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County Executive's Office

Study: Arts and Culture Generate Nearly $350 Million in Direct Economic Activity in Dane County and Supports 4,677 Jobs

November 03, 2023
Mark Fraire, 608-266-5915
County Executive

Arts & Economic Prosperity 6 Study Centers Equity in Economic Research and Highlights Vital Role of Arts and Culture in Building More Livable Communities

The nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $346.7 million in direct economic activity in Dane County annually, supporting 4,677 jobs and generating over $25 million in local and state government revenues, according to a new economic impact study. With assistance from Dane Arts, the Arts & Economic Prosperity 6 study (AEP6) was conducted by Americans for the Arts, the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education.

“This latest Arts and Economic Prosperity study reaffirms that work carried out by Dane Arts and organizations across the county bolsters our economy and supports thousands of jobs and families,” said Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. “Dane County is home to a vibrant arts community, and we are excited to see our community bounce back following the pandemic and its related impacts. We thank everyone who supports our arts and culture community and creates opportunities for our local artists to thrive.”

The study shows nonprofit arts and culture organizations spent $125.8 million in Dane County during fiscal year 2022. This spending is far-reaching: organizations pay employees, purchase supplies, contract for services and acquire assets within their community. Those dollars, in turn, generated $87,753,986 in household income for local residents, with audiences adding another $102,124,519.

Building on its 30-year legacy as the largest and most inclusive study of its kind, Arts & Economic Prosperity 6 represents a reset from its previous versions, establishing a new benchmark in the AEP study series:

  • Social Impact – for the first time, AEP6 expands beyond the economic and financial data to include social impact measurements of arts and culture’s effect on the well-being of communities and residents.
  • Equity and Inclusion – Americans for the Arts transformed its approach and expanded the inclusion and participation of organizations serving or representing communities of color.

A one page summary of the results is attached to this announcement. To learn more about the study, please visit Americans for the Arts’ AEP6 webpage.