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Center For Audience Research & Evaluation

aerial photo of Crystal Bridges architecture

Helping organizations learn, grow, and create better audience experiences through data

Who We Are

Nestled within the heart of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, we’re a leading, one-of-a-kind team of research and data experts who know firsthand how nonprofit arts and cultural institutions function and thrive.

As a large-scale museum dedicated to serving audiences of all backgrounds, we’re leveraging our internal expertise to plan, develop, and execute research and evaluation studies to support external organizations—no matter their size or location.

Let’s just say we agree with the phrase “it takes one to know one.”

What’s Your Story?

cropped view of african american man writing something on paper in clipboard

Maybe you need to know more about who’s engaging with your programs, or maybe you’re swimming in a sea of grant applications and need some systems that set you up for success.

Whatever you need, and wherever your organization lives in the arts and culture world, we’re here for you. We’ve helped community centers, libraries, museums of all kinds, and more tackle research and evaluation challenges of every shape and size with bespoke solutions. We specialize in listening to our clients’ exact needs and helping them find data-driven success in the areas that matter most.

We’d love to hear how we can do the same for you.

How We Can Help You

Knowing your audience is essential to growing your impact. That’s where we come in. We’re here to help your organization make informed decisions through straightforward, easy-to-understand data.

Our services include:


Whether you’re looking to measure the impact of an initiative or seeking a grant-funded opportunity that needs evaluation support, we can help you gather important data about your:

  • Audience and membership
  • Programs, events, and exhibitions
  • Organization and workplace
  • …and more!

Learning Research

We investigate critical issues of education relating to a range of audiences. We hone our expertise and apply intellectual curiosity to:

  • Conduct literature reviews
  • Create and test a hypothesis
  • Synthesize research
  • Support knowledge translation and organization growth

Capacity Building & Support

We host workshops or provide one-on-one consultation around topics such as:

  • Evaluation 101
  • Data collection
  • Data analysis
  • Survey software

Who We’ve Worked With

…and many more!

Success Stories

Dad and daughter artmaking

Audience Studies

Curious to know more about the people you serve? We’ve launched and led this work for art museums across the country and other organizations like historic homes and community centers. It’s vital to test internal assumptions around who walks through your space, and data is the answer.

Our studies are set up to compare to regional and national benchmarks so that you can identify where to put your efforts.

a crowd of people outside on the momentary green on a sunny day

Festival Evaluation

We worked with the Momentary to evaluate the experience and attendee demographics of the multi-day FreshGrass | Bentonville Festival in Bentonville, AR.

Project stakeholders used this information to understand the extent to which the festival reached Northwest Arkansas community members and how future festivals could be improved.

Exhibition Evaluation

We worked with the Westmoreland Museum of American Art in Greensburg, PA to conduct front-end and summative evaluation studies for the Border Cantos | Sonic Border exhibition.

Front-end focus groups helped the museum plan programming and connect with community members early, and summative interviews connected with these individuals and others after they experienced the exhibition. Findings helped the museum report the exhibition’s impact to funders and learn lessons for future installations.

a visitor carries a baby while looking at art on the salon hang wall

Multi-Year Impact Evaluation

We are the external evaluators for Art Bridges Foundation and have developed a multi-year vision for measuring impact. This includes a suite of studies and initiatives about partner institutions and their participating communities.

Work Samples

Vitality Arts Project Cross-Site Evaluation (2024)
An outline of the project scope and our research approach, including examples of our survey and interview questions.

Bridging Insights (May 2023)
A staff newsletter providing a practical summary and synthesis of an academic peer-reviewed article pertaining to research outcomes in museum settings.

Crystal Bridges and the Momentary Audience Report (2022)
An analysis of audience engagement changes over time and demographics of guests at Crystal Bridges and the Momentary.


Border Cantos Exhibition Summative Evaluation Report (2017)
A report including front-end and summative evaluation results, key findings from both, and a summary of exhibition attendee demographics.

Let’s Connect — And Make Connections Together

Ready to measure and grow your organization’s impact? Drop us a line to get the conversation started.