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Greater Worcester's Nonprofit Arts and Culture Industry Generates $125.7 Million in Economic Activity and Supports 4,062 Job Annually According to Americans for the Arts

For Immediate Release: 9/21/2017 2:56 pm

Worcester, MA (September 21, 2017) - The nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $125.7 million in annual economic activity in Greater Worcester - supporting 4,062 full-time equivalent jobs and generating $9.9 million in local and state government revenues, according to the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 national economic impact study. The most comprehensive economic impact study of the nonprofit arts and culture industry ever conducted in the United States, Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 was conducted by Americans for the Arts, the nation's leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education.

Results show that nonprofit arts and culture organizations spent $64.5 million during fiscal year 2015. This spending is far-reaching: organizations pay employees, purchase supplies, contract for services and acquire assets within their community. Those dollars, in turn, generated $46,052,000 in household income for local residents, $ 3,107,000 in local government revenue and $2,579,000 in state government revenue. More Information...

"In Worcester, we understand that art works. Worcester is home to world-class art, theatre and concerts, and they add tremendous value, not only to our culture but to our economy," said City Manager Edward M. Augustus, Jr. "As a city, we must continue to cultivate our creative economy, which is crucial to our continued success as a great place to live, work, study and play."

Nationwide, the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 reveals that the nonprofit arts industry produces $63.8 billion in economic activity every year, resulting in $11.86 billion in federal, state and local tax revenues. In addition, it supports 2.3 million full-time equivalent jobs and generates $49.4 billion in household income.

"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."

Arts Industry Boon for Local Businesses
"The empirical data from this study is eye popping, it proves the arts and culture industry is a major factor in the economic well-being of the Worcester community and its populace," noted Michael Traynor, Worcester's Chief Development Officer. "The creative economy is an indispensable component of our economic development agenda."

In addition to spending by organizations, the nonprofit arts and culture industry leveraged $61.2 million in event-related spending by its audiences. As a result of attending a cultural event, attendees often eat dinner in local restaurants, pay for parking, buy gifts and souvenirs and pay a babysitter. What's more, attendees from out of town often stay overnight in a local hotel. In Worcester, these dollars support 1,261 full-time equivalent jobs and generate $4,215,000 in local and state government revenues.

"The study confirms that the arts in its many forms, contributes to the economic vitality of our city and region. Worcester's growing restaurant and foodie scene is just one example of how the arts and creative economy can come together to create jobs and generate revenue," noted Timothy P. Murray, president and CEO of the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce

"Cities and communities we want to live in are those that have both economic viability, and social capital. Great cities and towns that are exciting , thriving communities embrace arts, culture and creativity. Creativity sparks the economy and build community. "noted Erin Williams, Cultural Development Officer for the City of Worcester.

"The impact of cultural assets and organizations should be measured not just in dollars but in the way the arts elevate our entire city," said Mayor Joseph M. Petty. "Beyond just brick and mortar construction and development, a modern eighteen-hour-city needs a vibrant culinary and cultural sector to move forward."

The Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study was conducted by Americans for the Arts and supported by The Ruth Lilly Fund of Americans for the Arts. Americans for the Arts' local, regional and statewide project partners contributed both time and financial support to the study. Special thanks to the Barr Foundation for sponsoring Worcester Cultural Coalition's participation in the AEP5 study. Financial information from organizations was collected in partnership with DataArts™, using a new online survey interface. For a full list of the communities who participated in the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study, visit The Worcester Cultural Coalition is the unified voice of Worcester-area arts and cultural organizations. Its mission is to draw on Worcester's rich and diverse cultural assets to foster economic revitalization, support active, creative engagement for all and promote a strong cultural identity for Greater Worcester.

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