The Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) is assessing the feasibility of establishing a national survey to examine public participation, attendance and attitudes towards the activities covered by all the sectors for which it is responsible.
Leading research agency BMRB has been appointed to explore how such a survey might best be established and a two-month consultation period is about to begin, involving a range of DCMS non-departmental public bodies including Arts Council England, the Film Council, NESTA and Resource: The Council for Museums, Archives, and Libraries. Information about public involvement across the DCMS-related areas is currently fragmented. All the DCMS funding bodies rely on national surveys such as the General Household Survey, for information on which to base policy and plans. Many also conduct their own ad hoc research and buy into wider omnibus surveys to gather the data they need. The aim of a new survey would be to enable statistically robust analysis across the different sectors, and across socio-demographic sub-group and regions. BMRB is due to report findings to the DCMS in March, and the survey should be commissioned shortly afterwards.