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Mass Culture/Mobilisation culturelle (MC) is pleased to announce that, in collaboration with the Canada Council for the Arts, the Culture Statistics Working Group (Federal-Provincial-Territorial Culture and Heritage Table), Ontario Trillium Foundation, and Toronto Arts Foundation, we are implementing a new research initiative, Research in Residence: Arts’ Civic Impact.

This initiative will engage six early-career researchers, eligible through the Mitacs Accelerate program, to implement on-the-ground research to examine the civic impacts of the arts in the lives of Canadians. Mentored by expert faculty from six different post-secondary institutions, researchers will be matched with Canadian arts organizations and festivals where they will test practical tools and approaches that arts organizations, funders, scholars and governments can use to better articulate their impact in communities.

“The Research in Residence project represents a whole new level of collaboration across the arts community, arts funders and academia to advance arts impact research in Canada”. Liz Forsberg, Lead, Partnership Investments, Ontario Trillium Foundation.

“Mass Culture is thrilled to bring together a diverse group of researchers, an advisory group and link with them arts organizations and festivals across Canada. Researchers will work closely with arts organizations to create in-depth analyses of civic impact of the arts, including issues of anti-racism, equity, Indigenous cultural knowledge, health and wellness, and climate change. This collaborative work will create a national research model that Mass Culture will share openly with the arts and cultural sector.” Clare Daitch, Co-Chair Operations Group, Mass Culture.

“The Canada Council for the Arts is pleased, through a great collaboration with other funders, to support the Research in Residence: Arts Civic Impact project, which is aligned with its Qualitative Impact Framework. This initiative will help the broader arts community explore the impact it has on their communities and society at large.” Gabriel Zamfir – Enache, Director, Research, Measurement and Data Analytics.

The Research in Residence: Arts’ Civic Impact initiative will implement on-the-ground research, identify indicators, and collect, analyze and interpret data. It will be guided by an Advisory Committee of the project’s collaborators, and will be facilitated and documented by Robin Sokoloski at Mass Culture and Mary Elizabeth Luka at University of Toronto Scarborough. When completed, this national research model, including five qualitative impact frameworks will be shared publicly.

Over the next few months, Mass Culture and the project collaborators will invite arts organizations and festivals to apply to host a researcher (virtually where appropriate). Find out more about the initiative here:

The Research in Residence: Arts’ Civic Impact initiative will deepen the capacity of the Canadian arts sector to develop evidence-based approaches and build a future in which the arts sector in Canada can thrive.

Quick Facts

  • The Research in Residence: Arts’ Civic Impact initiative is a collaboration between Mass Culture, the Canada Council for the Arts, the Culture Statistics Working Group (Federal-Provincial-Territorial Culture and Heritage Table), the Ontario Trillium Foundation, and Toronto Arts Foundation.
  • The initiative will engage researchers from each of the following institutions: McGill University, Emily Carr University’s Aboriginal Gathering Place, University of Winnipeg, Dalhousie University, and Carleton University.
  • The researchers and their specific arts’ civic impact area of focus are: Sydney Pickering, Indigenous Cultural Knowledge; Emma Bugg, Climate and Sustainability; Aaron Richmond, Health and Wellbeing, Shanice Bernicky, Diversity and Inclusion; Audree Espada and Missy LeBlanc, Diversity and Inclusion.

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