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AEA Consulting: The Platform


A round-up of articles focused on commentary and analysis of current developments in the cultural sector. 

Does this change everything?

Consumers Cool to Bailout for Movie Theaters, Concert Venues, New Survey Reveals

Consumers believe movie theaters and live music concerts have been among the hardest hit industries by the coronavirus pandemic, according to an exclusive new survey from Performance Research in partnership with Full Circle Research. (Variety)

Creative Places: Supporting Your Local Creative Economy

The Local Government Association (UK) has launched a guide on how councils can best support local creative economies at a time without precedent. (Local Government Association)

‘I Feel Like I’m Failing at Life’: The Terrible Plight of Music Event Staff

The pandemic has shut down concert tours – and with them go thousands of jobs in sound, lighting, catering and more. As the industry lobbies the government, road crews tell their stories. (The Guardian)

‘We Are Having Trouble Living Without Fear’

Beirut’s Cultural Sector Starts to Pick Up the Pieces After the City’s Deadly Explosion. (Artnet News)

Urban Imaginations

Public Art Fund: Art on the Grid

New York City has launched a digital map of public artworks and exhibitions to encourage the public to safely explore their city once again. (NYC & Company)

Manchester to Build First City-Centre Park in 100 Years

Mayfield park is part of government investment in outdoor spaces in response to coronavirus. (The Guardian)

The Nightlife Rescue Plan That Could Save Your City’s Scene

As bars, clubs and music venues emerge as high-risk sites for Covid-19 outbreaks, a team of experts has developed a playbook for nightlife survival. (Bloomberg CityLab

Equity & Social Justice

A Spotlight on Black Figures in Old Master Paintings

Online lectures at the Uffizi Galleries showcase the Black presence in paintings, drawing praise on social media—and protests outside the Italian museum. (The Wall Street Journal)

Heritage for Inclusive Growth

The Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufacturers and Commerce and the British Council have released a strategy hoping to build a better, more equitable and sustainable economy and society. (The RSA)

Josephine Ramirez: The Arts as a Conduit for Rediscovering Our Humanity

“We need the arts not only for the kind of renewal that boosts our recovery from months of isolation due to COVID-19, but also for renewal that helps us address the collective trauma we are experiencing after witnessing racist acts of violence.” (KCET)

Risks for the Future We Want

Philanthropists must learn from protesters and reimagine the formula for making change on racial justice. (Stanford Social Innovation Review)

New Models

The Alchemy of High-Performing Arts Organizations

Undertaken for the Wallace Foundation, SMU DataArts released a white paper designed to provide guidance to performing arts organizations that seek a path linking strategy and financial sustainability. (Wallace Foundation)

The Art of Virtual Transformation

How the Peabody Essex Museum quickly pivoted to an online experience while also streamlining digital business operations. (The New York Times)

Bay Area Theaters Look to Collective Models to Promote Diverse Crop of New Leaders

San Francisco Mime Troupe, Cal Shakes and Hope Mohr Dance are moving away from top-down structures. (Datebook)

Five Things to Fix in the Arts

Douglas McLennan, founder and editor of ArtsJournal, writes about the opportunities of the coronavirus pandemic for the arts. (ArtsJournal)

A Touch of Drama: What Museums Can Learn From the Theatre

What can museums do be become more theatrical? From storytelling approaches to audience interaction, Liam Wiseman from Arts Council England reveals the secrets of bringing history to life with a touch of drama. (Museum-iD)


Cultural Institutions Spent a Whopping $7.9 Billion on New Buildings Last Year. Things Will Look Very Different in 2020

AEA Consulting has released the 2019 Cultural Infrastructure Index. Now in its fourth edition, the Index seeks to measure investment in capital projects in the global cultural sector, identifying projects with a budget of US$10 million or more that were publicly announced or completed within a calendar year. (Artnet News)

Don’t Demolish Old Buildings, Urge Architects

The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) estimates that 35% of the lifecycle carbon from a typical office development is emitted before the building is even opened. (BBC News)

Renovation Rethink?

“Rather than proceeding with its planned refit of Geffen Hall, the New York Philharmonic should make the space a temporary lab in which to figure out what configuration best suits post-pandemic performance.” (The Wall Street Journal)

What Do We Do With the Ghosts of Buildings Past?

These so-called “stranded” infrastructures — those empty offices and defunct shopping malls — are assets awaiting adaptation. (Buro Happold


‘Godspell’ Review: Musical Theater Rises from the Dead

The Berkshire Theater Group put on the first professional musical in the U.S. since the pandemic lockdown, and it’s a revival in every sense. (The New York Times)

James Graham: How Theatre Can Come Back Better

The live arts are struggling for survival. But, says the playwright, the crisis is also a chance to explode barriers. (The Financial Times)

Moving Out

A symposium for artists, performers, producers, programmers and funders working in outdoor arts and events took place on July 4th 2020. (Wraptheworld)

What Will COVID-Safe Theatre-going Look Like?

These complexities are duplicated back stage and on stage, with rabbit warren corridors, crowded dressing rooms and limited wing space, not to mention the sweat and breath and physical contact on stage. (Dance Australia)

AEA Consulting is a global firm setting the standard in strategy and planning for the cultural and creative industries.

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Since 1991, we have successfully delivered more than 1,000 assignments in 35 countries, helping clients around the world plan and realize vital and sustainable cultural projects.