West Midlands Culture Programme for London 2012: the impact so far

Two people jumping in the airThe West Midlands Culture Programme for London 2012 (WMCPforL2012) has attracted a total audience of just under a quarter of a million people (220,000), according to a report (pdf, 1.5mb) launched by the West Midlands Cultural Observatory this month. That’s around two and a half Wembley Stadiums full of people for those of you that like to visualise these things!

In the first of a series of reports, West Midlands Culture Programme for London 2012: An evaluation of impact (2008-2010) (pdf, 1.5mb) presents evidence associated with:

  • The social and economic impact of the programme to date
  • The extent and value of media coverage that for the programme
  • The programme’s impact on the capacity of the West Midlands cultural sector
  • Changes in peoples’ perception of the region and its cultural offer (having taking part in programme activities and events)

Survey data contained within the evaluation suggests that the WMCPforL2012 has attracted a diverse range of people from all walks of life. Over a quarter of programme participants have been from BME backgrounds, and over half have been from lower socio-economic group categories (C2DE). These proportions are traditionally unusual for cultural events and activities, and hint at the distinctiveness of the programme so far.

A wide range of social and educational benefits have been derived from taking part in programme activities. According to the research, over a hundred participants have gained (or gained credits towards) formal qualifications through taking part in the programme, and many more have gained new knowledge and skills.

In terms of economic impact, evidence documented in the report suggests the programme may have helped to draw in funding for the region’s cultural and creative sector.

Direct funding for projects from the programme budget has produced in advance of a three-fold multiplier: for every £1 invested, there has been a return of around £3.35 worth of funding for projects.

Additionally, media coverage for the programme has explicitly mentioned 64 local cultural organisations, bringing an untold boost to organisations’ public profile.

Download the evaluation report (pdf, 1.5mb)

Next steps in the WMCPforL2012 research programme include developing a toolkit for measuring the economic impact of cultural events.

For more information about the research contact Lauren Amery (lauren.amery@wmro.org / 0121 202 3249).

One Response

  1. You can watch a slidecast, in which Lauren explains the impact so far.

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