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Arts and health: a framework for practitioners

The Aesop Public Health England Evaluation Framework: download the document here.

Some time ago Aesop identified the need for an evaluation framework for arts for health and wellbeing. A version for researchers was developed and published in the international journal, Arts and Health, in 2014. Thanks to a commission from Public Health England, a version for practitioners is now available.

The arts, including music, dance, theatre, visual arts and writing, are increasingly recognised as having the potential to support health and wellbeing. However, in order for arts to be included in commissioning of health and social care services, there needs to be robust evidence of their effectiveness, impacts and costs.

What this document does

This document, the first of it kind, has been published by Public Health England and endorsed by Arts Council England.

  • It provides guidance on appropriate ways to document the impacts of arts for health and wellbeing, whether through small scale project evaluations or large scale research studies.
  • It suggests a standard framework for reporting of project activities that will strengthen understanding of what works in specific contexts and enable realistic assessment and appropriate comparisons to be made between programmes.
  • It is intended for health commissioners, third sector organisations, trainers, funders, practitioners, managers, arts organisations, researchers and others with an interest in the development and evaluation of arts for health and wellbeing programmes.

I encourage you to share it with peers and anyone who may benefit from it.

The Aesop Public Health England Evaluation Framework: download the document here.

Tim Joss 
Founder and Chief Executive
Aesop