Our methodology - Museums Association

Our methodology

The Sticks and Stones research project was launched in 2019 with the following aims:

  • To raise the profile of the issues of bullying and bullying behaviours within the sector
  • To signpost online information and support
  • To undertake ‘preliminary research’
  • To publish the research findings and recommendations

We received a huge response from people who were interested in getting involved or sharing their experiences.

Informal sessions across the nations developed our thinking and research scope, and this was further supported by testing during questionnaire development.

The research went live at our annual conference in October 2019 with an interactive session exploring existing research, support and personal reflection.

An anonymous online questionnaire was made available to anyone in the sector between 10 October and 16 December 2019, with 510 responses.

The questionnaire was divided into three parts:

  1. For those with lived experience of being bullied
  2. For those who had observed bullying behaviours – the focus of this published content relates to part 1
  3. Respondent profile information

Task and finish group

  • Tamsin Russell, Workforce Development Officer, Museums Association
  • Alexandra Woodall, Lecturer in Arts Management, University of Sheffield
  • Andy Bodle, Director of Operations and Human Resources, Royal Museums Greenwich
  • Alan Leighton, National Secretary, Prospect Union

The group’s work was supported by representatives from the Museums Association’s Ethics Committee; Anne-Marie Quigg, author and researcher in bullying in the arts; Museum Detox; DCN – Disability Collaborative Network for Museums; Museum Freelance and Front of House Museums. The group would like to thank them for their support and advice.

None of this could have been achieved without the honesty and participation of those who gave their voice to this research, who shared their experiences of bullying and the associated impacts it has had and continues to have on their lives; we thank you.