A funny thing happened as our social research practice grew and deepened over the last two decades. Some of our research and evaluation studies for individual cultural organizations landed on the desks of the program officers and foundation presidents who had funded that work. Our reputation for big-picture thinking—and for a strong commitment to inclusion and innovation—began to spread, and we began working directly with a number of major foundations that support the arts, creative placemaking, science engagement, and community vitality.

We’re proud to help regional and national funders that are working to create stronger ecosystems and communities through culture. From city-wide initiatives to national cohorts, we work with both the foundation itself and the grantee organizations to facilitate learning, gauge impact, and track change. We’ve been doing that for years in California, for example, in an extensive partnership with the Irvine Foundation. And we’ve helped the MacArthur Foundation, Knight Foundation, National Academy of Sciences, many grantees of the Wallace Foundation, and a wide range of other funder-led programs.

Looking for a fresh, evolutionary approach to program evaluation or community research? We’d love to talk.

Slover Linett has been a partner of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra since 2010, conducting numerous studies to better understand both current and future audiences. Engaging a consistent and professional partner that is experienced in the performing arts has proved incredibly beneficial for our team, as Slover Linett now has a strong knowledge of our market and patrons… This partnership has become an incredibly valuable foundation…”

David Nischwitz

Director, St. Louis Symphony Orchestra

Explore our philanthropy

Arts funding

Arts funding

The largest single engagement in Slover Linett’s history has been an ongoing partnership with the Irvine Foundation’s arts program in California. Like much of our work, this strategic evaluation focuses on defining, measuring, and supporting equity and diversity—both inside the grantee organizations and in their audiences. We’ve brought the same thought-partnership to the Knight Foundation’s multi-city Knight Arts Challenge; to a creative placemaking study for the Levitt Foundation; and to many grantees of the Wallace Foundation’s national funding programs for audience expansion and innovation in the arts. That work has informed strategies and measured outcomes at the portfolio, grantee, and community level—and has given us a nuanced, evolving picture of the arts funding landscape.

Don’t wait to run into us at GIA. If you’re thinking about how to shape or assess your cultural funding program, let’s talk.

Science engagement funding

Science engagement funding

From large public funders like the NSF and NASA to private foundations like Simons, Sloan, Kavli, and others, the science philanthropy community has been nurturing a veritable renaissance of creative public engagement activities online and IRL. The most astute, progressive funders recognize that, at bottom, science communication and informal science learning are forms of cultural participation—with all the complexities, challenges, and opportunities that word carries. That’s why our work as cultural audience researchers—and strategic evaluators for foundations—is so relevant. We view science grantmaking and program evaluation through a wide lens, so we can see promising practices as they emerge, track organizational change, help build grantees’ capacities, and inform future program directions.

If you’re hoping to create new knowledge about public engagement for your foundation, your grantees, and the broader field, give us a call.

Other philanthropy

Other philanthropy

It’s not just the arts and sciences at Slover Linett. We’ve helped major funders like the MacArthur Foundation gauge the impact of their grantmaking in far-flung areas. We’ve helped foundations with their own marketing and community partnership strategies. We’ve written internal and public reports based on our evaluation findings and group-facilitation work. And we’ve been told by foundation leaders and program officers that our research has yielded crucial insights and new strategic priorities across the funding portfolio.

If you have questions about the impact or direction of your grant program, don’t be a stranger.

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