Most Ontarians Believe Arts are Important to Quality of Life
October 20, 2010 -
The Ontario Arts Council (OAC)
has released the findings of The Arts And The Quality Of Life: The Attitudes Of Ontarians
, a commissioned survey conducted by Environics Research Group.
The findings show that a large majority of Ontarians believe that the arts are important to the quality of life in their community and to their own personal lives. The research also demonstrated how strongly these positive attitudes are held by Ontarians.
This is the first provincial survey of its kind since 1994, when a similar survey was commissioned by OAC. A comparison of responses across questions asked in both surveys found that the proportion of Ontarians with positive views on the arts and the quality of life has generally increased since 1994.
- 95 percent of Ontarians said that the arts enrich the quality of our lives;
- 89 percent believe that if their community lost its arts activities, people living there would lose something of value;
- 81 percent of Ontarians think that the arts are important to their own quality of life;
- 95 percent of Ontarians believe that the success of Canadian artists like singers, writers, actors and painters, gives people a sense of pride in Canadian achievement;
- 81 percent of Ontarians agree that the government should spend public dollars to support the arts.
“Regardless of how people felt personally about the arts, they still recognized the value of the arts in their community. There's a sense that the arts are seen as a public good,” says Kathryn Townshend, OAC’s Director of Research, Policy and Evaluation.
The arts as a public good
When asked who benefits more from the presence of the arts in their community, a large majority of Ontarians (64 percent) believe that it’s the community as a whole, rather than just those who attend arts activities.
Positive attitudes toward the arts across all regions and demographic groups
The survey also shows that a majority of Ontarians across all regions and demographic groups hold positive attitudes about the arts and the quality of personal and community lives. For example, large majorities of Ontarians living in each region of the province, and across all levels of education, agree that the arts are important to the quality of their own lives.
Read the Executive Summary
and the full Environics report
The report was based on the results of an omnibus survey conducted by Environics Research Group on behalf of the Ontarian Arts Council. The survey was conducted by telephone between February 22 and 28, and March 4 and 10, 2010. It examines the opinions of a probability sample of 1,000 adult residents of Ontario (aged 18 or older). The sample, which was stratified by gender, region and community size, is estimated to be accurate within approximately 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.