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Investment and Participation

The Creative Work Force

Creative Places and Innovation

  • Copyright industries (businesses that rely on copyrights and produce computer software, films, television programs, and other audio, visual and printed media) account for 11.1% ($1.63 trillion) of U.S. gross domestic product.

    Source: International Intellectual Property Alliance, Copyright Industries in the U.S. Economy: The 2007-2010 Report, 2011.

  • Goals of creative place making investments are associated with increased GDP growth. Cities with high levels of community attachment—the degree of loyalty and affection residents have for their community—also have high GDP growth over time.

    Source: Knight Foundation, Soul of the Community Project.

  • Creative places are innovative places. The presence of arts districts has been shown to produce increased media arts patents.

    Source: Arts Districts, Universities, and the Rise of Media Arts, Douglas S. Noonan and Shiri M. Breznitz, School of Public Policy, Georgia Institute of Technology, presented at the National Endowment for the Arts and Brookings Institution's The Arts, New Growth Theory, and Economic Development Symposium

Cultural Tourism

  • Seventy-eight percent of all American leisure travelers (118 million adults) participate in cultural and/or heritage activities while traveling, contributing more than $192 billion annually to the U.S. economy.

    Source: Mandala Research, Cultural Heritage Tourism News, Winter 2010.

  • Cultural/Heritage travelers, compared to non-cultural/heritage travelers, take more trips (five per year compared to four per year) and spend more money on each trip ($994 average compared to $611 average).

    Source: Mandala Research, Cultural Heritage Tourism News, Winter 2010.

For additional information, visit NASAA's Creative Economy Resource Center or contact Paul Pietsch at NASAA.

Updated winter 2015


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