Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 Old

Arts and Culture Mean Business

On June 17, 2017, Americans for the Arts unveiled the results of Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 (AEP5), the most comprehensive economic impact study of the nation’s nonprofit arts and culture industry ever conducted.

Results of the study reveal the level of economic activity as well as the number of full-time jobs the arts industry generates. The study’s findings also show how much tax revenues the nonprofit arts sector produces.

“This study demonstrates that the arts are an economic and employment powerhouse both locally and across the nation,” said Robert L. Lynch, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts. “A vibrant arts and culture industry helps local businesses thrive and helps local communities become stronger and healthier places to live. Leaders who care about community and economic vitality can feel good about choosing to invest in the arts. Nationally as well as locally, the arts mean business.”

Key national results:

  • 341 study regions across 50 states and D.C.
  • Data collected from 14,439 organizations and 212,691 arts attendees
  • Nonprofit arts industry generated $166.3 billion of economic activity in 2015
  • Spending by arts and culture organizations = $63.8 billion
  • Event-related expenditures by audiences = $102.5 billion
  • Typical attendee spends $31.47 per person, over the cost of admission.

CultureWorks is excited to have led the effort in the Richmond and Tri-Cities region as one of 341 study regions that partnered with the Americans for the Arts to conduct the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study.

We are impressed by the national results and we are currently analyzing the results for the Richmond and Tri-Cities region. CultureWorks anticipates the release of local AEP5 results in late July.

We are confident that the results will validate that regionally arts and culture are a vital industry – supporting community well-being, generating revenue, creating jobs and attracting tourism.

From January 1, 2016 through February 28, 2017, CultureWorks partnered with local arts and culture organizations to collect nearly 1,000 audience-intercept surveys and collected detailed financial data from 82 local nonprofit arts and culture organizations across the region, such as theater and dance companies, museums, visual arts, and arts education organizations.  Local AEP5 activities are supported by The Cameron Foundation, The Community Foundation Serving Richmond and Central Virginia,  and The Robins Foundation.

“Richmond was recently named a Top 20 arts vibrant city in the US!   We have 200 plus arts and culture organizations and countless artists that work every day to make our region a vibrant place to live, work, and play.  This study shows that arts and culture is an economic engine not just across the US, but right here in the Richmond and Tri-Cities region.” said Scott Garka, CultureWorks’ President. ” Supporting arts and culture is about investing in economic development and jobs, it is about investing in our community.”

To learn more about the study, please visit www.americansforthearts.org/aep5.

"There is no other organization serving the City of Richmond and the surrounding region that supports individual artists and cultural entities as CultureWorks does."

"Your team finds imaginative ways to provide opportunities and exposure for large and small organizations."

"You guys are doing such a good job promoting the arts in the region in a fair way…it is VERY refreshing."

"CultureWorks is the glue that holds Richmond's arts and culture community together."

Emily Smith

1708 Gallery

"Thank you so much for believing in St. John's Church Foundation and for your trust. The grant has made a big difference in what we can accomplish"

"There is no other organization serving the City of Richmond and the surrounding region that supports individual artists and cultural entities as CultureWorks does."

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