Strengthening our community through
Why should we invest in the arts?
Here are a few great reasons.
Positive economic impact
The arts industry attracts tourism dollars—today's fastest growing economic
market in the country. Cultural tourism is the leading reason cited by
travelers for visiting a community.
Milwaukee's Historic Third
Ward, Madison's Schenks-Atwood neighborhood and Green Bay’s Broadway
District are just a few examples of neighborhoods brought back to life
by non-profit galleries and performance spaces. The arts draw
restaurants, retailers and new residents, stabilizing neighborhoods
while creating jobs and tourist destinations.
In Wisconsin, the
non-profit arts industry alone generates $289 million annually in
According to Americans for the Arts and Dun
and Bradstreet, there are currently 8,896 creative for-profit and
not-for-profit businesses in Wisconsin, encompassing 44,284 jobs.
vibrant arts community is critical when corporations decide where to
locate, and when people decide where to work, according to John
Naisbitt, author of Megatrends.
A national survey conducted by
the Conference Board, an organization of top corporate officials that
tracks economic trends, found the availability of cultural activities
ranked third among the concerns of large businesses.
town of 3,000 in northwest Wisconsin, attracted a Mayo Clinic-affiliated
medical center due in part to the presence in the community of the
nationally-acclaimed Northern Lakes Center for the Arts.
A study done by University of California, Irvine
proved that a link exists between music and human intelligence. The
authors state, "music trains the brain for higher forms of thinking."
High-tech industry leaders seek employees who possess the skills
provided by an arts education, because these skills have been proven to
increase cognitive development; inspire motivation and discipline;
develop confidence and inventiveness; and hone communication and
Children who study the arts continue to
outperform non-arts students on the Scholastic Aptitude Tests (SATs).
According to a study conducted by the College Entrance Examination Board
in 1995, students who studied the arts more than four years scored 59
points higher on the verbal and 44 points higher on the math portions of
the SATs than students with no coursework or experience in the arts.
An analysis of the U.S. Department of Education's database of 25,000
students revealed that those students with high levels of arts
participation outperform "arts-poor" students by virtually every
In addition to strengthening young people's capacity to
learn, engagement in the arts allows young people to have positive
outlets for their boundless energy and imagination. By cultivating their
joy, talent and voices, Wisconsin's young people are better prepared to
assume their roles as productive and creative citizens.
The arts encourage the expression, refinement and
exchange of ideas and strengthen democracy.
People enjoy the
vibrancy associated with the arts, increasing the desirability of a
place to live.
The arts provide a medium by which social
capital, or a diverse sense of community, is enabled. They also help
cultural groups explore and build on their heritage and share that
heritage with others.
Arts activities help family members share
positive experiences, discover new talents and ideas, and grow together.
Source: Arts Wisconsin