The Research grants programme 2015–18

Between 2015 and 2018 the Arts Council funded two rounds of innovative research projects that will increase our knowledge and understanding about the impact of arts and culture. 

All research projects will involve partnerships between arts and cultural organisations and researchers, and will explore the role of arts and culture on individuals and our society. 

Successful applicants: Round 1

Eight project proposals have been awarded almost £1.4 million

Find out more
A young child in a sensory room looks at a saxophone.
Plymouth Music Zone participants making music. Photo © Plymouth Music Zone. Photograph: Kevin Clifford.

Round two

Round two of the Research Grants Programme 2015–18 is now closed for applications.

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Summer 2014: we invested just under £1.4 million in eight research projects 

In summer 2014, we invested £1.4 million in eight research projects across England, involving small, medium and large arts and cultural organisations. Al projects will explore the value of the arts and museums from a diverse range of perspectives and disciplines.

We hope that the funded projects will enhance our evidence-base about cultural value, support artistic practice, influence policy and decision-making, and influence commissioners and funders. 

Projects have been offered between one and three years of funding and from £50,000 to £100,000 funding per year. 

The eight successful applications demonstrated:

  • originality and importance of the research
  • strength of the research partnership
  • rigorous and appropriate research methodologies
  • commitment to sharing, dissemination and exchange of knowledge and learning

Richard Russell, Director of Policy and Research said:

We were delighted by the high-level of interest in the fund from the sector, but it meant we had to make some very difficult decisions. We are pleased with the wide range of projects we are able to fund. Now more than ever, it is important we improve knowledge and understanding about the value of arts and museums. We are looking forward to seeing robust research studies and being able to share findings with government and commissioners at a national and local level.