Americans for the Arts Survey (2016-2017)
The City of Lynchburg and the James River Council for the Arts & Humanities (JRCAH), have joined the Arts & Economic Prosperity® 5, a national study measuring the economic impact of nonprofit arts and culture organizations and their audiences. The research study is conducted by Americans for the Arts, the nation’s nonprofit organization advancing the arts and arts education. It is the fifth study over the past 20 years to measure the impact of arts spending on local jobs, income paid to local residents, and revenue generated to local and state governments.
According to Americans for the Arts’ most recent national study, the nonprofit arts industry generated $135.2 billion in total economic activity and supported 4.1 million full-time equivalent jobs during 2010, resulting in $22.3 billion in federal, state and local government revenues. The $135.2 billion total included $61.1 billion in spending by arts organizations and $74.1 billion in event-related spending by their audiences on items such as meals, local transportation and overnight lodging. Complete details about the fiscal year 2010 study are available at www.AmericansForTheArts.org/EconomicImpact.
As one of nearly 300 study partners across all 50 states plus the District of Columbia, Lynchburg partners will collect detailed financial data about our local nonprofit arts and culture organizations such as our theater and dance companies, museums, festivals, and arts education organizations.
The Results Are In!
The nonprofit arts and culture industry generates more than $10.8 million in annual economic activity in the City of Lynchburg—supporting 251 full-time equivalent jobs and generating $962,000 in local and state government revenues, according to the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 national economic impact study. Read the press release or download the full report.
Why is it important to understand the economic value of the arts?
Previous studies have shown that the average attendee spends $24.60 per person, per event, beyond the cost of admission. Those studies have also shown that, on average, 32 percent of arts attendees travel from outside the county in which the arts event took place, and that those cultural tourists typically spend nearly $40 per person—generating important revenue for local businesses and demonstrating how the arts drive revenue for other businesses in the community.
“Many people don’t think of nonprofit arts organizations as businesses,” said Bruce Christian of NB Handy and Advisory Committee member of the City’s Arts & Cultural grant program. “This study will make clear that the arts are a formidable industry in our community—employing people locally, purchasing goods and services from local merchants, and helping to drive tourism and economic development.”
How it works:
We will collect surveys from attendees at arts events using a short, anonymous questionnaire that asks how much money they spent on items such as meals, parking and transportation, and retail shopping specifically as a result of attending the event.
Surveys will be collected throughout calendar year 2016. The results of the study will be released in June of 2017.
Partners and Sponsors:
Americans for the Arts’ Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study is supported by The Ruth Lilly Fund of Americans for the Arts. In addition, Americans for the Arts’ local and statewide study partners are contributing both time and a cost-sharing fee support to the study. For a full list of the nearly 300 Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study partners, visit www.AmericansForTheArts.org/AEP5Partners.
The Lynchburg Office of Economic Development is the City of Lynchburg’s economic development agency. With decades of combined experience, Economic Development staff leads business retention, attraction and new business development initiatives for the City. The Office manages the City’s James River Arts & Cultural District program to support and promote cultural activity as an economic development driver in the City’s historic core. Learn more at www.opportunitylynchburg.com.
The Greater Lynchburg Community Trust provides for the administration and the investment of gifts and bequests for the benefit of the City of Lynchburg and the Counties of Amherst, Appomattox, Bedford and Campbell. Needs served are broad in scope including human services to children, youth, the needy, and the elderly; education; health; the arts; and the humanities! Learn more at www.lynchburgtrust.org.