6. Where We Go From Here

Sep, 13 2016 / /

To come up with the insights essential to our mission, we started with questions.  What are the important questions to ask about organizational health and impact?  What general areas of an organization’s activity should the questions address?  Realistically, what areas can be examined with data?  We identified the questions as well as the outcomes to examine in order to answer those questions.

In total, we have identified 184 indices to examine over time, each of which provides insights into one of the questions.  We have data to answer 128 of them, or 70% of the questions, and we know what data we need to work towards gathering in order to answer the rest. 

We have established an ambitious agenda and, in our enthusiasm to share our second report we must recognize the shortcomings.  For example, some of performance drivers that came up as significant in the inaugural report are no longer significant due to the incorporation of new data and to refinements in the way we approach the analyses.  Those drivers that are significant in both reports give us confidence in their robustness.

Going forward, we will continue to advance the sophistication of our methods in order to provide the most precise and useful findings that we can.  We will integrate new data as they become available and provide semi-annual updates examining the additional indices that you are most interested in.  And we are particularly excited to be working with IBM to bring you an online dashboard that will provide you with your organization’s individual KIPI scores. 

Periodic Updates

In this fourth report we took a deep dive on the seven of the indices related to contributed revenue, We will tackle new sets of questions and indices in future reports.

We’d like to hear from you.  Please join the conversation by commenting on our blog, by following us on Twitter @artsresearch and on Facebook.  What areas would you like to know more about?  What did you find valuable?  Intriguing?  Are there content areas you’d like more focused detail on?  What findings are you skeptical about?  What insights or examples can you share with the field related to findings presented in this report?  

We will update the data regularly so that we’re reporting on the most recent facts available, and we will continue to add new sources of data.

Online Dashboard

In July 2016 we launched an online dashboard.  The dashboard allows any organization to get its Key Intangible Performance Indicator (KIPI) on each index.  These scores, ranging from 0-100 for each index, will situate your organization relative to all others, taking into account the characteristics of your community, arts and cultural sector, size, etc. 

If your organization already participates in DataArts' CDP survey, your scores will come up automatically unless you want to make adjustments to any of the line items to reflect updates.  If your organization does not currently participate in the CDP survey, you’ll receive scores after you enter information about your organization (or complete the CDP survey!).  Any organization will be able to use the tool to model what/if scenarios to see how different decisions and resource allocations would affect its scores.

Resource Library

We provide links to a plethora of great resources relating to each of the index areas.  We will continue to add resources on an ongoing basis.


NCAR’s research was conducted and reported on by Dr. Glenn Voss, and Dr. Zannie Voss, NCAR's Research Director and Director, respectively.  They are grateful for the frequent counsel of Dr. William (Bill) R. Dillon

Numerous individuals contributed their thoughts, feedback, time and insights to this project, particularly in the generation of important questions that should be asked and the development and refinement of the indices.  We sincerely thank (in alphabetical order): Maxwell Anderson, John Budd, Zenetta Drew, Naomi Grabel, the late Rick Lester, Chris Millican, Maureen Mixtacki, Kevin Moore, Jill Robinson, Roche Schulfer, Katie Sejba, Joanne Steller, Rebecca Thomas, and Amy Wagliardo.  NCAR’s Inaugural Fellow, Kate Levin, offered insights that were instrumental to many of the comparative analyses between indices provided in this report.

We are indebted to our data and thought partners (in alphabetical order): Boston Consulting Group, DataArts, IBM, Institute of Museum and Library Services, League of American Orchestras, National Assembly of State Arts Agencies, National Center for Charitable Statistics, National Endowment for the Arts, Nonprofit Finance Fund, Theatre Communications Group, and TRG Arts.

The NCAR Advisory Board and visionary founding donors have been instrumental in providing the resources and strategic guidance that have made this project possible.  Dr. Samuel Holland, Dean of SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts, and Dr. Bill Dillon, Associate Dean of SMU’s Cox School of Business, have both supported this research in multiple ways, including the staff talents of Joshua Miller, Lisa Chou, Karen Drennan, Nick Rallo, Tory Winkelman, Abigail Smith, Machiko Hollifield, Jeff Liew, Clay Bell, Allen Gwinn, Jennifer Armstrong, who keeps NCAR connected to the field.

Report designed by Joshua Miller, NCAR Web Developer, and designers Brook Carlock and Jonnie Parmer.