The Arts in a New Millennium: Research and the Arts Sector

The Arts in a New Millennium: Research and the Arts Sector

The Arts in a New Millennium: Research and the Arts Sector

The Arts in a New Millennium: Research and the Arts Sector

Excerpt

In 1990, David B. Pankratz and Valerie B. Morris coedited a volume of essays titled The Future of the Arts: Public Policy and Arts Research. The 1990 volume was organized around one basic question: What role can social science research play in the formulation of public policy, which can address serious issues confronting the future of the arts in the United States? The chapters sought to answer three main questions that seemed to naturally follow from the organizing question: (1) What was the state of arts research at that time? (2) What problems and opportunities characterized public arts policy? and (3) What key issues would shape the future of the arts in the United States?

A decade later, the editors recontacted many of the contributors to the original volume and asked them to respond to essentially the same organizing question and to the three main questions: (1) What is the current state of arts research and how has it changed over the last decade? (2) What problems and opportunities characterize public arts policy today? and (3) What key issues will shape the future of the arts in the United States and how will they differ from the issues identified in the previous volume?

THE CURRENT STATE OF ARTS RESEARCH

In the 1980s, arts research could, perhaps optimistically, be described as a “developing” study area. A core of dedicated researchers, most of whom knew each other, labored away in a field that brought them little academic recognition and almost no research funds. Then, along with the Robert Mapplethorpe and Andres Serrano controversies and the end of the Cold War, came the period . . .

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