The Culture and Sport Evidence (CASE) programme was set up by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) in 2008, in collaboration with Arts Council England, English Heritage, the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council and Sport England.

The CASE programme strengthens our understanding of how best to deliver high quality culture and sporting opportunities to the widest audience, bringing valuable benefits to society.


To directly influence culture and sports policy development through the development of a high-quality, cross-cutting, social and economic evidence base for our sectors.   



  • understand how far current research and data can address the fundamental questions of value and what drives people to  engage in culture and sport
  • understand what types of data, analysis, research and resources CASE should provide to influence the policy agenda
  • influence policy research by producing useful data resources and tools
  • use CASE data to inform indicators and targets in future spending reviews
  • become a recognised source of high-quality culture and sports policy research

What has been published?

In July 2010 CASE published a reports by Matrix Knowledge Group and the Evidence for Policy and Practice Information and Co-ordinating Centre (EPPI-Centre) looking at the drivers, impacts and value of engaging in culture and sport. A PowerPoint presentation outlining the main findings can be seen here.

The Drivers, Impacts and Value work includes reports that examine: 

  • the impact of engagement of children and young people in the arts, with a cover note by Catherine Bunting
  • the effectiveness of previous interventions designed to encourage engagement in culture and sport

CASE is divided in to six areas. Used together they create a toolkit to help deliver high quality culture and sporting opportunities:

What this means for the Arts Council

The research published by CASE can help the Arts Council to further understand and demonstrate, among other things, what factors drive engagement in the arts and the impacts that engagement with the arts can have on the lives of people in England. After two years of work the CASE programme has been able to demonstrate the following headlines: 

  • childhood experience, education, age and socio-economic status are all important in predicting arts attendance and media consumption has a positive effect on arts attendance
  • older people from Black and minority ethnic groups are less likely to attend arts events but ethnicity has no effect on attendance by young people
  • there are direct learning impacts for young people who participate in structured arts programmes including positive increases in attainment (1-2 per cent), cognitive skills (16-19 per cent) and transferable skills (10-17 per cent )
  • there is emerging evidence of a relationship between arts attendance and wellbeing, with people's life satisfaction increasing the more they engage with the arts
  • the most effective way to increase engagement is to increase public education and promotion rather than reducing ticket prices or increasing the supply of arts programmes

The Arts Council will be using the detailed findings in the development of our work to encourage public engagement with the arts. In addition, we will be using the new Regional Insights database in our work with partners to improve local culture and sport delivery.

The CASE programme continues in 2012/13, with a major focus on business models in the culture and sport sectors and accounting for social outcomes of engagement in our sectors. We are also planning to update the Local Culture and Heritage Profile Tool.

Further information and all the publications to date are available on the CASE website.