Building Arts Audiences: Act on Facts, Not on Hunches6960<p>Arts audiences are declining, but arts organizations are proliferating. You don’t have to be an economist to see a system in distress. Arts communities convened in two Texas cities—Austin and Dallas—to address this central mismatch. </p><p>Sponsored by The Wallace Foundation, “Road on the Road&#58; Texas” offered local arts leaders an opportunity to learn about and discuss nine audience-building practices, analyzed and illuminated in Bob Harlow’s <a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/The-Road-to-Results-Effective-Practices-for-Building-Arts-Audiences.aspx"><em>The Road to Results&#58; Effective Practices for Building Arts Audiences.</em></a> Harlow, an expert in market research, &#160;studied 10 Wallace-supported &#160;arts organizations that had achieved striking results in audience-building efforts, and this volume, commissioned by the foundation, was a look across what they did to get those results.* </p><p>“It doesn’t have to be an unsolved problem,” &#160;moderator Daniel Windham, Wallace’s director of arts, said of the difficulty that audience-building presents. “It’s not about money or size or even time. It’s about commitment.” He wondered aloud whether arts leaders were willing to make the tough programming and structural changes necessary to attract and retain desired audiences over the long haul. </p><p>Keynoter Harlow brought great enthusiasm and data-laced storytelling to his gentle admonition that hunches about audiences will take arts organizations down the wrong path.&#160; His message? You might think you know enough about audiences not coming or returning, but you’d be wrong and you’d make costly mistakes as a result. Instead, he advised organizations to develop a strategy, determine what motivates them, and make audience building, including audience research, a part of everything they do. </p><p>Engaging audiences starts with defining your &quot;mission-critical&quot; problem, Harlow said. He described this as the understanding that change is needed, creating a sense of urgency in the organization. </p><p>In Dallas, Neil Barkley, director and CEO of the Contemporary Arts Center New Orleans, asked the audience, “When you think of New Orleans, what comes to mind?” Out came shouts of&#58; jazz, Mardi Gras, Katrina.&#160; He nodded and said, “Our mission-critical problem was, people coming through the door didn’t reflect the community we lived in.” </p><p>Austin's Prakash Mohandas, founder of Agni Dance, said the organizaton’s audience was “anyone interested in learning about dance inspired by Bollywood, or dancing or fitness with a Bollywood flavor to it.” He defined Agni Dance's mission-critical problem as enabling a community to come together, with a special interest in attracting more children, more diversity and, for survival, just more people. </p><p>Cookie Ruiz, executive director of Ballet Austin, said that her company wants to build a following among people unfamiliar with the organization or the work it presents.&#160; She noted that people won’t get excited by what they don’t understand, so Ballet Austin needs to find ways to “make ourselves easy to get to know.”&#160; She added, “This process naturally takes years.&#160; Engagement is more than one-time attendance, but the good news is that it can be done.” </p><p>You can see some of the early results of Ballet Austin’s audience-building efforts <a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/Ballet-Austin-Building-Audiences-for-Sustainability.aspx">here</a>. </p><p>Harlow wrapped up his Austin and Dallas presentations by summarizing two essentials of the nine practices&#58; </p><ol><li>Successful initiatives made building relationships a sustained priority, so get to know your audiences and help them know you; and</li><li>Keep audience-building issues on the front burner, at the forefront of what you do.</li></ol><p>&#160;</p><p>*The organizations had all been participants in the foundation’s Wallace Excellence Awards initiative, which ended in &#160;2014 after having provided audience-building grants of up to $750,000 to 54 arts organizations in six cities.