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University of Sheffield research to help with cultural economic recovery modelling

The Crucible Theatre Sheffield with The Lyceum behind (University of Sheffield image)

Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) through the UK Research and Innovation Covid-19 Rapid Response Fund, a new research project in partnership with key cultural organisations in Sheffield, will collect crucial data on audiences, venues and freelancers that can be fed into policies and economic recovery plans for the city.

The University of Sheffield says that the true economic impact of Covid-19 on the cultural sector is not yet fully understood beyond the short term, so researchers from the Department of Urban Studies and Planning, will help with economic recovery modelling, develop strategies for external funding priorities and provide a robust picture of the long term support required for the sector.

It states that there are still huge uncertainties around how some cultural venues can safely reopen and attract and maintain the audiences needed to support their businesses.

The opinions of audiences who attend reopened venues will be tracked to gather insight into how confident they are about returning to future events. Findings will help cultural organisations and venues understand the impact of social distancing measures and make improvements to help maintain audiences.

The research will not only be shared in the Sheffield City Region but nationally with help of key partners such as the Music Venues Trust, Theatres Trust, Museums Association, Arts Council England, Core Cities UK, Local Government Association and Royal Town Planning Institute.

Professor John Flint, University of Sheffield's Department of Urban Studies and Planning said:

'The project enables the University's expert researchers to work closely with our partners to jointly address the challenge of facilitating the sustainable return of fantastic venues and events so that they may, once again, play a key role in the vitality of our city and region. In doing so, we will generate crucial insights about how best to support arts and culture across the whole of the UK in the years ahead.

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