Next Thursday, the Cultural Research Network will host a Virtual Study Group featuring Createquity’s Arts Policy Library. Part book club, part shop talk, these virtual study group sessions offer cultural researchers and the people who love them an opportunity to engage in discussion with fellow practitioners. Each session is devoted to a specific study, report, journal article, or in this case, methodological process, and the author and/or sponsor of the research will be on hand to offer framing remarks and answer questions.

The fourth meeting of the Cultural Research Network Virtual Study Group will take place on Thursday, February 20 from 2-3:30pm EST. Createquity readers are invited to participate in this live session, which will take a look at two resources that were established to help folks sort through (and evaluate) current arts and culture research: Createquity’s own Arts Policy Library and the Arts Education Partnership’s ArtsEdSearch. You will find a brief description of each resource below. If you are not already familiar with these sites, and ArtsEdSearch in particular, please take some time to explore them before the webinar, as the speakers will start from the assumption that attendees already have some familiarity with each resource.

This is also a reminder that if you self-identify as a cultural researcher, you’re welcome to join the CRN. It’s easy and free! In addition to Virtual Study Group sessions like these every month or two, we trade calls for papers/proposals, job listings, and advice about methodological issues on a regular basis.

Createquity Arts Policy Library

Every year, dozens of research studies, books, evaluation reports, and other texts examining the impact of the arts on individuals and communities are published. In many instances, this literature is the product of an exhaustive investment of time and dollars from foundations, universities, or the authors themselves. Yet many busy arts professionals, to say nothing of casual observers, don’t have time to make it all the way through even one of these documents, much less evaluate its soundness and put it into context with other research. Enter the Createquity Arts Policy Library, which has two important goals: first, to bring greater attention to the important ongoing work in the field of arts research; and second, to synthesize (not just summarize) it for a lay audience. To do this, each text is analyzed in three parts: first, a succinct summary of what it says; second, an analysis of the strength of its arguments, looking at everything from methodological details to the relevance of the questions it seeks to answer; and finally, an attempt to deduce what new information the text gives us in light of the other work we’ve already read, picking out broad themes or trends that may be of interest.


ArtsEdSearch, a project of the Arts Education Partnership (AEP), is the nation’s first online research and policy clearinghouse focused entirely on student and educator outcomes associated with arts learning in and out of school. ArtsEdSearch focuses on research examining how education in the arts—in both discrete arts classes and integrated arts lessons—affects students’ cognitive, personal, social and civic development, as well as how the integration of the arts into the school curriculum affects educators’ instructional practice and engagement in the teaching profession. To be included, all studies must meet a set of criteria for excellent research developed in consultation with the American Educational Research Association (AERA) and the American Evaluation Association (AEA). Launched in April 2012, ArtsEdSearch currently includes summaries of over 200 research studies, syntheses of the major findings of these studies, and implications of the collected research for educational policy.

Click here to register for this event. Hope to see you there!