A crowded seated reception

Arts & Human Development Task Force

Beginning in 2011, the National Endowment for the Arts has convened a Federal Interagency Task Force on the Arts and Human Development to encourage more and better research on how the arts can help people reach their full potential at all stages of life. Task force members represent multiple units across federal government, including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Education, among others.

To date, the Task Force has met quarterly to share ideas and information about research gaps and opportunities for understanding the arts' role in improving health and educational outcomes throughout the lifespan. The Task Force has conducted a series of public webinars on compelling research and practices.  Additionally, the group has collaborated on reports, research announcements, and convenings about the arts and human development.  Task Force Members

Publications

Staying Engaged: Health Patterns of Older Americans Who Participate in the Arts
This report describes arts participation patterns of older adults (aged 55 and over) tracked by the 2014 Health and Retirement Study. The nationally representative sample is also analyzed for its.

The National Endowment for the Arts Guide to Community-Engaged Research in the Arts and Health
Responding to a need identified by the federal Interagency Task Force on the Arts and Human Development, the NEA commissioned this guide from the cognitive neuroscientist Julene Johnson, PhD, UCSF.

Podcasts

Dr. Nina Kraus
Dr. Nina Kraus is a professor of neurobiology at Northwestern University where she directs the Auditory Neuroscience Laboratory, also known as Brainvolts. She has made the study of how we biologically process sound her life’s work.
July 18, 2019

Akua Kouyate-Tate
Akua Kouyate-Tate is the Senior Director of Education at the Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts.  Wolf Trap is integrating art with fundamental science and math learning for young children and the data show significant results.
March 10, 2016

Convenings

The Office of Research & Analysis holds national gatherings with researchers and arts and community experts on the value and impact of the arts in all domains of American life, including health and well-being, community livability, and economic prosperity.

Webinars

Additional Resources

Additional research products and information sources linked to Task Force activities.