Culture + Community in a Time of Transformation: A Special Edition of Culture Track

LaPlaca Cohen is excited to share the new phase of the “Culture + Community” research in collaboration with Slover Linett and Yancey Consulting. The second wave of this national study, Culture + Community in a Time of Transformation: A Special Edition of Culture Track, includes an even broader frame for culture (from libraries to parks, music venues, and festivals), as well as deeper involvement with small, rural or BIPOC-serving organizations.

Culture + Community is a national research initiative aimed at bridging the cultural sector with the experiences and needs of its communities and audiences during the pandemic and beyond. The findings coming out of this survey also aim to provide the field with actionable insights towards becoming more equitable, inclusive spaces and toward a movement of transformation as cultural organizations become more active participants within movements for social and racial justice. In April and May of 2020, we conducted the first wave of research with a large-scale online survey that asked about the experiences, needs, and behaviors of a representative sample of the U.S. population plus a large sample of people on the contact-lists of more than 650 cultural organizations around the country.

In this second wave of research, we broadened the kinds of organizations in our sample by actively inviting new organizations from categories of institutions who were underrepresented in our Wave 1 work: BIPOC-serving organizations, cultural organizations located in rural parts of the country, festivals (film, food, crafts, music), libraries, for-profit arts, and national and city parks. We also re-invited all 653 organizations from the first wave of the study to participate again in this second wave of research.

As with the first wave, there was no cost to organizations to be a part of the research. Organizations that invited their constituents into the survey contributed to the overall national picture of cultural consumer wants, needs, attitudes, hopes, and behaviors, and received detailed, humanistic data about their own audiences, including an online tool for comparison to the national averages across various dimensions. We thank all the participating organizations for helping field the survey to portions of their audiences, members, and visitors. Click here to see a discipline-specific snapshot of the full list of participating organizations from Wave 2.

In addition to fielding Wave 2 of the quantitative Culture + Community study, we also embarked on a qualitative exploration of the role of creativity, joy, belonging, and connection in the lives of Black and African American adults around the nation. By placing Black experiences at the center of this examination, we aim to learn from Black communities, highlight their lived experiences, and illuminate the way forward with their perspectives.

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Funding for Culture + Community in a Time of Transformation: A Special Edition of Culture Track is generously provided by The Wallace FoundationBarr FoundationWilliam Penn FoundationKnight FoundationArt BridgesAroha Philanthropies, and The Terra Foundation for American Art, with support from NORC/Amerispeak, and FocusVision.

More information on the Culture + Community in a Time of Crisis: A Special Edition of Culture Track, Wave 1 of this study is available here.