customized economic impact study serviceAmericans for the Arts is the nation’s leading provider of studies that measure the economic impact of nonprofit arts and culture organizations and their audiences. We are able to study the impact of any organization or geographic region, including:
- Individual organizations, facilities, performances, or events
- Arts districts
- Cities, counties, or multi-county regions
- Entire states
What Is an Economic Impact Study?
Any time money changes hands there is a measurable economic impact. Nonprofit arts and culture organizations are employers, producers, and consumers. Their spending is far-reaching: they pay employees, purchase supplies, contract for services, and acquire assets within their community. In addition, unlike most industries, nonprofit arts and culture organizations leverage a significant amount of event-related spending by their audiences. For example, when patrons attend a cultural event they may pay to park their car, purchase dinner at a restaurant, shop in nearby stores, eat dessert after the show, and stay the night in a hotel (or pay a babysitter upon their return home). This spending generates commerce for local businesses.
Our proprietary research methodology enables our partners to measure—in a reliable and affordable manner—the impact of all this spending on four key areas of your economy:
- The number of full-time equivalent (FTE) jobs supported within your community
- The amount of household income (i.e., wages and salaries) paid to residents
- The amount of revenue generated for local (city and county) government
- The amount of revenue generated for your state government
Is a Customized Economic Impact Study Right for Your Community?
We work with any organization that has the resources to conduct an economic impact study—most importantly, the time and commitment to complete the data collection requirements. Our past study partners include:
- Individual facilities (e.g., performing arts centers, museums, and theaters)
- Arts councils, arts commissions, and departments of cultural affairs
- Economic development, community development, and planning agencies
- State arts agencies and statewide advocacy organizations
- Private foundations and community foundations
Why Use Americans for the Arts?
Becuase we have completed more than 400 customized economic impact studies in the past 10 years!
- You can compare your findings to the findings for the 182 communities that participated in our most recent national study, Arts & Economic Prosperity IV.
- Our studies employ a highly regarded input-output analysis that is the basis for two Nobel Prizes in economics (our economist will customize an econometric model specifically for your community).
- The findings from our studies are the most frequently cited statistics used to demonstrate the impact of the arts on our local, state, and national economies.
How Much Does a Customized Study Cost?
Our fees are partially subsidized by the Ruth Lilly Fund for Americans for the Arts, with the goal of providing all U.S. communities with affordable access to economic impact research about the nonprofit arts industry. While our fees are significant, it is important to note that the cost to hire a for-profit consultancy to conduct a study using similar methodology can be three to four times higher.
|Type of Region to be Studied||Study Participation Fee|
|Individual cultural organization, facility, or event||$3,500|
|Entire community (e.g., city, county, multi-region):|
|• Population fewer than 100,000||
|• Population of 100,000 or more||$8,500|
|Entire state||Starting at $15,000|
Sample Final Reports
- Individual Facility: Turtle Bay Exploration Park (Shasta County, CA)
- Arts District: Grand Center Arts District (St. Louis, MO)
- City: City of Tacoma, WA
- County: Buffalo County, NE
- Multi-County Region: Greater Washington, DC metropolitan region
- State: State of Wisconsin
- Economic Impact Fact Sheet and Sample Timeline
- Sample Project Contract
- Sample Audience Expenditure Survey
- Sample Organizational Expenditure Survey
Ready to Learn More?
To get answers to your questions—and to request a draft contract for your organization—contact Ben Davidson, Senior Director of Research Services, by phone at 202.371.2830 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We look forward to working with you to complete the economic impact study that will become your next critical advocacy and fundraising tool!