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Stone-Olafson research: Spotlight on Arts Audiences

February 22, 2024

Stone-Olafson is conducting a two-year study on the attitudes and behaviours of Alberta arts audiences. The Edmonton Arts Council is pleased to support this project and share the results of the first wave of study. This research is designed to support and help leaders across the arts sector. Arts leaders are working through challenges and trends that have been accelerated by COVID. Audience habits are shifting and their expectations are changing since the pandemic, resulting in declines in revenue and changes in how organizations are supported by audiences across Alberta. This information is designed to help you with these challenges.

Purpose & Objectives

Alberta continues to be at a crossroads brought by a pandemic that has changed public life and reshaped our economy. This is especially true in the arts sector which continues to experience a decline in engagement with events and activities. This work was developed for this sector exclusively. It builds upon research that began in 2020 but is designed to provide specific, relevant and reliable facts to support the leaders in the arts sector as they build relevance and grow attendance.

Key topic areas for Wave 1

  • Understanding current behaviours, habits and patterns 
  • Understanding current attitudes and perceptions towards the arts
  • Understanding barriers to engagement and support
  • Exploring programming and communication preferences
  • Understanding perceptions of value
First wave results

Watch Stone-Olafson report on the findings from the first wave of research in the Spotlight on Arts Audiences project. This two-year study looks at the attitudes and behaviours of Alberta arts audiences beginning in November 2023.



Alberta Report

Edmonton Report

Calgary Report

This initiative is being funded by arts funders keen to use data to drive engagement and growth strategies across Alberta: Edmonton Arts Council, Rozsa Foundation, Edmonton Community Foundation, Calgary Arts Development, and Calgary Foundation.