Evaluating a new approach to place-based cultural and creative investment, the Cultural Development Fund

Steer Economic Development has been commissioned to undertake a programme of outcomes monitoring and impact evaluation for the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport’s (DCMS) new £20 million Cultural Development Fund. The fund was announced in 2018 in the Creative Industries Sector Deal, which forms part of the UK Industrial Strategy, and marks a step change in how the Government is investing in culture. 

Towns and cities were invited to bid for funding for local cultural plans tailored to their strengths and needs, with the goal of using investment in heritage, culture and creativity as a catalyst for regeneration. The successful areas were Grimsby, Plymouth, the Kent Thames Estuary, Wakefield and Worcester.
Find out more about the Fund on the UK Government website.

Our team will be working with the DCMS, and its key delivery partner Arts Council England, to develop an understanding of the outcomes obtained by the Fund across all projects, establish the best approach to evaluate the impact of the Fund on economic growth and deliver this analysis across the next three years. This will involve: 

  • Establishing an outcomes monitoring framework and aligned data collection process;
  • Working alongside successful areas throughout the delivery phase to provide analysis demonstrating the extent to which expected outcomes are being/have been realised;
  • Scoping an approach to ex-post evaluation that will allow for identification of causality; and
  • Delivering a final impact analysis.

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