&#160; Across the 46 WEA recipients that provided reliable data, the results were promising. Over a period that averaged three years, the organizations seeking an increase in the size of their overall audience saw median gains of 27 percent, while those targeting growth of a specific segment, such as teens or families, saw median gains of 60 percent. </p><div><div>&#160;</div>&#160;</div> A Report from Wallace’s “Road on the Road” Convening to Illuminate Effective Audience-Building PracticesGP0|#459b8438-9b87-47d0-814e-02452652da81;L0|#0459b8438-9b87-47d0-814e-02452652da81|arts;GTSet|#e1be52fb-ad26-4379-9818-fd44f616dcf2;GP0|#7ee74777-f4ad-4204-a3cc-1a02bb45abab;L0|#07ee74777-f4ad-4204-a3cc-1a02bb45abab|arts audiences;GP0|#6d76b4c4-bff2-4a32-9edd-7f97c22d5061;L0|#06d76b4c4-bff2-4a32-9edd-7f97c22d5061|performing artsGP0|#8056f3bc-89c1-4297-814a-3e71542163be;L0|#08056f3bc-89c1-4297-814a-3e71542163be|Building Audiences for the Arts;GTSet|#a1e8653d-64cb-48e0-8015-b5826f8c5b61Jessica Schwartz48<img alt="" src="/News-and-Media/Blog/PublishingImages/ROTR-lg-feature.jpg" style="BORDER&#58;0px solid;" />2017-11-03T04:00:00ZYour source for research and ideas to expand high quality learning and enrichment opportunities. 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How Do We Define Success for Young People?6961<span class="first-letter">​​​​I</span> <p>n 2013, Wallace awarded a competitive grant to the University of Chicago Consortium on Chicago School Research to answer a sweeping question&#58; What, besides the three R’s, does a child need to succeed in life? </p><p>The Consortium authors drew on research across a range of fields and disciplines, as well as academic theory and the insights of practitioners, but before they could come to any conclusions, they had to address an even more basic question&#58; What is success, anyway? </p><p dir="ltr" style="text-align&#58;left;"> <img class="wf-Image-Left" alt="NAGAOKA_headshot_2017.jpg" src="/News-and-Media/Blog/PublishingImages/Pages/How-Do-We-Define-Success-for-Young-People/NAGAOKA_headshot_2017.jpg" style="margin&#58;5px;width&#58;144px;" />In the realms of education scholarship and philanthropy, success is often equated with being prepared for college and career, in part because <a href="http&#58;//www.apa.org/pi/ses/resources/publications/children-families.aspx">socioeconomic status is an important factor in overall well-being</a>, and in part because we have a decent idea of how to measure college and career readiness. But Wallace and the Consortium saw a more expansive definition. The report the Consortium released in 2015, <a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/Foundations-for-Young-Adult-Success.aspx"> <em>Foundations for Young Adult Success&#58; A Developmental Framework</em>,</a> says that, in addition to socioeconomic factors, success means “that young people can fulfill individual goals and have the agency and competencies to influence the world around them.” We talked with the report’s lead author, Jenny Nagaoka, about the thinking behind this definition of success.*</p><p> <strong>What were the considerations that led to the Consortium’s definition of young adult success?</strong></p><p>It’s one of the fundamental questions of human existence, right? It was interesting for me because one core area of my research is the transition from high school to college, so college and career readiness is my comfort zone. Like most work in the field, the call for proposals focused on college and career, but we really shifted in our thinking when we started talking to experts. Whether they’re working in a college access program or in higher ed, they see students as human beings. They care not just about whether students have a job and a degree but how they relate to their community&#58; Are they happy? Are they leading satisfying lives, not only professionally but personally? And how can the adults in their lives support that?</p><p> <strong>The framework defines the key factors for success in young adulthood as agency, integrated identity, and competencies (meaning the ability to complete tasks and perform roles). What does it mean, in concrete terms, to have agency and be able to influence the world around you? </strong></p><p>It can be something as small as, if you’re a college student, and you can’t finish your paper by next week because you have three other papers due, do you realize you can talk to your professor, explain your circumstances, and get an extension, that that’s something you might actually have some control over? Or it can be as big as seeing and experiencing racial inequities and becoming engaged in a larger movement.