Call for Proposals

Exploring the evidence for cultural institutions’ relevance

The Connected Audience Conference 2022 will address the pressing issue of Public Value and Relevance. We invite you to join your colleagues from around the world to explore the role that cultural organizations can, do, and should play in our communities. The Conference will be virtual and take place over the week of April 25–29, 2022.

Four notable speakers will help to stimulate and inform conversations and participate in discussions.

Prof. Dr. Timo Meynhardt, is the Dr. Arend Oetker Chair of Business Psychology and Leadership at the Leipzig Graduate School of Management as well as the Director of the Center for Leadership and Values in Society at the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland. Prof. Meynhardt’s research focus is the field of public value and the application of the concept in business and administration. He has developed a Public Value Scorecard to measure public value creation along five dimensions. He brings important research and ideas from outside the cultural field to our discussion.

Lori Fogarty, is the Director and CEO of the Oakland Museum of California, a museum that has a strong commitment to social impact and creating social cohesion in its city. The Oakland Museum was born in 1969 in the shadow of racial division and protest in one of the most diverse cities in the world. Over the past decade, the museum has worked to diversify its board, staff, and audience, and has begun to measure the impact it is having on the well-being of its community; moving beyond traditional measures of attendance and financial benchmarks.

Dr. John H. Falk is Executive Director of the Institute for Learning Innovation and Sea Grant Professor Emeritus of Free-Choice Learning at Oregon State University. The author of over two dozen books in the areas of learning, ecology, and education, his newest book, The Value of Museums: Enhancing Societal Well-Being (Fall, 2021), specifically addresses the issues of relevance and value. Falk is the recipient of the Distinguished Career Award from the National Association for Research in Science Teaching, the Council of Scientific Society President’s Award for Educational Research, and the John Cotton Dana Award for Leadership by the American Alliance of Museums.

Dr. Vera Allmanritter is a political scientist and cultural manager. She is the Director of the Institute for Research on Cultural Participation (Institut für Kulturelle Teilhabeforschung | IKTf), founded in 2020 as part of Berlin’s Foundation for Cultural Education and Cultural Consulting (SKWK). In this role, she researches and publishes on cultural participation, cultural management, cultural marketing, cultural visitor research, audience development, and empirical research methods and has also taught on these topics at numerous universities. Previously, she was a research assistant at the University of Hildesheim, she worked at the Jewish Museum Berlin, was coordinator of the Centre for Audience Development at the Freie Universität of Berlin, and worked as a freelance cultural manager for many years.

Call for presentations and workshops

We are inviting proposals for hands-on workshops and panel presentations that present research findings or other direct evidence that informs effective policy and practice related to the following topics and questions:

  • How should we measure impact – on visitors, community and institutions?
  • What does it mean to be collaborative with one‘s community?
  • How can cultural institutions align their activities with BOTH mission and the needs of the community?
  • How do online experiences contribute to or distract from public value and relevance?
  • How does organizational culture influence community and societal relevance?

These questions and many more are fundamental to the sustainable future of cultural institutions. Join us as we seek to understand and build the kind of relationships with our publics that our missions promise and that our futures demand.

Registration for the conference will open in October.

Guidelines for Proposals
You may submit an individual presentation, or choose to organize a panel of 3 speakers. To be considered for inclusion in the Conference, individuals or panels should submit an abstract in English of no more than 250 words (individual presenter)/500 words (panel) and a CV/Bio (half a page) for each presenter to: by no later than 31 October 2021.

The conference organizers will select interesting and innovative session proposals and presentations, possibly bringing related topics together for a panel discussion.
Successful candidates must be committed to attending the whole conference. Again, please note that all presentations must be in ENGLISH, and not more than 12 minutes in length. For selected presentations and workshops a written paper (or PowerPoint presentation) is to be emailed to the Conference Coordinator at least 4 weeks before the start of the conference, on or before 25 March 2022.