Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 Study


Salt Lake City’s Nonprofit Arts and Culture Industry Generates $306.6 Million in Economic Activity and Supports 10,479 Jobs Annually According to Americans for the Arts

Arts Industry Returns $27.9 Million in Revenue to Local and State Coffers

SALT LAKE CITY – The nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $306.6 million in annual economic activity in Salt Lake City—supporting 10,479 full-time equivalent jobs and generating $27.9 million in local and state government revenues, according to the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 national economic impact study. The most comprehensive economic impact study of the nonprofit arts and culture industry ever conducted in the United States, Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 was conducted by Americans for the Arts, the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education.

Results show that nonprofit arts and culture organizations spent $112.4 million during fiscal year 2015. This spending is far-reaching: organizations pay employees, purchase supplies, contract for services and acquire assets within their community. Those dollars, in turn, generated $215.7 million in household income for local residents and $27.9 million in local and state government revenues.

“We’re delighted to participate in the Arts and Economic Prosperity project with Americans for the Arts and happy to provide arts and business groups alike information which supports our work together.” Says Karen Krieger, Executive Director of the Salt Lake City Arts Council. “While it’s evident that Salt Lake City is experiencing growth and is flourishing economically, what many may not realize is that businesses intentionally rely on the arts to help build market share, enhance their brand, and reach new customers. A strong arts scene and a culturally vibrant community is a significant economic driver and the results of this survey shed light on the depth to which that is true in Salt Lake City.”

Nationwide, the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 reveals that the nonprofit arts industry produces $166.3 billion in economic activity–$63.8 billion in spending my arts and cultural organizaitons and $102.5 billion in event-related spending by their audiences. In addition, it supports 4.6 million jobs and generates $27.5 billion in federal, state, and local tax revenues.

“This study demonstrates that the arts are an economic and employment powerhouse both locally and across the nation,” said Robert L. Lynch, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts. “A vibrant arts and culture industry helps local businesses thrive and helps local communities become stronger and healthier places to live. Leaders who care about community and economic vitality can feel good about choosing to invest in the arts. Nationally as well as locally, the arts mean business.”

Arts Industry Boon for Local Businesses

In addition to spending by organizations, the nonprofit arts and culture industry in Salt Lake City leverages $194.1 million in event-related spending by its audiences, which excludes the cost of admission. As a result of attending a cultural event, attendees often eat dinner in local restaurants, pay for parking, buy gifts or souvenirs, and pay a babysitter. What’s more, attendees from out of town often stay overnight in a local hotel.

Lara Fritts, Director of the Department of Economic Development for Salt Lake City, says, “This in-depth study supports what we have long known and suspected – that arts and culture is core to economic well-being and vitality for Salt Lake City. In fact, a recent business survey conducted by Salt Lake City’s Department of Economic Development showed similar findings, with the majority of SLC businesses prioritizing the importance of arts and culture in their decision to stay and grow in our city. As Salt Lake City continues its path to becoming nationally and globally recognized for arts and culture, we’re certain these incredible amenities and offerings will impact SLC’s economic future.”

The Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study was conducted by Americans for the Arts and supported by The Ruth Lilly Fund of Americans for the Arts. Americans for the Arts’ local, regional, and statewide project partners contributed both time and financial support to the study. Financial information from organizations was collected in partnership with DataArtsTM, using a new online survey interface. For a full list of the communities who participated in the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study, visit