%), with the remaining 2,176 respondents (or 27%) being dance professionals. Respondents identified 190 different dance forms in which they participate.

New Models in Use by Theatre Artists, Groups and Organizations

In a situation where “the growth in the number of artists attempting to start new [theatre] companies [exceeds] the growth in the funding available”, this report, based on a review of relevant and recent Canadian reports, attempts to identify “key practices, approaches or models that theatre artists, groups and organizations are implementing or adapting to ensure their art-making is viable and thriving”.