Specialising in evaluation, communication and training for cultural organisations.
Since going freelance in 2008, I’ve worked with a range of museums, galleries, libraries and archives to build in-house expertise, understand audiences and develop insight.
I mainly provide independent evaluation and research, communication advice and training for museums, galleries, libraries, archives and heritage sites. I also work with theatres, arts venues and artists who run individually funded arts projects.
I’m interested in creating connections. Whether that’s bringing audiences and organisations closer together, helping staff to work more productively, or discovering new insight through research and evaluation. I often write about my life as a freelancer on my blog – from my experience as an independent evaluator, through to tips and advice about user and non-user consultation, audience development and arts marketing approaches.
Previously voted one of the top 50 freelancers in the UK and an IPSE Ambassador of the Year Finalist, I’m a Member of the Market Research Society, Arts Marketing Association and Visitor Studies Group.
How I work
It’s not my style to work at arms-length. Past clients will tell you I work with, rather than for, them.
As freelancers we need to take an environmentally conscious approach to business. Read my approach to green freelancing and how sustainability is embedded into what I do.
I believe that it’s important to take care – whether that’s in my evaluation work with audiences and participants, or when working with clients. I agree communication boundaries with clients from the outset.
I work on projects across the cultural sector. This means I share ideas and learning between different art forms. Where possible I blog about my work. And can often be found presenting at conferences, seminars or regional meet-ups.
I invest in continual professional development every year. I like to stay up-to-date with the latest thinking and knowledge, which I can use and share with my clients.
I help organisations find solutions rather than focus on what hasn’t worked before. I’m a can-do person in my personal and professional life.
Efficiency and integrity
I’m never without a list. I use a range of online systems to manage projects as well as my time. This means I can be transparent. I work with clients who have a similar approach to integrity, especially around contracting and payment.
Respect and inclusion
I take an inclusive approach to everything I do, whether that’s in facilitated workshops or consultation projects. I work with clients who share the same ethos of respect and inclusion as me.
Marge’s work to deliver a complex evaluation of the Engaging Libraries programme for Carnegie UK was outstanding. The pandemic led to many changes in the programme’s timetable and delivery, however Marge worked with flexibility to ensure that the evaluation tools she had designed worked in the new digital context, with a commitment to “measuring what matters”. Marge will inspire you to think about evaluation differently and creatively. She brought her wide ranging experience from the arts and cultural sectors to our library and higher education focussed programme to stretch participants and Carnegie UK staff. Her enthusiasm, attention to detail and friendly challenge made her a pleasure to work with. We would not hesitate to work with her again and to recommend her robust, independent evaluation skills.
Thank you very much for undertaking such a valuable evaluation of our We Face Forward programme. The findings have been a great help, both to us as an organisation, and in reporting back to our funders.