Monday, February 21, 2011

The City of Atlanta’s Office of Cultural Affairs Joins Americans for the Arts

Atlanta to participate in nationwide research studies, National Economic Impact and Local Arts Index

The City of Atlanta’s Office of Cultural Affairs has joined forces with Americans for the Arts, the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts, to conduct nationwide research studies, Arts and Economic Prosperity IVTM and the inaugural Local Arts Index.

The Arts and Economic Prosperity IV research study will evaluate the impact that spending by nonprofit arts organizations has on their local economies. As one of 200 study partners across all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, the City of Atlanta’s Office of Cultural Affairs will facilitate the gathering of detailed economic and event attendance data from nonprofit arts and culture organizations located throughout Atlanta.

“The City of Atlanta Office of Cultural Affairs is proud to have been selected to participate in these important research projects,” said Camille Russell Love, director of the City of Atlanta Office of Cultural Affairs. “The research findings will provide the data points for Atlanta’s selection as AmericanStyle magazine’s top ten Art Cities in America.”

In addition, the City of Atlanta’s Office of Cultural Affairs will also collaborate with the community’s arts organizations to collect surveys from at least 800 arts and culture attendees in the City of Atlanta during 2011. Customized findings for the City of Atlanta will demonstrate the impact of spending by nonprofit arts and culture organizations and their audiences on the economy.

In 2007, American for the Arts reported that the City of Atlanta’s nonprofit sector generated $274.8 million in local economic activity— a number that is comprised of $113.94 million in spending by nonprofit arts and cultural organizations—and $160.87 million in event-related spending by audiences, according to the Americans for the Arts nationwide study-Arts and Economic Prosperity III.

The Local Arts Index will be the first study designed to measure the health and vitality of the arts industries throughout the United States. The City of Atlanta’s Office of Cultural Affairs is one of 100 organizations that will participate in the inaugural Local Arts Index, which will use a single methodology utilizing information gathered from research produced by the federal government and private research organizations. The Index will also cover multiple industries, including nonprofit groups, for profit arts businesses, employment figures, and more. When these quantitative measures are taken together, the Local Arts Index will provide a year-by-year and community-by-community comparison of the nation’s arts sector. The findings from the Local Arts Index will be reported in fall 2011.

Americans for the Arts’ Arts & Economic Prosperity IV study is supported by The Ruth Lilly Fund of Americans for the Arts. In addition, Americans for the Arts’ local and statewide project partners are contributing both time and financial support for the study. The Kresge Foundation has awarded Americans for the Arts a $1.2 million grant to conduct the Local Arts Index, as well as the supporting workshops and materials necessary to assist communities in the effective application of the local data.

About City of Atlanta Office Cultural Affairs
The City of Atlanta Office of Cultural Affairs (OCA), a division of the Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs, was established in 1974 to encourage and support Atlanta's cultural resources. In order to improve the social fabric and quality of life for Atlanta's citizens and visitors, the Office is committed to nurturing excellence and diversity in the city's artistic offerings. Acknowledging that the arts play an essential role in defining the cultural life of the city and contribute substantially to the city's economy, our organization strives to enhance Atlanta's reputation as a cultural destination. The Office seeks to support programs that educate and expose the public to a rich and diverse range of cultural expression and aspires to make arts available to everyone.
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