By Laura Bruney, Arts & Business Council
When the board and volunteers of over 1,000 non-profit arts groups in Miami-Dade donned clipboards to conduct surveys with their audience and patrons, they wanted to showcase that the arts are an essential part of the economy. Their hard work paid off in a big way. The surveys that were collected from hundreds of groups and their participants were compiled and studied. The resulting report, Arts & Economic Prosperity IV developed by Americans for the Arts for cities and states throughout the country shows that even in a declining and difficult economy the arts are relevant and can be considered an essential tool for economic stimulus solutions. The Miami-Dade Department of Cultural Affairs partnered with Americans for the Arts for the local component.
Here are the drum roll worthy results: the arts in Miami-Dade have an impressive annual economic impact of more than 1.1 billion dollars. From Aventura to Homestead, from Coral Gables to Miami Beach, from downtown to the seashore the arts are everywhere. There are more than 1,200 non-profit arts groups in our community and they employ more than 22,000 full time professionals and workers.
“The Arts are an integral part of Miami-Dade County’s economy and our Creative Design industry is one of the top reasons why companies choose to establish their businesses in our community,” says Pamela Fuertes, Vice President of the Beacon Council. “Under our One Community One Goal (OCOG) study, the Creative Design industries were identified as a key industry that is vitally important to our present and future growth, and the Arts are a big part of that success.”
Every day, arts and cultural organizations act as economic drivers—creating an industry that supports jobs, generates government revenue, and is the cornerstone of our tourism industry, playing a leading role in Miami-Dade’s success.
According to George Neary, VP of Cultural Tourism for the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau, Cultural tourism increases visitors and attracts people that spend more time and money in our destination.
“With over one million annual visitors, the opportunities for the development of successful strategies that link the arts and tourism, are boundless,” says Neary.” Profitable partnerships between arts and hotels, restaurants and other hospitality industries are working. Miami Museum Month which provides collaborative promotion and outreach for almost 20 museums is a prime example. Working together we can continue to thrive and make Miami THE go to destination for the arts.”
Miami-Dade is a great example of all segments working together for not only economic benefit but artistic as well. We live in a world class global community that is not only naturally beautiful, but also filled with superlative art and magnificent performing groups that showcase our unique past and our diversity while also supporting a cultural life exploding with the sounds and sights of today. The notion that the arts stimulate the economy in creative and often unrecognized ways is undeniable. The economic argument doesn’t do justice to the statistics about the arts improving academic achievement, community development, and quality of life. Be sure you show your support of the arts to keep our cultural community thriving and economically stimulating!