Peter Linett

Co-Founder & Catalyst

Peter Linett and his colleagues help cultural organizations ask smart questions about participation, relevance, and innovation, then answer those questions in collboration with their communities and audiences. His passion for equity, access, and innovation in public engagement has helped make Slover Linett a trusted partner for exploration and growth in areas such as classical music, art museums, science communication, public media, and other cultural domains where assumptions are evolving rapidly. As co-leader of the firm since 1999, Peter supports our Chicago-based team with guidance and vision and our clients with context and insights from across the cultural sector.

During the COVID crisis and the movement for Black Lives, Peter has been overseeing (with Jen Benoit-Bryan, PhD) Culture and Community in a Time of Crisis: A National Research & Strategy Collaboration. The project, a partnership with LaPlaca Cohen/Culture Track and Yancey Consulting, is a large-scale, multi-phase initiative to support the cultural sector and help strengthen communities around the U.S. Peter is the author or co-author of research reports on a wide range of topics, including creative placemaking impacts (for the Levitt Foundation), arts innovation (for the Irvine Foundation), community engagement with controversial subjects (for the Smithsonian Human Origins Program at the National Museum of Natural History), and the role of the arts in higher education (for Cornell University). He co-organized the Evolving Culture of Science Engagement convening at MIT in 2013 and serves on the board of the US/UK art- science organization Guerilla Science; he is also an advisor to the socially engaged art project “Look at Art. Get Paid.”

Peter is a member of the editorial board of Curator, the museum field’s leading peer-reviewed journal, and was previously the journal’s associate editor for theory and practice; his articles and reviews have appeared regularly in its pages. He was also a founding advisory board member of the Center for the Future of Museums at the American Alliance of Museums and an affiliate of the Cultural Policy Center at the University of Chicago, where he helped develop a national study of the building boom in arts facilities and gave several talks. He has been an invited speaker at conferences and symposia of the National Endowment for the Arts, Grantmakers in the Arts, Alliance for the Arts at Research Universities (a2ru), Indiana University’s Center for Cultural Affairs, the League of American Orchestras, Science Festival Alliance, Association of Science & Technology Centers, Visitor Studies Association, and the UK-based Arts Marketing Association. He has guest-taught at the Yale School of Drama and the Getty Leadership Institute.

Prior to Slover Linett, Peter worked on the for-profit side of culture, learning about storytelling and audience engagement in positions at Warner Bros. in Burbank, CA and HBO in New York City. A humanities nerd by background, he earned his undergraduate degree in music at Yale University and pursued graduate coursework in philosophy of art at the University of Chicago. Peter loves hiking, camping, and playing guitar with friends who have better singing voices. Before the pandemic, he split his time between Santa Fe and Chicago; he has been weathering the lockdowns in the high desert.