Inside out

The role of ‘audience research’ in cultural policies in the United States

Authored by: Jennifer L. Novak-Leonard

The Routledge Handbook of Global Cultural Policy

Print publication date:  September  2017
Online publication date:  September  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138857827
eBook ISBN: 9781315718408
Adobe ISBN:


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“Cultural policy” in the US is not what it is elsewhere in the world. Uniquely, the recognized arts-related policies in the US have largely evolved from opportunities created within US tax code and the influence and financial support of philanthropic entities. This chapter discusses the evolution of arts policy-making since the mid-twentieth century in the US and the role of audience research in policy-making over this time. While audience research stemmed from a policy paradigm focused on supporting the nonprofit cultural infrastructure in the US, this chapter argues that social and policy contexts in the US and advancements made to audience and arts participation research over the past 10 years are calling for policy-makers to focus on expanding the view of arts and culture and deepening the role of arts and culture in democratic life.

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