This is the CWL News and Funded Project News Archive. It draws an informative picture on which stories relevant to the creative industries were happening during the AHRC-funded period of Creativeworks London between 2012 and 2016.

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New AHRC Report: Understanding the value of arts and culture

The UK has a rich and vibrant cultural story and one that we all engage and participate in, whether it is going to the theatre or a concert, streaming a film or going to a weekly book club. Culture, creativity and business meet in this important space and involvement in cultural activity helps define us as individuals and as communities, as well as influencing how the rest of the world views us and wants to engage with us.

A new report Understanding the value of arts and culture by Professor Geoffrey Crossick and Dr Patrycja Kaszynska presents how we think about the value of the arts and culture to individuals and society, and the methodologies we can use for capturing cultural value.

The AHRC’s three-year Cultural Value Project involved 70 original pieces of work that provide the most in-depth attempt to understand the difference made by arts and culture.

Professor Crossick states: “In recent years debate about cultural value has not grasped the range of the ways in which people engage with arts and culture. The Project broadens the scope of the discussion on cultural value to include alongside the subsidised cultural sectors the commercial sector, and amateur and participatory arts and culture, which are how most people engage. It also emphasises the way they are part of a single ecology.”

What emerges from the project is the need to make first-hand, individual experience of arts and culture central to our understanding of their value. To fully appreciate the impact of culture on the economy, on cities or on health we must start with understanding the individual experience, whether this is in helping people to become more reflective about themselves and others or more imaginative and innovative as members of society. So many other benefits flow from that.

Dr Kaszynska commented: “If we start with the individual and work outwards to broader society and the economy we quickly realise we need a wider and more subtle methodological repertoire to talk about the concept of cultural value and how we evaluate it.”

Click here to read the full report.

For further information from the AHRC, please contact Danielle Moore-Chick on 01793 41 6021 or

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Creativeworks London is one of four Knowledge Exchange Hubs for the Creative Economy funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) to develop strategic partnerships with creative businesses and cultural organisations, to strengthen and diversify their collaborative research activities and increase the number of arts and humanities researchers actively engaged in research-based knowledge exchange.