The Role of the Arts during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Bradbury A, Warran K, Mak H W & Fancourt D. The Role of the Arts during the COVID-19 Pandemic. London; 2021.


This report, published by University College London (UCL) and funded by the Arts Council, examined the complex role of the arts during the Covid-19 pandemic by interviewing 138 participants who identified with one or more of the following groups: keyworkers, adults with long-term conditions, adults with mental health conditions, older adults, parents of young children and younger adults aged 18-24.

The report found that:

  • The arts have played a crucial role in providing psychological and social support during the pandemic for these groups – 68% of people reported that the arts affected them positively during the pandemic
  • Individuals used the arts to distract themselves from the pandemic; connect with themselves emotionally and on a deeper level; engage creatively and learn new skills; and connect with others – 1 in 5 people increased arts activity and engagement during the pandemic
  • These engagements with the arts improved mental health, wellbeing and aspects of physical health, and provided opportunities to build social capital in the form of social support
  • People from lower income and lower education groups have been reached more (via engagement with the arts) during the pandemic
  • People from ethnic minority backgrounds were 80-90% more likely to engage with digital arts activity during the pandemic
External Link

Read the full Report

This Report is available in its entirety as a downloadable PDF document.


Did you find this resource useful?

As a registered charity we are only able to continue to provide the information and resources found on this site if we continue to receive charitable donations and grants. If you found this resource useful, then please consider donating.