Torbay Arts Development Officer / News / Wed 18th Jan 2012 National well-being and Art.....
A Government-sponsored consultation seeking to identify the factors that influence national wellbeing makes no explicit mention of the arts or creativity, suggesting that cultural activity could be excluded from future statistical measures of quality of life.
The consultation proposals, prepared by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), reflect the outcome of a national debate on the nature of wellbeing which took place between November 2010 and April 2011. Prior to the debate engagement with cultural activity was recognised as an influencer on personal wellbeing, but there is currently no proposal to include measures of this in compiling the key indicators of wellbeing in Britain.
The most notable absentee from the list of data to be used is the DCMS’s robust research on arts attendance and participation gathered through its regular ‘Taking Part’ survey. Such an omission has the potential to undermine efforts by the arts sector to embed the arts into the wider social inclusion agenda.
Voluntary Arts is working with Arts professional, Play’s the Thing and the Happy Museum Project to spread the word about this vital consultation and encourage the sector to respond.