Indigo and pointOne have released the results of Act Green, a joint piece of research created to gain a greater understanding of cultural audience attitudes towards the role of cultural organisations in tackling the climate emergency.
11,682 audience members responded to the survey which was sent out by 58 cultural organisations in the UK during May 2022.
The responses from 11,682 audience members to the Act Green survey show that:
- 86% of cultural audiences are worried about the impact of the climate crisis – 10% higher than the general population (compared with results of a recent ONS survey*).
- 94% have made changes to their lifestyle – compared to 79% of the general population.
- 77% think cultural organisations have a responsibility to influence society to make radical change to address the climate emergency.
- Only 17% think cultural organisations currently place ‘great importance’ on playing an active role in tackling climate change – although a further 57% say they place ‘some importance’ on it.
- More than 90% of audiences expect organisations to ensure their buildings are as energy efficient as possible, avoid single use plastics and use materials from reused or recycled sources for building sets.
- Nearly 3 in 4 audience members would be open to suggestions of more sustainable food choices at cultural venues, while 65% would consider using public transport rather than driving to access a reduced ticket price.
- More than half of audience members say they would be ‘quite likely’ to support a fundraising initiative to improve the ongoing biodiversity of the venue and almost a third would support the development of artistic work exploring climate issues.
Indigo CEO Katy Raines says:
“It is really encouraging to see the level of importance that cultural audiences are placing on the climate emergency. The results from Act Green clearly show that audiences expect the cultural organisations they attend and support to lead the way when it comes to sustainability, managing buildings more efficiently, making changes to front of house operations and challenging people to think differently by tackling climate themes on their stages.
“And audiences are willing to play their part too, getting involved in audience-focused initiatives from travel to food choices. The responses from younger audiences in particular offer a real opportunity for cultural organisations to build relationships with a new generation of theatre goers who are passionate about climate activism. I hope this signals the beginning of a new wave of supporters, advocates and volunteers to support organisations to meet sustainability goals.”
pointOne CEO Steven Rolfe says:
“In supporting the Act Green research, we were hopeful that it would signal an active interest and commitment from audiences around the subject of climate change and climate activism. Thankfully, it would seem that the pandemic years have not dulled the momentum for climate activism nor lessened its appeal to audiences; both young and old want to see their cultural organisations leading the way with practical changes, operationally as well as on stage.
As EPoS suppliers to the cultural sector, we are always striving to improve our sustainability credentials and keen to work with like-minded operators to meet their sustainability goals. We hope this research will prompt organisations to reflect on their own operations and utilise the excellent resources available (such as the Theatre Green Book and Julie’s Bicycle Creative Green Tools) to support their own journey towards a sustainable future.”
Cultural organisations in the UK, including theatres, arts centres, festivals, touring companies, museums and galleries, were invited to participate in the Act Green research. The research was free for cultural organisations in the UK to take part.
Organisations were each provided with a unique link to send out to a recommended sample of around 5,000 of their previous attenders. They were provided with a link to see the results from their own organisation in real time, and the results from all organisations were then aggregated to form the baseline data set.
The survey ran from 9 – 29 May and during that three-week period, 11,682 responses were gathered through 58 cultural organisations.