State Arts Council Slated to Participate in National Economic Impact Study

Raleigh, N.C. (January 12, 2016) — The North Carolina Arts Council announced today that it will participate in a national research study, Arts & Economic Prosperity 5, to measure the economic impact of nonprofit arts organizations and their audiences. The study is being conducted by Americans for the Arts, the leading nonprofit arts organization for advancing the arts in the United States.
The N.C. Arts Council is one of nearly 300 study partners across the U.S. that will facilitate gathering detailed financial and event attendance data from nonprofit arts and cultural organizations during 2016.

Additionally, the N.C. Arts Council will collaborate with 31 local partners conducting studies in communities in 32 North Carolina counties, including local arts councils from Buncombe, Cumberland County, Dare County, New Hanover, Cabarrus, Wake and Yadkin counties, just to name a few.

Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 will provide data for the N.C. Arts Council to evaluate the impact of the arts and culture industry on the state’s economy, specifically employment and government revenues that are generated by the nonprofit arts industry.

The 2012 Arts & Economic Prosperity study found that nonprofit arts and culture are a $1.24 billion industry in North Carolina – one that supports 43,605 full-time equivalent jobs and generates $119 million in local and state government revenues.

“Our participation in the Arts & Economic Prosperity study provides documentation that the arts create jobs and stimulate economies across North Carolina,” said Susan Kluttz, Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Natural & Cultural Resources. “Our nonprofit arts sector builds community vitality and attracts visitors who spend money locally.”

Customized findings for N.C. will demonstrate the impact of spending by nonprofit arts and culture organizations and their audiences on the economy and will be announced in the summer of 2017. Specifically, the study’s results will include:

  • The total dollars spent by nonprofit arts and culture organizations.
  • The total dollars spent by audiences as a direct result of their attendance at arts and culture events.
  • The number of full-time equivalent jobs supported by arts spending.
  • The amount of resident, household income — including salaries and wages — generated by arts spending.
  • he amount of local and state government tax revenues generated by arts spending.

“Previous Arts & Economic Prosperity studies demonstrated that investment in the arts by local and state governments generates a $119 million return on investment,” said Wayne Martin, Executive Director of the N.C. Arts Council.

According to Americans for the Arts’ most recent national study in 2012, the nonprofit arts industry generated $135.2 billion in total economic impact and supported 4.1 million full-time equivalent jobs during 2010, resulted 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 2010 study are available at

“Our Arts & Economic Prosperity series 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. “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.”

The Arts & Economic Prosperity 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 financial support to the study.

For more information on the North Carolina study visit: