This section contains research that generates ‘insights’ to inform work in arts and culture settings. The summaries in this section are designed to help inform the decisions arts and cultural organisations have to make, whether that’s developing a new marketing campaign, a new programme of work or making strategic plans for the future.

This section is divided into the following categories:

consumer behaviour


developing new audiences

live and digital engagement

models of community engagement

organisational change

partnerships and collaboration

The summaries in this category are:

The role of the family in shaping adolescent cultural engagement

This research was conducted by Mart Willekens and John Lievens at Ghent University, Belgium


This paper looked at how household structure and parental behaviour affected the cultural lives of children, specifically engagement in the visual arts, heritage or pop and rock music. While it might seem tempting to assume that …

By | 5 May 2015 |

How seasonality and segmentation affect the demand for live theatre

This research was conducted by Jonathan Corning and Armando Levy at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, USA.


This study took box office data from three venues used by a theatre company based in southern California, the Pacific Conservatory of the Performing Arts (PCPA), to analyse the preferences of …

By | 11 December 2014 |

Attracting new audiences to contemporary classical music

This research was conducted by Alex Turrini, Michael O'hare and Francesca Borgonovi at Bocconi University, Milan, Italy; University of California, Berkeley, USA and the London School of Economics


The paper outlines the difficulties associated with the programming of recently composed classical music. The paper highlights a need to better …

By | 11 December 2014 |

Profiling visitors to contemporary art museums

This research was conducted by Laurie Hanquinet at the University of York


Socio-economic variables (class, education and income etc.) are often seen as the key determinants of attendance at art museums. This article goes beyond this simplistic approach by exploring the ‘cultural profiles’ of museum visitors (a set of cultural …

By | 11 December 2014 |

Best practice in community consultation by museums

This research was conducted by Kalliopi Fouseki at The Science Museum.


The research explores how community consultation is carried out by museums, and highlights in particular the perceptions of community members involved. It uses the case study of seven institutions and their development of exhibitions based on the 1807 Abolition …

By | 11 December 2014 |

The viability of a theatre depends on the character of its local population

This research was conducted by Ken Willis, Jen Snowball, Colin Wymer and Jose Grisolia at Newcastle University, UK, Rhodes University, South Africa and Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain


This paper describes the findings of research that built a statistical model to identify what determined the likelihood that …

By | 9 May 2014 |

Increasing young people's attendance at performing arts events

This research was conducted by Andrew J. Martin, Michael Anderson and Ricci-Jane Adams at the University of Sydney and University of Melbourne, Australia


This paper examined a range of factors that determined whether or not adolescents attended a performing arts event (defined as live dance, music or drama). The study …

By | 6 May 2014 |

Three segments of theatregoers in northeast England

This research was conducted by José M. Grisolía, and Kenneth G. Willis at Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain and Newcastle University, UK


This paper presents a market segmentation of theatregoers at Northern Stage, a theatre in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in northeast England. By analysing the results of a survey …

By | 26 April 2014 |

Cultivating theatre audiences through online activity

This research as conducted by Alex Turrini, Isabella Soscia and Andrea Maulini at Bocconi University, Italy, SKEMA Business School, France and Piccolo Teatro di Milano, Italy


This paper looks at the profile of theatregoers who were classified as ‘tech savvy’ by the authors. This segment tended to be younger, more …

By | 26 April 2014 |

Recruiting and retaining volunteers at a rural producing theatre

This research was conducted by Helen Bussell and Debora Forbes at the University of Teesside, UK


This paper describes best practice in volunteer management, focusing on a regional producing theatre in the UK. It looks at all aspects of the volunteering process – from recruitment and management through to retention. The …

By | 26 April 2014 |