Research Briefings: Arts and Health

Find out more about how our arts and health research is linked to policy in Wales.

Increasing capacity for Arts and health innovation in Wales: Process and impact evaluation of the HARP Seed and Nourish programmes

We know that the arts can have a hugely positive impact on our health and wellbeing. However, we recognise that designing and embedding creative activities can be disconcerting, particularly in the company of a pandemic.  

We sought to find out how to meet these challenges, revealing opportunities here in Wales. Our methods included combined grant funding, network building, coaching, and research for arts and health innovators. 

The HARP project consisted of many varied teams, each applying vastly different approaches. Different cohorts were engaged by different art forms.  

Our data was collected through a wide range of methods: 

  • interviews, questionnaires,  
  • focus groups,  
  • administrative reports, 
  • social media posts. 

And it involved five groups of participants: 

  • the HARP delivery team,  
  • Professionals in HARP Teams,  
  • participants,  
  • public involvement advisors  
  • external stakeholders. 

Framework analysis was used in data analysis, which is centred around fixed research questions. This provides the analytical structure that is needed to understand the process and impact of embedded arts-based innovation within health and care systems.  

This series of research briefings aims to link research with policy: 

  • The arts and health interface,  
  • Social prescribing,  
  • Innovation,  
  • Measuring impact,  
  • Co-production and equality,  
  • Diversity and inclusion. 

The most relevant area of policy for this research is social prescribing, and more broadly cultural engagement.  

This is reflected within: 

And aligns with: 

both of which are founded upon models that recognise the impact of social aspects on health and wellbeing.