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A Review of Research Related to the Benefits of Arts Engagement

April 25, 201825 April 2018

Social benefits of culture

Business / Arts


The Strategic Counsel

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This brief report focuses on a few studies related to the social and economic benefits of cultural engagement. The review found that “people benefit in multiple ways when there is a vibrant arts and culture base in their community and that taking part or engaging in arts and cultural activities1 has certain positive effects on individual well-being”.

Regarding the individual benefits of the arts, the review found “a positive association between engagement in arts and cultural activities and a range of personal (psychological / physical health) indicators”, including critical thinking, self-related health, lower depression and anxiety, and self-reported satisfaction with life.

The review also found “a considerable body of evidence available showing the positive contribution which arts and culture make to our collective or communal lives”, including voting, volunteering, sharing experiences, building connections, providing networking opportunities, and bridging differences.

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