This page highlights research in New Zealand and internationally about the benefits of the arts and culture on building a healthy, cohesive society. If you know of research that provides evidence about the importance for everyone to have access to the arts and culture, please contact Iona McNaughton (E: firstname.lastname@example.org T: 04 802 4349).
Disability access in Aotearoa New Zealand museums
Path to Accessibility: the current state of disability access in Aotearoa New Zealand museums is a dissertation written by Riah King-Wall for Victoria University. How are museums and galleries around New Zealand engaging with communities of people with disabilities, and consulting with representatives from the disability sector and cultural organisations? A nationwide survey of 41 museums and galleries explored various aspects of disability access, including physical ingress, inclusive exhibition design, tailored public programming, digital accessibility, and levels of disability representation in staff and management positions.
The arts for health and wellbeing
Creative Health, a 2017 report from an All-Party Parliamentary Group in the UK, presents comprehensive evidence on the beneficial impact of the arts. It’s the result of two years of research, evidence-gathering and discussions with patients, health and social care professionals, artists and arts administrators, academics, people in local government, ministers, other policy-makers and parliamentarians. In the report’s Foreword, Rt Hon Lord Howard says: “We hope that our report will influence the thinking and practice of people working professionally in health and social care as well as of artists and people working in cultural organisations … We offer a challenge to habitual thinking and ask for new collaborations to be formed across conventional boundaries. We are calling for an informed and open-minded willingness to accept that the arts can make a significant contribution to addressing a number of the pressing issues faced by our health and social care systems. The evidence we present shows how arts-based approaches can help people to stay well, recover faster, manage long-term conditions and experience a better quality of life. We also show how arts interventions can save money and help staff in their work.”