Title Audience DEveloper: Skills and Training in Europe. ADESTE
Project Number 540087-LLP-1-2013-1-IT-LEONARDO-LMP
Project Type Development of Innovation
Country EU-Centralised Projects
Marketing Text The ADESTE project is focused on a new professional profile which is increasingly needed in the cultural sector in Europe: the Audience Developer. In cultural organizations this profile, with an integrative vision and a cross-organizational role, will deal with the audience engagement and building, active spectatorship and participation in a strategic manner. The project researched and shared formal and informal training methodologies, based on the identified set of skills needed and piloted the innovative training in 5 different EU Countries.
The ADESTE (Audience DEveloper: Skills and Training in Europe) project is funded by the European Union’s Lifelong Learning Programme, Leonardo Da Vinci – Development of Innovation. The project aims to support cultural organisations and practitioners to face the big challenges of building wider audiences, deepening engagement and increasing accessibility to arts and culture.
The project consortium is made up of seven partners in 5 different European countries, 2 international partners from India and the United States and 5 associate partners.
The partners are working together on various strands of activity:
• Pooling resources and expertise
• Identifying the skills required of people working in audience development
• Mapping and collecting audience development best practice
• Designing and testing formal, informal and innovative training methods for audience development in line with the needs of the cultural labour market
• Promoting cooperation and exchange between different stakeholders through a pan-European and cross-sectorial approach
ADESTE has researched and codified a new European occupational profile in the fields of arts and culture: those who are building wider audiences, deepening engagement and increasing accessibility to arts and culture.
This resource was produced to accompany the Adeste pilot training programme as part of the resource to help organisations in the development of their audience development plans.
A significant part of European citizens still rarely engage in cultural activities, yet it acquires a growing and more urgent relevance to achieve a better and fairer distribution of opportunities to take part in cultural life. This objective is related to how cultural organizations create engagement with their audiences. A new demand of skills to face the new challenges of cultural democracy is arising from the sector, which is lacking specific competences related to promoting access and cultural participation. ADESTE stemmed from the need to fill this gap by promoting a new professional profile, with specific expertise related to audience development and engagement. Parallel to the goal of professionalizing a new key function, the project endorsed the idea of audience development as a new whole organisational approach for cultural organisations. The development of skills to promote innovative approaches to analyse, develop, retain, engage audiences, is intended as a response to the need of new models for the sustainability of the cultural sector.
The ADESTE consortium brought together a range of experienced and skilled European organisations that reflect the latest developments in audience development: 7 partners in 5 different European countries, 2 international partners from India and the United States and 6 associated partners.
From November 2013 till April 2016 for 30 months, they were involved in the:
• mapping of best practices and strategies for analysis and involvement of audiences;
• development of a database of professionals in the field;
• research and development of competency models for cultural workers specialized in audience development;
• identification of a new European professional profile linked to the development of audiences for arts and culture;
• development and testing of an innovative training method at European level;
• evaluation and validation of the pilot training.
The ADESTE outputs are available on the website http://www.adesteproject.eu/resources
Amongst them, the “Report on new training needs” and “European occupational standard profile of the audience developer” represent the results of the initial research implemented thanks to the involvement of a large group of experts at different levels feeding in different perspectives. Moreover the “Set of guidelines for an effective vocational training for the European Audience Developer” is a compendium of the contents and methodological approach adopted in the ADESTE training programme and includes some of the resources that can help organisations develop their audience development strategies. The results of the evaluation carried out along the pilot testing in Italy, Spain, Denmark, Poland and the UK are collected in the “ADESTE Evaluation Framework”.
For a deeper understanding of all the most relevant stages, exchanges and findings of ADESTE, the report “Steps towards a good audience practice: following the learnings of the ADESTE project” tells the journey behind the project, through a collection of articles and reflections from the people involved in the project: researchers, trainers from the ADESTE team, participants in the training programmes, and external experts. The pan-European and cross-sectorial community of practice for audience development and engagement set up through the ADESTE dissemination and exploitation, culminated in a final conference that was organised in March 2016 in Bilbao and San Sebastián and attended by over 130 participants, "The Future of Audience Development: Research, Training, and Practice". It gave a clear understanding of how ADESTE turned more and more into a ‘trigger for change’ in the European cultural sector: to help professionals become effective ‘audience developers’ means to contribute to an organisational change where audiences are at the centre of their management system and to re-define their role in societies.
Recognition, transparency, certification
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation
Information and Communication
description of new occupation profiles
program or curricula
The first research phase coordinated by Fondazione Fitzcarraldo, IT, led to the delivery of:
• Data base of European experts on audience development
• Map of the European training paths and practices
Research findings have been embedded in the two reports under the leadership of Deusto University, ES:
• EUROPEAN OCCUPATIONAL STANDARD PROFILE OF THE AUDIENCE DEVELOPER, report available to download from the project website in English, Italian, French, Danish and Spanish:
• REPORT ON NEW TRAINING NEEDS available to download only in English from the project website: http://www.adesteproject.eu/report-new-training-needs
The phase of design of pilot training for AD led to the definition of a
• Training toolkit of formal and informal VET practices, paths and actions for AD
A first set of resources to implement a training programme in AD that was refined after the organization of the intensive “Train the Trainers” session, organized from 17-24 April 2015 in London with participants from Denmark, Italy, Poland, Spain, and the United Kingdom.
The ADESTE piloting was a 10-month training involving 65 cultural professionals (trainees) and 12 trainers from 5 European countries from May 2015 to February 2016. A series of 6 intensive workshops were organized for each piloting group. The results of the piloting were embedded in the development of the
• SET OF GUIDELINES FOR AN EFFECTIVE VOCATIONAL TRAINING FOR THE EUROPEAN AUDIENCE DEVELOPER, a report available in French, Danish, English, Spanish and Italian to download from the project website: http://www.adesteproject.eu/guidelines-set-guidelines-effective-vocational
Parallel to the pilot training, the evaluation aimed at understanding whether the training in relation to specific areas of knowledge transfer provided participants with the tools to both undertake ‘audience development’ and pass this knowledge and processes on to others. Evaluation was undertaken not ‘to’ but ‘with’ partners, therefore using an approach based on Grounded Research designed to encourage participants to openly discuss areas of the project and then to group their responses around the stated aims. Its main results are presented in the:
• ADESTE EVALUATION FRAMEWORK report: http://www.adesteproject.eu/adeste-evaluation-framework
This document illustrates the results of the process aimed at evaluating the ADESTE innovative training collecting feedbacks from trainers and trainees. The document will be of interested for many VET institutions and cultural organisations interested in audience development skills and training.
• The final narrative report "Steps towards a good audience practice: following the learnings of the ADESTE project" describes the journey behind the ADESTE project. Its articles touch on a variety of aspects in the project and the learnings generated from it. This e-book was made possible by the great efforts and commitment of the partnering institutions and all the experts involved: http://www.adesteproject.eu/steps-towards-good-audience-practice-following.