This post was written by Phyo Thant ’16
This summer I have been working with Madison County Cultural and Heritage Tourism (MCCHT) committee. One of the objectives of MCCHT is to direct more efficient allocation of funding and resources to the promotion of the county’s cultural heritage tourism. To this goal, MCCHT is conducting an economic impact study project to provide evidence of economic relevance of cultural heritage organizations in the county. I am helping MCCHT with this project, and my work involves finalizing the gaps from the data collected from different arts and culture institutions, analyzing the data, writing a summary report, and preparing promotional and marketing materials for MCCHT.
Our findings show that nonprofit arts and culture is a $4.64 million industry in the Madison County. We estimate that this represents 0.27% of total output (GDP total of all industries) of the county. In addition, the arts and culture industry, directly and indirectly, supports 100 full-time equivalent jobs, which accounts for 0.47% of the county’s total employment, contributes $2,272,778 in resident household income, and generates $455,614 in local and state government revenue each year. To conclude, this study proves that investing in the arts and culture delivers economic benefits for all stakeholders in the local community.
Eighteen nonprofit arts and culture organizations in the county – museums, theaters and art galleries, historic parks and sites – participated in our survey. The study follows the model of Arts and Economic Prosperity IV, a similar but national-wide economic impact study conducted by Americans for the Arts, the nations’ leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education. The table below summarizes the major findings in this study. Data presented for other study regions are obtained from Arts and Economic Prosperity IV National Statistical Report.