External Organizations

The Alliance for the Arts in Research Universities (a2ru) recommends these examples as they relate to the advancement of a growing movement that reaches beyond STEM and STEAM initiatives and into the future of student-led innovation at the research university level.

Arts Education Partnership

The Arts Education Partnership is entirely focused on K-12 now but is the impetus and home for a good deal of valuable research that’s relevant to art-making in the university years as well.

Creative Campus

“Creative Campus” is a proprietary name for a grant program funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (DDCF) and founded and administered by DDCF, the Association of Performing Arts Presenters (APAP), and Major University Presenters (MUPS). This grant program emerged from a meeting of the American Assembly at Columbia University in 2004 entitled, “The Creative Campus: The Training, Sustaining, and Presenting of the Performing Arts in American Higher Education.” The purpose of DDCF’s “Creative Campus Innovations Grant Program” is “to identify, support, and document cross-campus interdisciplinary collaborations that integrate the work of performing arts presenters in the academy and the surrounding community.” Find information about funded projects and upcoming funding availability here.

International Council of Fine Arts Deans

The International Council of Fine Arts Deans (ICFAD) is a vehicle through which members share information and ideas that enhance the leadership of Deans and Associate Deans, Provosts and Associate Provosts, University Presidents and other Arts Executives in Higher Education. Founded in 1964, the ICFAD membership is comprised of more than 400 deans and arts executives in higher education throughout North America and around the world. ICFAD is the only organization focusing exclusively on issues that impact Deans and Associate Deans of all creative areas in higher education including fine and performing arts, arts education, art history, architecture and communication.

League of European Research Universities

The League of European Research Universities (LERU) is an association of 21 leading research-intensive universities that is committed to pushing the frontier of innovative research. LERU advocates the values of education through awareness of the frontiers of human understanding, the creation of new knowledge through basic research and innovation in society, and the promotion of research across a broad front in partnership with industry and society at large.


Leonardo/The International Society for the Arts, Sciences and Technology (Leonardo/ISAST) is a nonprofit organization that serves the global network of distinguished scholars, artists, scientists, researchers and thinkers through their programs focused on interdisciplinary work, creative output and innovation. For more information click here.

Partnership for 21st-Century Skills

The Partnership for 21st-Century Skills (P21 for short) is a high-powered consortium of education and business leaders who support K-12 educational initiatives that enrich the traditional 3Rs with the “4Cs”: Critical thinking and problem solving, Communication, Collaboration, and Creativity and innovation. The materials they’ve developed are valuable resources, and the partners can be powerful allies for our mission.

President’s Committee on Arts and Humanities

The President’s Committee on Arts and Humanities (PCAH) is freely appointed by the president and does not require the congressional approval needed for the heads of the National Endowments for the Arts (NEA) and the Humanities (NEH). The weight of PCAH’s activities and recommendations have varied over the years. In May 2011, President Obama’s PCAH issued a valuable report titled “Reinvesting in Arts Education: Winning America’s Future Through Creative Schools.” Focusing on K-12 education, the report provides a good overview of research, arguments, and knowledge gaps regarding arts integration in American education.

Project Zero

Founded in 1967, Harvard’s Project Zero has generated some of the most important research on the impact of arts education in pre-K-12 students. The website is a rich source of information.

Strategic National Arts Alumni Project

The Strategic National Arts Alumni Project (SNAAP) is an annual online survey designed to assess and enhance the impact of arts-school education. SNAAP is a project of the Indiana University Center for Postsecondary Research (home of the National Survey of Student Engagement) in collaboration with the Vanderbilt University Curb Center for Art, Enterprise, and Public Policy. SNAAP partners with degree-granting institutions to administer the survey to its arts graduates. If your school is not participating in the survey, see about getting it on board. This is one of the most important and far-reaching explorations of the impact of art-school education ever.


XSEAD is a large-scale multisite initiative supported by the National Science Foundation. The goal of this work is to develop technology solutions to supporting networks of creativity and to build understanding of the communities collaborating across traditional disciplines. It does this by delivering an online community platform for those working across disciplines: design, the arts, engineering and science. Aiming to establish a cohesive view of the field, it offers four key layers; each addressing a specific need of the emerging interdisciplinary art-science community. The community section enables rapid dissemination, discussion and critique of current and completed projects through community contribution. Showcase provides a curated representation of highly influential work to demonstrate value and impact of collaborating across disciplinary bounds. The resource section offers extensive databases of content of collective value. Finally, the forthcoming knowledge layer will offer a venue for multimodal documentation of research outcomes and rich modes of integrative scholarship.