&#160;&#160;</p><p> <strong>Is it possible to be successful in life without fulfilling the goals you set when you’re young?</strong></p><p>Our goals and realities are bound to change over time, but part of the idea of integrated identity is making sense of who you were, who you are now and who you might become. If you wanted to be a painter when you were younger, maybe it’s not what your career ended up being, but you might say, “That was an important part of who I was, and I still on a certain level think of myself as an artist, maybe I can figure out how to integrate that into my life going forward.” </p><p> <strong>Now that the report is a little more than two years old, is there anything you would change about this definition of success?</strong></p><p>There are a lot of questions I don’t have a clear answer to, like, to what extent is valuing individual identity and agency specific to American culture? I’m Japanese American, and Japanese culture is more oriented toward group identity. You’re still undergoing this process of figuring out your place in the world and how to navigate it, but the unit of agency may be more about your family. </p><p> <strong>&#160;</strong></p><p>*This interview has been edited and condensed.</p><p>&#160;</p>Talking with University of Chicago Researcher Jenny Nagaoka about “One of the Fundamental Questions of Human Existence”GP0|#b30ec468-8df4-44a4-8b93-5bb0225193fc;L0|#0b30ec468-8df4-44a4-8b93-5bb0225193fc|SEL;GTSet|#e1be52fb-ad26-4379-9818-fd44f616dcf2;GP0|#cad33471-a186-455a-836f-0d0657808f00;L0|#0cad33471-a186-455a-836f-0d0657808f00|research;GP0|#88b77bae-56d6-47d9-922f-54af703d57b5;L0|#088b77bae-56d6-47d9-922f-54af703d57b5|learning;GP0|#91bf67c6-3cc1-4097-9074-16701a50b2ac;L0|#091bf67c6-3cc1-4097-9074-16701a50b2ac|enrichment;GP0|#b1812aa0-5ef7-401c-bf70-b003141464da;L0|#0b1812aa0-5ef7-401c-bf70-b003141464da|student successGP0|#890cbc1f-f78a-45e7-9bf2-a5986c564667;L0|#0890cbc1f-f78a-45e7-9bf2-a5986c564667|Social and Emotional Learning;GTSet|#a1e8653d-64cb-48e0-8015-b5826f8c5b61Wallace editorial team79<img alt="" src="/News-and-Media/Blog/PublishingImages/jenny-nagoaka-lg-feature.jpg" style="BORDER&#58;0px solid;" />2017-11-02T04:00:00ZYour source for research and ideas to expand high quality learning and enrichment opportunities. 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To Build Afterschool Systems, Communities Must “Figure It Out, Then Figure It Out Again”9064<span class="first-letter">​​​​S</span><p>eeing is believing, the saying goes, and Priscilla Little has seen the benefits of afterschool systems up close for more than two decades. From 1996 to 2010, she oversaw the Harvard Family Research Project’s afterschool efforts. In 2012, she became the manager of Wallace’s “next-generation” <a href="/knowledge-center/after-school/Pages/default.aspx">afterschool system building effort</a>, the successor to an initiative, begun in 2003, to increase access to high-quality afterschool programming by coordinating the work of program providers, government agencies, private funders and other players. </p><p>Now that her time at Wallace has come to a close, we asked Priscilla to reflect on her experience in this evolving field.*</p><p> <strong>How has the field of afterschool system building changed since you started working with Wallace?</strong></p><p>On a base numbers level, there are more communities trying to do it. And we now have cross-sector community collaborations that weren’t in place 10 years ago. Afterschool systems may start off as straight-up networks of programs, but they quickly embrace the fact that they’re operating in a larger community context. They recognize that they need to connect with other initiatives that touch young people and try to be more efficient, streamlined and coordinated in their approach. More afterschool systems are also working intentionally with school districts now, partly in response to education reform and greater openness on the part of schools. Another thing I’m seeing is increasing language about afterschool as a solution to workforce challenges—not just because it solves a childcare issue for the workforce but because it promotes the kind of skills employers need. It’s not that afterschool programs are doing anything different, but the way they’re being talked about is different.</p><p> <strong>What is the most important thing you’ve learned about system building in your time with Wallace?