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Culture Works Launches Dayton-Area Cultural Plan With Economic Study

Thom Meyer

A study out Thursday says the arts are an important economic driver for the Dayton region. The study, commissioned by cultural advocacy group Culture Works, finds arts nonprofits are responsible for over $160 million in annual spending.

"Above and beyond the intrinsic benefits that arts and culture provides to the community in so many ways, there actually is an economic impact as well,” said Martine Meredith Collier, who heads Culture Works.

The study polled 266 organizations in the area, and found the arts are responsible for almost 3,000 jobs and $70 million a year in household incomes. The total amount of expenditures tied to both audience spending and arts nonprofit spending was $161.3 million.

The organization plans to use the data to help launch a regional cultural planning effort in 2014, and Collier says the numbers will also help get funding and support from local and national sources. The last cultural plan for Montgomery County in 1992 laid the groundwork for the creation of the Schuster Center.