In 2019, the Arts Council launched phase one of a project to collect box office data from organisations in receipt of strategic funding and venues funding.
Our aim with this project is to report on patterns of attendance across the country so that you will have access to insight and intelligence on audience behaviour to support the work of your organisation. We will also partner with you to create profiles of the different types of organisations within the sector so we can build benchmark reports for you to identify how characteristics such as location and capacity impact on attendance. Finally, these reports will inform the development of Arts Council policy.
In a future phase of the project, we would like to integrate the box office data with the Arts Council arts activity reports so that you no longer have to enter this data manually.
What box office data is collected, how the data is compiled and what reports are produced has been guided informed by a prototype phase carried out in conjunction with 10 funded organisations, and five different box office systems.
2019 Box Office Data
The Arts Council are requesting all funded Arts Organisations to submit 2019 box office data, in March 2020. The Box Office data requested will not contain any personal information and is fully GDPR compliant. The Box Office data can be generated as a report with the assistance of your Box Office provider. A Data Sharing Agreement will be put in place between the Arts Council and each Arts Organisation, ensuring the data can only be used for the purposes of this Box Office project. Further details are below:
We have prepared a spreadsheet defining the Box Office data to be requested. The Spreadsheet is available to download here.
Data Sharing Agreement
We have drafted a data sharing agreement to cover the box office data to be included in the box office reports. This data sharing agreement defines what the data will be used for. The data sharing agreement should be reviewed and signed by senior management in each arts organisation, and returned at the same time as the box office data. The document is available to download here.
Data should be submitted to the Arts Council before 31st of March 2020.
How should data be submitted?
Data should be submitted using the Arts Council’s existing OnLine System (OLS). The same system used to apply for Arts Council funding.
To log in, use your organisation’s existing credentials.
The data sharing agreement should be submitted as per an Application Form
The box office data should be submitted as a .CSV file as supporting material.
How can the data be extracted from the Box Office system?
Users of Ticketsolve, Provenue Databox, Provenue Tickets.com, Spektrix and AdmitOne should make contact with your Box Office systems provider. They can support you in the data extract.
Users of other box office systems, including Eventbrite, should make contact with the Arts Council for further guidance.
Please contact email@example.com
Box Office Reports
The Box Office Reporting & Insights project will produce both national reports and individual comparative reports. Examples of the reports that can be produced are available to download.
In 2019, the reports will focus on box office data and trends.
In 2020, the box office reports will provide additional insights by:
categorising box office data using by art form type, and
understanding box office data in context, e.g. breaking down box office data in the context of community events, commercial events or other specific attributes.
To deliver these additional insights, 2020 box office data will need to be labelled.
2020 Box Office Data Labelling
We would like you to label events in your box office system for 2020 so that we can understand and compare box office data between groups of organisations. We would like you to use three different label types:
Art Forms – please label shows and events with an art form type. This may be similar to your Event Category.
Supplementary labels – please use supplementary labels to identify shows or events with specific characteristics, e.g. Community events, commercial events, events run on behalf of third parties.
AAR Activity Name – if you label your shows and events with the Activity Name used in your AAR report, the box office project can provide you with a report on Box Office data that will help populate your AAR.
More detailed instructions for each of the 3 labelling categories are available to download below:
Thank you to everyone that completed the survey asking for information on your box office system and how you use it.
The results of the survey have been sent out to all the organisations. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you participated in the survey and have not received a copy.
Labelling Arts Council events for 2019 data
In March 2019, we requested that Arts Organisations apply labelling to 2019 Box Office data. If you have applied the labelling, thank you for your effort, we will use this in the analysis.
If you have not applied labelling to 2019 data, no retrospective labelling is required.
Please contact email@example.com
What organisations are taking part in this project?
All organisations in receipt of strategic funding and venues funding that use box office systems.
What Arts Organisations have been involved in the Prototype phase?
10 organisations have been involved in the prototype phase of the project
We would like to thank each of the organisations and staff for their time and valuable input into the project. [Added November 2019]
What Box Office Systems have been reviewed during the Prototype phase?
The following 5 Box Office systems have been reviewed during the prototype phase:
We would like to thank the Box Office systems providers that have contributed to the project, in particular, Ticketsolve Provenue and Admit One.
Is participation in the box office data collection project a condition of funding?
Participation in the project is not a condition of funding. [Updated 16 April 2019]
Will the data collected as part of this project replace any of the existing data collection processes?
The box office data for 2019 is in addition to that provided via online services which is aggregated data by programme. The aim with box office data is to collect ticketing level data to provide a better understanding of audience behaviour. The longer-term goal is an integrated approach [Added 16 April 2019]
What are you going to do with the data?
We will use the data to build reports that will show you patterns of attendance across the country and allow you to compare box office data between organisations with the same profile (e.g.capacity of venue and type of location) and regionally.
How much data are you collecting?
For Phase one, we will collect box office attendance data for 2019 that will be analysed at a national and regional level and against a profile (e.g. location and capacity). No personal data on customers will be requested and we will be GDPR compliant. [Added 16 April 2019]
How is the project being managed?
Compass Informatics have been appointed to deliver the project following a public procurement process. Compass Informatics provide GIS and data analytic solutions to Irish organisations including the Heritage Council and the National Transport Authority.
A project advisory group has been set up to support the Arts Council in the delivery of the box office collection project over a period of two years beginning in September 2018. Group members provide advice at key stages in the project. The group members are:
Val Ballance, Head of Arts Centres, Arts Council
Aidan Burke, Corporate Services Director, Arts Council (Chair)
Shauna Lyons, Public Affairs and Marketing Director, IFI
Fergal McGrath, Director, Town Hall Theatre Galway
Celine Reilly, Box Office Manager, Kilkenny Arts Festival
Fionnuala Sweeney, Head of Film and Architecture, Arts Council
Karl Wallace, Head of Festivals and Events, Arts Council
Anna Walsh, Director, Theatre Forum
The project is overseen by a steering committee made up of the Arts Council senior management.