</strong></p><p>One thing I’ve come to appreciate is the importance of coordination that<a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/Growing-Together-Learning-Together.aspx"> fits the local context</a>. What was a revelation for many of the sites in the Wallace initiatives is that coordination is going to change over time because community context changes. The notion of “one and done” is just not realistic. I could tell you many stories of systems that incubate in one place and land in another, and that’s an inherently good thing. That disruptive change is healthy for a system. Communities just want to figure out, “What is this going to look like?” And I tell them, “Good enough, good until. We’ll figure it out, and when something new comes along, we’ll figure it out again.” </p><p> <strong>What do you not know about system building that you still hope to learn?</strong></p><p>What I keep getting asked is, “How do we sustain this work absent big resources from foundations?” How does it become part of the course of nurturing children to have these systems in place? Beyond the systems approach, how do we change education so that afterschool becomes part of the equation without school districts co-opting it? Wallace’s new <a href="/knowledge-center/Social-and-Emotional-Learning/Pages/default.aspx">Partnerships for Social and Emotional Learning initiative</a> is partly about how we can help both school and afterschool systems do what they do well but coordinate better.</p><p> <strong>What does the future of afterschool system building look like to you? </strong></p><p>Continuing to build systems is important because they’re good for providers and kids. The next frontier is changing the conversation so that it starts with equity and what young people need to be successful, not what we can do. We’re quick to jump to institutions and settings without asking, “What is your vision for young people in this community? How can the organizations in the community support that vision?”</p><p>*This interview has been edited and condensed.</p>Insights from Former Initiative Manager Priscilla LittleGP0|#4838d563-77b4-44ff-a5c1-d01628309a7e;L0|#04838d563-77b4-44ff-a5c1-d01628309a7e|afterschool systems;GTSet|#e1be52fb-ad26-4379-9818-fd44f616dcf2;GP0|#cad33471-a186-455a-836f-0d0657808f00;L0|#0cad33471-a186-455a-836f-0d0657808f00|research;GP0|#88b77bae-56d6-47d9-922f-54af703d57b5;L0|#088b77bae-56d6-47d9-922f-54af703d57b5|learning;GP0|#91bf67c6-3cc1-4097-9074-16701a50b2ac;L0|#091bf67c6-3cc1-4097-9074-16701a50b2ac|enrichmentGP0|#b804f37e-c5dd-4433-a644-37b51bb2e211;L0|#0b804f37e-c5dd-4433-a644-37b51bb2e211|Afterschool;GTSet|#a1e8653d-64cb-48e0-8015-b5826f8c5b61Wallace editorial team79<img alt="" src="/News-and-Media/Blog/PublishingImages/priscilla-qa-afterschool-lg-feature.jpg" style="BORDER&#58;0px solid;" />2017-11-02T04:00:00ZYour source for research and ideas to expand high quality learning and enrichment opportunities. 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Wallace’s Ten Most Downloaded Publications of All Time6834<span class="first-letter">​​​​S</span><p>ince launching our Knowledge center in 2003, thousands of people visit and find our library of published research, reports and other tools every day. So, what are they looking for? </p><p>Here’s a list of our Top 10 Most Downloaded resources as of fall 2017&#58;</p><ol><li> <strong><em><a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/How-Leadership-Influences-Student-Learning.aspx">How Leadership Influences Student Learning </a>&#160;</em>(Published September 2004) – 562,902 downloads</strong><br> In this hallmark publication on school leadership—our most downloaded report of all time—the authors suggest and investigate the notion that in order to improve schools, focus should be placed on not just teachers, but also on principals and administrators. </li><li> <strong> <em> <a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/The-School-Principal-as-Leader-Guiding-Schools-to-Better-Teaching-and-Learning.aspx">The School Principal as Leader&#58; Guiding Schools to Better Teaching and Learning</a></em> (Published January 2012) – 372,094 downloads</strong><br> This report concludes that there are five key actions that effective school leaders do particularly well, including shaping a vision of academic success for all students, and cultivating leadership in others.