Arts & Culture Staffing Study

Arts and Culture Staffing Study MAPC Conference Room
Arts & Culture Staffing Study


Smart Growth & Regional Collaboration

Staffing Study: Regional Arts & Culture Responsibilities

In the fall of 2019, MAPC launched the Arts & Culture Staffing Study to support municipal and regional capacity building in the areas of arts, culture, design, and historic preservation. The study included a survey and interviews with municipal and regional staff whose job responsibilities pertain to arts, culture, design, and historic preservation.

Project partners participated in a virtual convening in May where MAPC shared survey findings and participants shared the impacts of COVID-19 on their work and their municipalities. The project will culminate in a convening in Fall 2020 and a report recommending strategies to maintain existing municipal arts and culture capacity in the wake of COVID-19 and to expand capacity as the region recovers from the pandemic.

This project is a collaboration between the Municipal Collaboration and Arts & Culture Departments at MAPC.

Questions? Contact Annis Sengupta at

Study Objectives

Identify shared challenges that could benefit from peer support or professional development facilitated by regional and state partners.

Help municipalities boost local capacity. Assistance could include:

  • Increasing access to professional development
  • Helping to develop shared service agreements between neighboring communities interested in hiring shared arts and culture staff
  • Developing sample position descriptions to support hiring

About the Survey

The survey was designed for staff that are employed on a full- or part-time basis by a Massachusetts municipal government to support arts and cultural activities in their communities. The survey defined arts and culture activities broadly and captured the diversity of ways that municipalities staff arts and culture.

Analysis of the survey is helping MAPC develop a broader understanding of the functions and responsibilities of municipal personnel working to support arts and cultural activities; and will ultimately help to identify and explore potential ways to build further arts and culture capacity at the municipal level.


November 6, 2019 Project kick-off event
November 2019
Staffing survey released
2020 Staffing survey closed
May 20, 2020
Staffing Survey Findings Meeting via Zoom Click here to download PowerPoint

Survey Snapshot

101 responses from individuals
representing 77 municipalities

6 in-depth follow-up interviews with survey respondents