How long is a piece of string? Traditional approaches to assessing the impact of cultural events have focused on those metrics that are more easily measurable such as financial expenditure and business benefits. Qualia provides a more holistic approach to capturing the intangible impacts of cultural events such as mood, feelings and engagement. It provides a mechanism for capturing and displaying complex data and audience feedback.

Qualia ‘harvests’ audience data from a range of sources, such as Social Networking API’s (such as Facebook and Twitter), venue ‘hotspots’ (audio monitoring, smile recognition and GPS tracking). Qualia captures qualitative metrics that provide feedback on how an audience ‘feels’.

Qualia will develop a greater understanding of the application of social media as a source of empirical data to inform the measurement of cultural impact.

Research findings will help to develop a greater understanding of the sometimes less tangible impacts of the arts on society. Alongside the technical development, the conceptual and methodological frameworks for measuring arts impacts using existing digital data will be developed. This project will generate a momentum that will help other arts organisations to deal with the challenges and opportunities of digitally interacting with their audiences.


Any analytical system is only as good as its data. Developing valid evaluation and feedback questions has been an essential aspect of the Qualia project. The Qualia platform incorporates carefully designed questions based on the state of the art in survey methodology.

In order to ensure that Qualia-generated evaluation data can be used with the most powerful statistical tests, Likert scale questions are used with a seven-point scale. Dr Eric Jensen has led the development of the evaluation questions and methodology. Jensen lectures on survey methodology and statistics at the University of Warwick


Qualia was developed in collaboration with Nathan Gale at Intercity Studio. Commissioned to design the visual language underpinning the Qualia platform Nathan’s graphic protocols and colour coding run through all the Qualia tools and infographics.