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Arming the arts in a global crisis

Tools used

  • Survey design
  • Cross tabs modules

When Covid-19 struck, museums, galleries, and performance spaces needed vital audience info to navigate the crisis. Forsta stepped up to help.

The challenge

When nothing’s normal

When Covid-19 struck, the arts went into freefall. Venues shut. Audiences evaporated. No one knew what was going to happen next. If art institutions were going to keep playing a meaningful part in people’s lives through and past the pandemic, they needed to know what life looked like for their former audiences.

“Within the first two weeks of the report being released, cultural organizations were already reporting that they’re using the research to inform reopening timing and communications strategies, the development of new digital offerings, the communication of safety protocols, leadership-level strategy changes in service of diversity and inclusion, among many others. “

Jen Benoit-Bryan
Vice President and Co-Director of Research, Slover Linett

Our solution

Unleashing a survey of scale

Teaming up with audience research agency Slover Linett, and backed by ten partner organizations, we set out on an unprecedented piece of collaborative research, sending over 2 million surveys to people across the US and Canada. Our Forsta Surveys platform seamlessly managed this mammoth task, and didn’t break a sweat when the sample size overtook the original goal ten times over.

The results

Arts venues with the tools to survive

With a dataset of 124,000 participants, we put together an unparalleled state-of-the-union report. Art institutions across America and Canada got crucial insight into their audience – what they were thinking, and how their behavior had changed. The result? Museums, galleries and cultural institutions making informed choices about how to get through the pandemic, and what to do once they were out the other side.


cultural organizations


art venues


survey participants

2 million+

surveys delivered

Arming the arts in a global crisis

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