Why the Arts Matter

Making a Case to Support the Arts

  • Every dollar granted to arts and culture in Michigan generates a return of $10 and has a ripple effect of $34. Sources: Role of the Arts in Economic Development, National Governor’s Association Center for Best Practices; and The Impact of the Arts, ArtServe Michigan.
  • In 2004 the average household expenditure was $30.72 per month for arts and cultural activities. Source: Economic Benefit of Michigan’s Arts and Cultural Activities, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, commissioned by the Michigan Nonprofit Research Program. 
·         In Clinton County this equals $726,000 spent on the arts per month.
·         In Eaton County this equals $1.2 million spent on the arts per month.
·         In Ingham County this equals $3.3 million spent on the arts per month.
  • The arts employ a significant workforce, and purchase goods and services from local businesses.  In the greater Lansing region the arts conservatively employ 750 direct full-time jobs, and impact more than 1,700 indirect full-time jobs. Sources: Americans for the Arts’Economic Prosperity III Calculator; and the Arts Council of Greater Lansing.
  • Purchases made by the greater Lansing arts and cultural sector, together with its attendees, provide the region with $58 million in economic impact, and $3.1 million in state tax revenue annually. Sources: Americans for the Arts’ Economic Prosperity III Calculator; and the Arts Council of Greater Lansing.
  • The major festivals in Lansing and East Lansing alone draw 450,000 each year, providing $13.5 million in regional economic impact, nearly 80 direct jobs, and more than 400 indirect jobs. Source: Americans for the Arts’ Economic Prosperity III Calculator; and the Arts Council of Greater Lansing.
  • According to the Travel Industry Association, cultural tourists stay longer, spend more, and are more likely to spend $1,000+ more than the average traveler.
  • All students deserve the opportunity to take part in the arts, both in school and in the community. The arts can positively affect entire school culture-especially student motivation, attitudes, and attendance.
  • With cuts to K-12 education, the arts and cultural sector steps in as an educational partner by providing positive, quality educational programming and free programs for children, low income families, and at-risk youth. Source: the Arts Council of Greater Lansing
  • Students who participate in the arts have better grade point averages, score better on standardized tests, have lower dropout rates, and have a measurable impact in deterring delinquent behavior.Sources: Americans for the Arts; and Dr. James S. Catterall, Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, UCLA
  • A poll conducted by Harris Interactive reports that 93% of Americans believe that the arts are vital to providing a well-rounded education.
  • According to the 2008 10-Point Plan published by the United States Conference of Mayors, the arts are noted as being critical to the quality of life and the vibrancy of America’s cities.
  • Corporate leaders continue to stress the importance of a strong cultural environment to attract and retain a skilled and educated workforce. Source: ArtServe Michigan
  • In a recent report prepared by Michigan Future, Inc. the report concluded that, “What distinguishes successful places are their concentrations of talent, where talent is defined as a combination of knowledge, creativity and entrepreneurship. In a flattening world, the places with the greatest concentrations of talent win. States and regions without concentrations of talent will have great difficulty retaining or attracting knowledge-based enterprises, nor are they likely to be the place where new knowledge-based enterprises are created.”