Creative cross-sectoral collaboration: A conceptual framework of factors influencing partnerships for arts, health and wellbeing

J.Puebla Fortier, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, A.Coulter, Arts & Health South West.

Paper published in Public Health, Volume 196, July 2021, Pages 146-149


Received 1 December 2020, Revised 8 April 2021, Accepted 13 May 2021, Available online 30 June 2021.


The objective of this study was to investigate the factors impacting cross-sectoral collaboration in arts, health and wellbeing programme, policy and strategy development in South West England.

Study design
The study used a participatory action research approach and qualitative methods in the context of a broader effort to develop a regional arts, health and wellbeing strategy.

Data collection methods included participant observation, semi-structured interviews, a focus group and feedback collected through collaborative online discussion documents. Data were coded using qualitative data analysis software and analysed using thematic analysis. Data were used inductively to develop the conceptual framework of key factors influencing cross-sectoral collaboration in arts, health and wellbeing.

Seven key factors that affect cross-sectoral collaboration for arts, health and wellbeing activities were derived from the data and analysis: value and legitimacy, relationships, policy and system complexity, power, capacity, resources and alignment. A conceptual framework shows how these factors relate to each other in multiple configurations and shape cross-sectoral collaborations.

There are increasing opportunities for organisations to partner on arts, health and wellbeing activities. This study highlights key factors influencing the ability to collaborate across sectors and to align with local and national policy agendas. The proposed conceptual framework offers a way to think holistically about how to design for and manage these collaborations.

Published in the latest edition of RSPH’s Public Health Journal and you can access it for free until August 19th here or download it below.

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