Erie Vital Signs

Support of Arts and Cultural Activities: Arts & Cultural Revenue

This trend is mixed or inconclusive.

The arts and culture revenue data of arts and cultural organizations can lend valuable insight into the health of the local arts and cultural community. Unfortunately, even the best available data sources for the Erie region can have serious limitations. Such is the case with the recent revenue data reported by the Pennsylvania Cultural Data Project. In 2012, only 15 arts and cultural organizations in the region reported data compared to 23 the year before and 27 in 2010. Such limitations prevent accurate year-over-year comparisons of revenue totals.

A better year to benchmark 2012 data against is 2007, when data was reported by 14 local arts and cultural organizations. On a positive trend, total contributed revenue for arts and cultural organizations has increased significantly from $2,945,558 in 2007 to $4,823,775 in 2012. Total program revenue, however, has dropped from $2,825,760 in 2007 down to $1,620,510 in 2012.

PLEASE NOTE: The number of organizations that respond to the Pennsylvania Cultural Data Project varies each year. The 2012 data was drawn from only 15 local organizations, which is a significantly lower number than those that reported data in the previous two years.

The Basics

This indicator reports the total revenue at all those organizations that participated in the PA Cultural Data Project in the year indicated. It includes both:

Total program revenue: funds received from ticket sales, admissions, tuition, etc. from programs presented by the organization.

Total contributed revenue: the sum of trustee/board contributions, individual contributions, corporate contributions, foundation contributions, city government funding, county government funding, state government funding, federal government funding, tribal contributions, fundraising, other contributions, parent organization support, related organization contributions, in-kind contributions, and net assets released from restrictions.

Why is it important?

Arts and culture create jobs and generate tax revenues. Arts and culture are important for building community and economic development. Art can be a pathway to public discussion, as well as gaining understanding on social issues and building social connections. Restaurants, art galleries, and music venues can be major selling points of an area when an individual is looking to move. Bringing in new residents allows the local economy to expand.

The Details

The Cultural Data Project is a nationwide effort. The CDP database is comprised of self-selected entities that voluntarily submit data either to participate in the data collection effort or for the purpose of applying to a CDP-affiliated grantmaker. It is not a comprehensive collection of all arts and culture-related organizations. The types of data collected include basic organizational information, revenues, expenses, marketing activities, balance sheet items, investments, loans and a wide range of non-financial information (including contributor numbers, attendance, space, pricing, capital and endowment campaigns, program activity and staffing).

The Nitty-Gritty Details

Cultural Data Project
* Overview
* FAQs about CDP data


Total program revenue, total contributed revenue.




Cultural Data Project

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