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Opt-In Surveys


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Open to all arts and culture organizations

Emerging Research Questions for Phase 1 (2023)

  • Do audience members see themselves as stakeholders in arts organizations’ EDI work?

  • How might arts organizations more deeply enfranchise audience members in this work?

  • How do audience members feel about efforts by arts organizations to diversify their artistic offerings and production practices?

  • What is the appetite for programs that center the artistry and stories of historically marginalized populations?

  • How far do audience members think individual arts organizations should go in acknowledging, deconstructing, and redressing structures of cultural production that privilege some and exclude others?

The study also represents an opportunity for participating arts organizations to develop evaluative indicators of audience support for their work in the areas of inclusion, diversity, and equity - indicators that organizations can use to monitor the degree to which their EDI work is legible to, and supported by, their audience. In this way, we hope the study will lead to a more sustained practice of audience engagement around EDI work

The IDEA Study is a special research initiative – a quantitative survey of audience attitudes about inclusion, diversity, equity, and access.

Why the IDEA Study?

Many arts organizations have taken significant steps to address lack of diversity in staffing and board membership, and have adopted more equitable HR policies and practices. Some organizations have moved towards more pluralistic models of artistic leadership and have diversified programming with the aim of serving a broader public.

Many questions remain, however, as to the extent to which audience members understand themselves as stakeholders in this work, their expectations of arts organizations in this regard, and their preferences and tastes for a more diverse palette of artistic work.

Through this field-wide collaborative study, we hope to learn how arts organizations can activate audiences in their work to be more inclusive, more diverse, and more equitable.

Two Phases of Investigation

Phase one of the study in 2023 will explore audience attitudes about inclusion, diversity, and equity. Questions will cover both general attitudes and evaluative questions pertaining to participating arts organizations. In partnership with the League of American Orchestras, a first study cohort of 27 orchestras deployed the survey on April 11, 2023. Phase two of the study in 2024 will delve deeply into the accessibility needs of arts audiences.

To maximize cohort learning, participants in all cohorts must agree to share their results with other participating organizations through the WolfBrown dashboard. After the cohort study concludes, aggregated results will be shared with the larger field through the Audience Outlook Monitor Community.

For more information about the IDEA Study, contact Alan Kline, Director of Audience Research Programs at WolfBrown at

Watch the Informational Webinar

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2024 Cohort Membership will be announced here.

IDEA Study stakeholders


To Be Announced


To Be Announced

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IDEA Study Phase 2 Survey Cohort

To Be Announced

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