Artistic activity is a major and varied contributor to economic vitality. We suggest that the productivity of and earnings in a regional economy rise as the incidence of artists within its boundaries increases, because artists’ creativity and specialized skills enhance the design, production and marketing of products and services in other sectors. They also help firms recruit top-rate employees and generate income through direct exports of artistic work out of the region.
In this update of our 2003 study, The Artistic Dividend: The Hidden Contributions of the Arts to the Regional Economy, we explore the results of the 2000 Census to update our depiction of artistic prowess city by city, expanding our analysis to the twenty-nine largest U.S. metros. We confirm the tendency for different metros to specialize in artistic suboccupations.
Ann Markusen, Arts Economy Initiative, University of Minnesota
Anne Gadwa Nicodemus, Principal, Metris Arts Consulting
Innovation has long been seen as crucial to the post-industrial knowledge economy and the cities where it is flourishing. Arts and culture -- once minor concerns compared with education, crime, and transportation -- have assumed an increasingly central position in urban policy and planning debates.