Community Engagement: Ensuring the Future of the Arts

Recorded On: 04/18/2019

image About this Webinar

Nonprofit arts organizations are facing an existential crisis stemming from skyrocketing expenses, rapidly changing demographics, and vastly altered social expectations. Community engagement is a critical tool for achieving, at a minimum, viability. This webinar will address the following content:

  • Definitions: The conflation of audience development, audience engagement, and community engagement continues to be a significant roadblock to growth. They are all valuable but they are all substantially different from each other. It’s vital to understand how each can build an arts organization.
  • Effective Engagement: Once you understand what community engagement is, it is necessary to adhere to basic principles of relationship building to maximize the work’s benefit both to the arts organization and the community.
  • Engagement and Marketing: Community engagement should not be an add-on, optional afterthought for arts organizations. Instead, it provides insights that can (and, arguably, must) make the work of virtually all management functions significantly more productive. We will focus here–briefly given the time constraints–on marketing.

Learning Objectives

Participants will:

  • Be able to articulate the differences among audience development, audience engagement, and community engagement.
  • Be able to apply principles of effective community engagement to evaluate community engagement projects
  • Be able to use understanding of the principles of effective community engagement to evaluate how community-focused (and therefore effective) arts marketing materials are.

Doug Borwick

CEO, ArtsEngaged

Doug Borwick is author of Engaging Matters, a blog for ArtsJournal, author/editor of Building Communities, Not Audiences: The Future of the Arts in the U.S. and author of Engage Now! A Guide to Making the Arts Indispensable. One of the country's leading advocates for the arts and community engagement Dr. Borwick has served as keynote speaker and workshop presenter at conferences across the U.S. and Canada as well as in Australia, Beijing, and Singapore. Notably, he has been featured speaker for statewide arts gatherings in Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Wisconsin as well as for the Canadian Arts Summit in Banff, Alberta. Barry Hessenius, author of Barry’s Blog and former Director of the California Arts Council and former President of the California Assembly of Local Arts Agencies, has described him as “the spokesperson for the importance and value of community engagement. [He] provides tools and thinking to improve your organization's operations in this area.”

Dr. Borwick is past President of the Board of the Association of Arts Administration Educators, an international organization of higher education programs in the field. For three decades he served as Director of the Arts Management and Not-for-Profit Management Programs at Salem College in Winston-Salem, NC. Dr. Borwick is CEO of Outfitters4, Inc., providing management services for nonprofits and of ArtsEngaged, offering training and consultation services to artists and arts organizations seeking to more effectively engage with their communities. Dr. Borwick holds the Ph.D. in Music Composition from the Eastman School of Music and is an award-winning member of ASCAP. 

Twitter: @arts_engaged and @DougBorwick  

Website: and www.


Community Engagement: Ensuring the Future of the Arts Webinar
E-Learning Survey
Thank you for taking the time to complete our survey, your feedback will help us improve our programs! You must register to access.