Like others in the arts and culture sector, we’ve been asking ourselves how we can help the field during these difficult times.   We believe that a shared, empirical picture of cultural audiences and the wider American public will help ground and guide a collective response to the crisis. With lead funding from the Wallace Foundation and additional support from Art Bridges, Slover Linett and LaPlaca Cohen are partnering on a national audience and community research study designed to answer a range of urgent questions about the role and future of culture and the arts in the hearts, minds, families, and social lives of Americans in response to the pandemic; regularly update those answers as the situation progresses and recovery begins; and help make strategic sense of those answers via forward-looking, inclusive dialogue that leads to adaptation and resilience. This sense-making and dialogue work will leverage the Culture Track platform, LaPlaca Cohen’s ongoing, open-source study of cultural participation patterns and attitudes in the U.S.; this COVID study will be an “emergency edition” of Culture Track.
To make the sample as diverse and inclusive as possible, we’re inviting organizations of all sizes and kinds across the country to send survey invitations to their audiences, as described below. There is no cost to participate, and your organization will be able to securely view your audience’s survey responses and compare them to the aggregate — and to a nationally representative general-population sample provided by NORC at the University of Chicago. Already more than 200 organizations – theaters, orchestras, art museums, science museums, history museums, zoos & aquariums, parks, and gardens – have signed up since we publicly announced the survey this week.
We are all in this together, and we hope this research shines a light ahead for your cultural organization and the field as a whole. For more information on how your organization can participate and the goals of this research, please visit the FAQ page by clicking here.

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