Our Stories

What stories do arts and cultural organisations want and need to share about the value of their work? How has the Relative Values methodology helped arts and cultural organisations to tell their stories?

Below we have shared our theoretical framework for the project, the different ways we have put these theoretical principles into practice, and also some of the results we have achieved through partnership and collaboration with arts and cultural organisations. 

The Relative Values methodology enabled each of our partners to produce context-specific evidence about the socio-economic impact of their work in fragile urban territories in the UK and Brazil. Each partner has presented their data in different ways, which is allowing them to inform and shape debates about creative and cultural policy in their territories.  

Below, you can access a Toolkit we have developed to share our methodologies, enabling a broader range of artists, projects and creative organisations to produce and analyse data, and quantify aspects of their impact.

Our aim is that the data they generate through the application of this methodology will support artists and organisations to understand the impact of their interventions, enabling them to refine activities and better articulate the value of their work in their dialogue with key institutions, policymakers and decision-makers supporting creative practice.   

You can also access two project reports, outlining our findings through our collaborations with arts organisations, producers and cultural institutions. 



We have created this toolkit to share our methodologies in an accessible format with other researchers and practitioners. 

The toolkit was developed with four partner arts organisations (Agency of Youth Networks, BAC, Contact Theatre, and Maré Development Networks) in Relative Values I, and tested and adapted by young cultural producers working in vulnerable territories (Relative Values II) and by arts organisations supported by a national arts funding programme (Relative Values III). 

Relative Values

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Relative Values set out to construct a new narrative about the socioeconomic impacts generated by cultural activities, through a co-creative research partnership with four arts organizations in Britain and Brazil. It represents the first steps towards building a system of multidimensional indicators that can calibrate, identify, record and disseminate elements derived from cultural practices that seek to make real and transformational change within the contexts where they work.

The focus of this pilot project has been to build indicators in collaboration with all of the arts organisations  and to work with them to produce and analyse data that would quantify elements of their impact. The results that the indicators from the pilot provide are not definitive, and do not allow statistical inferences about the participants in the study: it is intended that the indicators created here will be consolidated through future iterations of the research methodology 

Relative Values

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Beyond Exchange (Relative Values II) aimed to adapt the Relative Values methodologies so that they could be used at a micro-scale by artists and cultural producers working in fragile urban territories subject to multiple stress-factors (socio-economic exclusion, high levels of violence, etc) in Brazil.

In the project, we engaged 40 participants who produced coherent and comparable data about what their projects achieve, resulting in the application of over 1,000 quantitative questionnaires with residents from Rio de Janeiro’s most vulnerable and socially excluded communities. The research has produced unique evidence of engagement in arts practices by a population that is usually disregarded by any standard measurements of cultural engagement, enabling new data to inform evidence-based policy making.