In recent years, the National Endowment for the Arts research agenda has focused on yielding new knowledge about the value and impact of the arts. Through the National Endowment for the Arts Research Labs (NEA Research Labs), we seek to extend this agenda and its impact by cultivating a series of transdisciplinary research partnerships, grounded in the social and behavioral sciences, to produce and report empirical insights about the arts for the benefit of arts and non-arts sectors alike.
Each NEA Research Lab will define its own research agenda, conduct a research program to implement that agenda, and prepare reports that will contribute substantively to a wider understanding of one of three areas of special interest to the National Endowment for the Arts:
- The Arts, Health, and Social/Emotional Well-Being
- Therapeutic Approaches and Benefits
- Non-Therapeutic Approaches and Benefits
- The Arts, Creativity, Cognition, and Learning
- The Arts, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation
Priority will be given to applications that show capacity to design and implement quasi-experimental or experimental studies (using primary and/or secondary data sources) with theory-driven research questions and methodologies that will yield important information about the impact of the arts within the selected topic area.
Competitive applications will take into account any extant research that serves as a basis for a theoretical framework and helps to motivate the proposed project. This program also welcomes novel and promising research approaches, such as rigorous analyses of organizational or social networks and/or social media data. In addition, there is interest in translational research that moves scientific evidence toward the development, testing, and standardization of new arts-related programs, practices, models, or tools that can be used easily by other practitioners and researchers.