- Executive Director of the Cultural Policy Center
Before taking the helm at the Cultural Policy Center in 2009, Betty Farrell was associate director of the Master of Arts Program in the Social Sciences and a senior lecturer in the Social Science Division at UChicago.
Her recent work on the cultural sector has included the book, Entering Cultural Communities: Diversity and Change in the Nonprofit Arts, co-edited with Diane Grams (Rutgers University Press, 2008), a study of 85 nonprofit cultural organizations across the U.S. and their ongoing strategies to increase audience participation in the arts, as well as the research report, “Demographic Change and the Future of Museums” (American Association of Museums, 2010).
At the CPC, Farrell has organized public symposia, research presentations, and a weekly workshop series on topics of broad relevance to the cultural community. She has cultivated an informal partnership with a consortium of international arts consultants, under the name of “CultureLab,” with the goal of spurring innovative practice and critical thinking for the cultural field. She teaches a yearly graduate research practicum at the Harris School of Public Policy Studies that immerses students in real-world cultural policy projects dealing with some of the most pressing issues affecting the cultural sector.
She earned a PhD in sociology at Harvard University.