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CLIP: Designing and operationalising an arts impact measurement framework

In 2014, Sue Potts and Stephen Crone were commissioned by Culture Liverpool to first of all review the effectiveness of data collected by the authority’s existing Arts and Culture Investment Programme (ACIP) in evidencing the social and economic impact of funded organisations; and then, based on this review and by looking at best practice elsewhere, to develop an impact framework for its new Culture Liverpool Investment Programme (CLIP), in line with the aims and objectives set out in the Culture Liverpool Action Plan.

In partnership with the European Institute of Urban Affairs, the research team produced, in fulfilment of its brief for the project:

  • An analysis of the former ACIP monitoring regime, focusing on its strengths and weaknesses in terms of evidencing the impact of funded organisations
  • A documentary review of how social and economic arts impact assessments had been conducted elsewhere
  • An investigation of how other local authorities measure the economic impact of arts and cultural activity
  • An economic / social impact framework which could be applied to the new CLIP investment programme

Consultation, during this process, with the local funded organisations, as well as close involvement in the technical design of the new monitoring tools, ensured that the resulting framework was neither prohibitively onerous nor complicated (a common drawback to similar processes identified by the literature review), with the framework now used successfully as the basis of annual reports on the impact of funded organisations.

 

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