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$110,000 Awarded to Measure the Impact of Arts and Culture in NYS

The Arts and Culture Research Fund

May 21 2013

What exactly do arts and culture contribute to New York City and State's economy and to community development efforts? Are neighborhoods with cultural organizations safer, healthier, more economically vital or stable? The Arts & Culture Research Fund was set up in The New York Community Trust in 2012 with the encouragement of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and the New York State Council on the Arts to answer these questions.

The New York Community Trust today announces the first round of grants, awarding $110,000 to six nonprofits whose research will seek to create a deeper understanding of the role arts and culture play in the State. Grantees will use the Cultural Data Project (CDP) as a primary source of data. CDP, which started in New York State in 2009 and now operates in 13 states, lets arts and cultural organizations enter financial, program, and operational data into a standardized online form.

In addition to mapping their cultural environment, organizations can use the CDP to produce a variety of reports designed to help increase management capacity, identify strengths and weak spots, and make strategic decisions. Although more than 2,800 arts and cultural groups statewide, including 1,800 in New York City, have input information into the CDP, researchers and advocates have made limited use of the data.

How important is this data? Now, with access to standardized and comparable data on the arts and culture sector, researchers can help the public better understand the role and impact of art on communities and understand why it is important to support and sustain the sector. The following grants are part of an effort to encourage researchers and advocacy organizations to make use of this valuable resource.

-Arts Services of Western New York, Buffalo, $25,000 to map and report on the economic impact of the arts and culture in a five county region in western New York.
-Center for Research, Regional Education & Outreach at SUNY New Paltz, $20,000 to measure the impact of arts and culture in seven counties in the Mid-Hudson Valley.
-Fractured Atlas, New York City, $15,000 for analysis of fiscal sponsorship use by the State's nonprofit cultural sector.
-Le Moyne College, Syracuse, $15,000 to investigate the correlation between cultural vitality and community vitality.
-University of Texas at Arlington, $20,000 to investigate neighborhood attributes associated with arts and cultural groups in New York State.
-Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone, New York City, $15,000 to study the impact of its investments in 42 arts and cultural groups in upper Manhattan.
The Arts & Cultural Research Fund is supported by the following organizations:

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
The John R. Oishei Foundation
The New York Community Trust
New York Council for the Humanities
The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and the New York State Council on the Arts are represented on the Fund's advisory committee.

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