A comprehensive report covering key areas of what makes an arts or cultural organisation resilience. Research conducted by Golant Media Ventures and The Audience Agency. Commissioned by Arts Council England.
To understand and inform the role of resilience in shaping cultural strategy it was essential to consult with people who work in and with the cultural sector, for these to be the people actually shaping what ‘resilience’ should and does mean. The appetite to participate was strong, with more than 1,200 sector workers offering their time and opinions. Among extensive findings, three things became particularly apparent:
- There is currently little consistent practice in resilience measures within the sector, or decision-making based on those measures.
- There is a genuine willingness in the sector to embrace the innovation and core behavioural shifts that long-term resilience requires.
- There is a mismatch between those resilience-building behaviours that members of the sector consider most important and those they believe to be most widely practised.
If they are right about the level of importance of these behaviours, narrowing these gaps could be the key to improving resilience. While Arts Council England will be able to use the results of this research to inform sector strategy, the findings can also act as a catalyst for individuals and organisations to embrace what it means to be resilient on their own terms.
Since 2010, supporting resilience has been a central pillar of Arts Council England’s core strategy. To inform their new strategic plan for 2020-30, Arts Council England commissioned Golant Media Ventures and The Audience Agency to update their understanding of the term ‘resilience’, posing the following research questions:
- How resilience is currently understood in the arts and culture sector and whether the understanding of funders and policymakers is congruent with those of others within the sector.
- To what extent, and how, organisations are responding to a need to become more resilient.
- What opportunities there might be to develop the sector’s resilience in the future.