</li><li> <em><a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/Investigating-the-Links-to-Improved-Student-Learning.aspx"><strong>Learning From Leadership&#58; Investigating the Links to Improved Student Learning</strong></a></em><strong> (Published July 2010) – 108,970 downloads</strong><br> Based on six years of quantitative data, this report confirms that effective school leadership leads to student success, showing that teachers, principals, district leaders and state policymakers all have an impact on learning.</li><li> <strong><em><a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/Three-Essentials-to-Improving-Schools.aspx">The Three Essentials&#58; Improving Schools Requires District Vision, District and State Support, and Principal Leadership</a></em> (Published October 2010) – 95,857 downloads</strong><br> Published by the Southern Regional Education Board, this report examines how school districts and states are failing to provide principals with what they need to turn around America’s challenged middle and high schools.</li><li> <strong><em><a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/The-Making-of-the-Principal-Five-Lessons-in-Leadership-Training.aspx">The Making of the Principal&#58; Five Lessons in Leadership Training</a></em> (Published June 2012) – 74,323 downloads</strong><br> Like many of the education leadership reports before this one, <em>Making of the Principal</em> highlights the problems facing principal training programs and offers five steps to better training.</li><li> <strong><em><a href="/knowledge-center/Resources-for-Financial-Management/Pages/Program-Based-Budget-Template.aspx">Strong Nonprofits Microsite&#58; Program Based Budget Builder</a></em> (Published February 2013) – 72,373 downloads</strong><br> This tool, from our nonprofit financial management microsite, allows an organization to build a budget and list revenue across different programs and functions, including allocation of personnel and direct and indirect non-personnel expenses.</li><li> <strong><em><a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/Preparing-School-Leaders.aspx">Preparing School Leaders for a Changing World&#58; Lessons from Exemplary Leadership Development Programs</a></em> – Final Report (Published April 2007) – 72,197 downloads</strong><br> In this groundbreaking report, Stanford University authors provide case studies and guidelines to help district and state policymakers reinvent how principals are prepared for their jobs. </li><li> <strong> <em> <a href="/knowledge-center/resources-for-financial-management/Pages/A-Five-Step-Guide-to-Budget-Development.aspx">Strong Nonprofits Microsite&#58; A Five-Step Guide to Budget Development</a></em> (Published February 2013)&#160; – 60,387 downloads</strong><br> This guide, also from our nonprofit financial management microsite, provides a team-based approach to budget development, including goals, personnel and process.</li><li> <strong><em><a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/The-Effective-Principal.aspx">The Effective Principal&#58; Five Pivotal Practices that Shape Instructional Leadership</a></em> (Published April 2012) – 50,675 downloads</strong><br> The most recently released publication on our top-10 list, the <em>Effective Principal</em> highlights five practices that characterize the leadership of principals who can make a difference in teaching and learning.</li><li> <strong><em><a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/How-Museums-Can-Become-Visitor-Centered.aspx">Services to People&#58; Challenges and Rewards. How Museums Can Become More Visitor-Centered</a></em> (Published April 2001) – 40,954 downloads</strong><br> This one dips way back into our archives, but practitioners looking to create a visitor-centered approach to museums still find it useful. </li></ol>Principals lead the way in our list of most-downloaded publications GP0|#8b1028e8-a8f4-4fa5-8ef0-33c300b53e1c;L0|#08b1028e8-a8f4-4fa5-8ef0-33c300b53e1c|website;GTSet|#e1be52fb-ad26-4379-9818-fd44f616dcf2;GP0|#daf15b32-e899-4283-9e24-d6d8bb98b0e8;L0|#0daf15b32-e899-4283-9e24-d6d8bb98b0e8|top ten lists;GP0|#5a36b127-c74c-42b1-b2b2-b84367fc8703;L0|#05a36b127-c74c-42b1-b2b2-b84367fc8703|Wallace;GP0|#cad33471-a186-455a-836f-0d0657808f00;L0|#0cad33471-a186-455a-836f-0d0657808f00|research;GP0|#a543fa77-7186-47e8-8be8-ec7c33473169;L0|#0a543fa77-7186-47e8-8be8-ec7c33473169|publicationsGP0|#6b3d2eef-1f47-4b7e-b105-bd18b7e1c384;L0|#06b3d2eef-1f47-4b7e-b105-bd18b7e1c384|News;GTSet|#a1e8653d-64cb-48e0-8015-b5826f8c5b61Wallace editorial team79<img alt="" src="/News-and-Media/Blog/PublishingImages/wallace-top-ten-lg-feature-copy.jpg" style="BORDER&#58;0px solid;" />2017-10-19T04:00:00ZYour source for research and ideas to expand high quality learning and enrichment opportunities. 