New research highlights MA residents’ hopes for the future of arts and culture.


The Covid-19 pandemic and America’s overdue racial reckoning raised new questions for the U.S. arts and culture sector and made some longstanding questions more urgent. Slover Linett and LaPlaca Cohen began work in early 2020 to develop a national research initiative that would bring audiences as well as the broader American public into a dialogue about what communities value and need from arts and culture organizations—including their hopes for the future of the sector. This research is published as a special, pandemic-era edition of LaPlaca Cohen’s ongoing Culture Track study.

To date, the project has involved two waves of a large-scale online survey, in Spring 2020 and Spring 2021, plus a qualitative study in 2021 involving in-depth interviews with Black adults around the U.S. A range of strategic summaries, policy-level reports, and webinar presentations have been produced and are available here.

Barr’s Arts & Creativity team commissioned Slover Linett to provide “deeper dive” analyses to inform the work of Massachusetts-based arts organizations and foundations. We encourage all to review the two-page summary of key findings and potential actions based on responses from Massachusetts residents. Statewide data is accompanied by region-specific reports and in-depth reports examining findings by race, ethnicity, and income.

Access event information, explore the research, and view practitioners sharing practices that align with research findings below.

View the two-page summary

Watch a convening:

From March through May 2022, Barr, our partners, and cultural leaders held a series of conversations about the research specific to different regions and opportunities to take action. All virtual events were recorded and are available for viewing via the links below.

Explore the research in Massachusetts:

View the reports on Culture + Community in a Time of Transformation within Massachusetts, including statewide and regional studies.

Explore the national reports:

View the reports on Culture + Community in a Time of Transformation across the United States, including overarching findings, an analysis by race/ethnicity, and a study featuring Black perspectives.

Rethinking Relevance, Rebuilding Engagement

Culture + Community in a Time of Crisis: Key Findings from Wave 2 (2021)

A Place to be Heard, A Space to Feel Held

Center the Picture: The Role of Race & Ethnicity in Cultural Engagement

Culture + Community in a Time of Crisis: Key Findings from Wave 1 (2020)

Findings in action: video highlights

Watch practitioners address key themes from Culture + Community in a Time of Transformation research.

Creating inclusive and equitable spaces for all.

Making space for reflection and organizational change.

Growing and deepening connections with community.