June 6-7, 2013
New England's Creative Economy: Nonprofit Sector Impact (September 2011)
The creative economy is a powerful engine of growth and community vitality. Together, artists, cultural nonprofits, and creative businesses produce and distribute cultural goods and services that generate jobs, revenue, and quality of life. A thriving cultural sector leads to thriving communities.
NEFA’s creative economy work supports the creative sector and creative placemaking work by highlighting the rich cultural activity of New England, quantifying its impact, connecting its leaders, and providing opportunities for anyone across the U.S. to apply research frameworks or New England model projects locally.
NEFA's Creative Economy Milestones
NEFA has a history of providing arts organizations with data-driven research to be used for advocacy to their local governments and has become the foundation for local and statewide efforts to build New England’s creative economy.
|1978||NEFA starts its economic impact studies of New England's nonprofit cultural sector.|
|Mid-1990s||NEFA's studies include data from the Internal Revenue Service, revealing that the nonprofit cultural community in New England is a more significant economic force than anyone had yet imagined. Leaders in the region's business, government, cultural, and educational sectors take notice.|
|1998||The Creative Economy Initiative is formed, bringing together the commercial and nonprofit components of New England's cultural sector.|
|2000||NEFA partners with the New England Council to define the creative economy and analyze its collective economic impact in The Creative Economy Initiative: The Role of the Arts and Culture in New England's Economic Competitiveness.|
|2005||NEFA refines long-standing methodology for examining the nonprofit component of the creative economy with New England's Creative Economy: The State of the Public Cultural Sector.|
|2006||The economic Impact Calculator is added to the New England Cultural Database (now CultureCount) as a pilot project. Users can learn about the input-output economic models that assess economic impact and estimate the economic impact of a single or group of arts/culture nonprofits in Massachusetts.|
|2007||NEFA updates its 2000 report to offer a reliable, public definition of the occupations and industries of the creative economy in The Creative Economy: A New Definition.|
|2008||NEFA re-launches the New England Cultural Database (NECD) as CultureCount, the only online comprehensive and consistent data collection resource for New England's creative economy, collected over NEFA's 30-year research history.|
|2009||Selections of new data are released in New England’s Creative Economy: The Nonprofit Sector, which demonstrates the size and financial statistics of New England's arts and culture nonprofits.|
|2010||NEFA co-hosts Connecting Creative Communities with the City of Providence Department of Art, Culture + Tourism, a summit where leaders from New England gathered to share strategies for engaging the creative sector and to begin to develop a network of creative communities.|
|May 2011||NEFA co-hosts the Creative Communities Exchange with Berkshire Creative and establishes Creative Economy awards of $3,500 each to recognize two exemplary creative economy projects in New England.|
|Sept. 2011||NEFA releases New England's Creative Economy: Nonprofit Sector Impact, the next installment of the report series focusing on economic impact of New England's arts and cultural nonprofits, including organizational examples from each state.|
At the Creative Communities Exchange, exemplary projects are recognized with NEFA's creative economy award, which includes a cash prize. These projects are chosen for their clear strategies, effective collaboration, and visible impact on the New England creative economy.
2011 award recipients:
- Rockingham Arts and Museum Project (RAMP), founded in 1995 by Robert McBride, received NEFA's creative economy award for its longevity, outstanding leadership, and breadth of projects - including public art, affordable artist housing, and a main street program - that have helped to turn a depressed, rural former mill town into a vibrant area that supports artists, businesses, and visitors.
- Project Storefronts, a new initiative of the New Haven Department of Cultural Affairs, received NEFA's creative economy award for thoughtful project design, effective cross-sector partnerships with the Economic Development Corporation of New Haven (EDC), the City of New Haven's Office of Economic Development and Ninth Square property owner Related Properties, and clear impact on local artist entrepreneurs, real estate development, and community citizens.
Dee Schneidman | Research Manager
firstname.lastname@example.org | 617.951.0010 x530