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10 Principles to Create a Promising Youth Arts Program230<p> <span class="first-letter">​​​​W</span>hat makes a youth arts program effective? There are hundreds of arts programs in the U.S. Some engage young people in ways that lead to a lifetime commitment to the arts. Others fall rather flat, failing to inspire much more than fleeting curiosity.<br><br> Is there a way to tell the former from the latter? Is there a formula that allows parents, practitioners and policymakers to distinguish a promising program from a dud?<br><br> It turns out there is.<br><br> Researchers Denise Montgomery, Peter Rogovin and Neromanie Persaud combed through literature, interviewed experts, studied exemplary arts organizations, talked to hundreds of young people and their parents and uncovered 10 principles the best arts programs appear to share. According to their report, <a href="/knowledge-center/Pages/Something-to-Say-Success-Principles-for-Afterschool-Arts-Programs.aspx"><em>Something to Say&#58; Success Principles for Afterschool Arts Programs from Urban Youth and Other Experts</em></a>, the best youth arts programs have&#58;</p><ol><li>Professional, practicing artists as teachers</li><li>Executive directors that have a deep, public commitment to the arts</li><li>Dedicated, inspiring and welcoming spaces in which young people can practice their arts</li><li>A culture of high expectations for youth</li><li>Prominent public events that showcase the art participants create</li><li>Positive relationships among the youth and adults involved in the program</li><li>Meaningful leadership roles for young people</li><li>Hands-on experiences for youth with current equipment and technology</li><li>Strong partnerships with key stakeholders in the community</li><li>A space that is physically and emotionally safe so young people can learn, experiment and thrive</li></ol><p>The researchers derived these principles partly by observing small, specialized programs. Would it be possible, we wondered, for a large, national organization to combine these principles with its countrywide infrastructure to provide high-quality arts education to much larger numbers of urban youth?<br><br> We have been working since 2014 with the Boys &amp; Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) in our <a href="/how-we-work/our-work/Pages/Arts-Education-Initiative.aspx">Youth Arts Initiative</a> to find out. Six BGCA clubhouses in the Midwest have so far shown that it is in fact possible for a large, generalist organization to adopt the 10 principles, according to a report about the first phase of the initiative. In the next phase, six additional clubhouses will introduce similar programs, but will share resources to reduce costs and increase efficiency. <br><br> We’ll be studying their efforts through 2020 and reporting back frequently here. Stay tuned to see how they fare.</p><div><div>&#160;</div>&#160;</div>A study of literature, expert opinion, successful programs and youth preferences points to elements that help arts programs succeedGP0|#3cd6c206-0bea-4598-8279-ad75a7ce4a02;L0|#03cd6c206-0bea-4598-8279-ad75a7ce4a02|literature review;GTSet|#e1be52fb-ad26-4379-9818-fd44f616dcf2;GP0|#1aa0d0d6-f4e7-4b62-81d0-664a301459d1;L0|#01aa0d0d6-f4e7-4b62-81d0-664a301459d1|youth arts;GP0|#cc748b5d-8f6b-44e2-b12a-3ab317f145d9;L0|#0cc748b5d-8f6b-44e2-b12a-3ab317f145d9|Boys and Girls ClubGP0|#d2020f9f-c87c-4828-b93b-572786ae94a8;L0|#0d2020f9f-c87c-4828-b93b-572786ae94a8|Arts Education;GTSet|#a1e8653d-64cb-48e0-8015-b5826f8c5b61Wallace editorial team79<img alt="" src="/News-and-Media/Blog/PublishingImages/blog-intro-series-arts-ed-lg-feature.jpg" style="BORDER&#58;0px solid;" />2017-09-21T04:00:00ZA study of literature, expert opinion, successful programs and youth preferences point to elements that help arts programs succeed11/9/2017 8:56:23 PM153http://www.wallacefoundation.org/News-and-Media/Blog/Pages/Forms/AllItems.aspxhtmlFalseaspx

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