Factors that drive arts attendance: overview of major studies

Factors that drive arts attendance: overview of major studies

By Orian Brook


This presentation looked at a range of primary and secondary research such as the DCMS Taking Part Survey and CASE reviews of research in sports and arts. It posed the question ‘What drives arts attendance? It looks at the impact of distance from venues and concludes that proximity is significant in predicting attendance, along with ethnicity & qualifications, but that proximity is even more significant in predicting frequent attendance, other factors less so.


  • Access to opportunities to attend Museums and Galleries seems to be strongly related to attendance
  • Along with demographic & socio-economic factors
  • However effect of access is not uniform on different groups
  • Straight line distance from a museum/gallery is a relatively crude proxy for access to it
  • Access to car/transport, familiarity with area, commuting/shopping behaviour and psychological factors will also impact
  • These vary for different population groups, as will level of interest
  • Reasonable to think that this effect might be true elsewhere
  • Possibly museums tied in to particular cultural attitudes
Resource type: Research | Published: 2013