The ‘Prosper’ programme – researching business support for cultural and creative organisations


Arts Council England has commissioned (£400,000) a consortium of Creative United, Centre for Business in Society, the Arts Marketing Association, and Access (The Foundation for Social Investment) to research and deliver the Prosper business support programme


CBiS share of circa £50,000


CBiS (Nick Henry, David Jarvis, Kevin Broughton, Victoria Barker)

Creative United, Arts Marketing Association, Access Foundation


The CBiS research project will:

  • Research the needs and provision of business support among cultural organisations through a literature and evidence review, including developing a compendium of business support provision via a mapping exercise.
  • Evaluate the Prosper business support programme via a ‘logic model’ of inputs, outputs, outcomes and impact, using pre- and post-intervention diagnostic tools, client journeys, case studies and learning groups.
  • Support the wide sharing of outcomes, achievements and lessons learnt through the reporting, capacity building and dissemination activities of the consortium partners.
  • Provide recommendations on future investment in and design of business support for the arts and culture sector

The Prosper programme is a 15 month programme, launched in 2017, which aims to strengthen the resilience and investment readiness of arts organisations, museums and libraries in England. The programme plans to improve resilience by growing capacity the capacity of cultural organisations to attract new business, investment and audiences. It will do this by providing free one-to-one business advice, workshops, masterclasses, webinars and establish an online business support resource.


The Centre for Business in Society welcomes the opportunity to continue its partnership with Creative United on the Prosper programme. Delivering research with impact, our expertise will design and deliver research and evaluation to gauge the national picture for the provision of business support for arts and culture, share learning on what works with the sector, and support future policy design.

Dr Nick Henry, Principal Investigator, CBiS