Cultural Participation Monitor

The Audience Agency's nationwide longitudinal (ongoing) panel survey of changing views about participating in creative and cultural activities through the recent and ongoing crises, and beyond.

Our Cultural Participation Monitor:

  • Samples the whole population

  • Covers all sectors

  • Shows change over time

  • Is linked to Audience Spectrum

Now, more than ever, we need to understand our audiences and keep them at the heart of what we do. We need to move through these changing – and challenging - times WITH audiences.

Anne Torreggiani, CEO, The Audience Agency

The Cultural Population Monitor (CPM) is our population survey that serves up a quick slice of intel about what people do, want and feel about creative and cultural activity, as it changes. Three times a year we ask the nation(s) what they think about the issues of the moment – cost of living, working from home, climate change and more – and how it’s affecting their creative and cultural life. Are people really behaving badly in venues? Are they more or less likely to donate? What excites and bores them?

We ask a completely representative cross-section of society – so we get to hear from people who are avid culture vultures as well as people whose creative lives take place far away from venues and institutions. The Cultural Participation Monitor serves the wider cultural sector and – most importantly – it’s designed with them. If you have a burning question, please get in touch. And if you want to keep abreast of changes, you can always check out the latest key findings or join us for one of our regular free TEA Break sessions. You can also sponsor a wave of the Monitor to ask audiences your own burning questions, though note space is strictly limited…drop the project lead Oliver Mantell a line to find out when and how.

The Origins of the Monitor

The Cultural Participation Monitor was part of our work on the Covid-19 Impact Research with Centre for Cultural Value at Leeds, funded by the UKRI Covid Response fund. From autumn 2020 – autumn 21, we did several waves of a survey of the population asking them about their changed and changing attitudes to culture and creativity, going out and staying in, spending their time and money.

What's Next for the Monitor

It has proved so useful to have a robust source of information about a proper cross-section of attitudes right now, we have decided to continue the Monitor as quarterly survey in a partnership between The Audience Agency and Centre for Cultural Value. We are currently crowd-funding it while we secure a long-term funder. Opportunities to participate in the future of the monitor include:

  • Collaboration and partnership | We are now working in partnership on each wave of the Monitor to give it a special focus or resonance - and to help us to spread the cost. Recent partners have included: Vocaleyes and Stagetext, who focused on the experience of disabled people and audiences; the Association for Cultural Enterprises who looked at retail and catering in cultural venues; and the Association of Leading Visitor Attractions, who examined membership, donations and values.
  • Bespoke Analysis | We have collected a wealth of information over the past 2 years and hold detailed information – including by region and demographics - from a wide range of questions about live and online engagement. If you have specific questions, we may be able to answer them straight away or can offer our services to carry out bespoke analysis for a small fee, contributing to ongoing overheads.

Over to you…

We’d love to hear what you think of Audience Answers and your suggestions as to how we can improve it.

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