Theatre arts in UK City of Culture evaluation practices: the case for headphone verbatim

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1 Citation (Scopus)
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Purpose: This article's purpose is to examine the case for the use of the theatre arts in the evaluation of UK City of Culture (UKCC) programmes, specifically headphone verbatim. Design/methodology/approach: Through an analysis of secondary evidence, supported by some primary research, this article analyses past and present evaluation practices surrounding UKCC programmes and the case for headphone verbatim to be included as a method of gathering and distributing research data. The article also observes the challenges in how data may be disseminated through verbatim theatre performance practices, given the limited examples of its use in this context. Findings: The author argues that the theatre arts can provide a different way of knowing and understanding the impacts of UKCC projects on the host city. Specifically, that headphone verbatim can bring an experiential perspective that is rarely if ever captured by existing UKCC evaluation methods and policymaking in general. Originality/value: This article details an innovative method of evaluating social impacts associated with UKCC projects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)159-173
Number of pages15
JournalArts and the Market
Issue number3
Early online date1 Aug 2023
Publication statusPublished - 12 Oct 2023

Bibliographical note

This author accepted manuscript is deposited under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC) licence. This means that anyone may distribute, adapt, and build upon the work for non-commercial purposes, subject to full attribution. If you wish to use this manuscript for commercial purposes, please contact


  • Arts-based inquiry
  • headphone verbatim theatre
  • recorded delivery
  • UK City of Culture
  • Coventry
  • qualitative evaluation
  • methods of evaluation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts


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