Culture Pulse 2015

Cuyahoga County residents have access to world-class arts and culture organizations and individual artists. Through classic and contemporary works, arts and culture is celebrating our heritage and imagining our future. Such great cultural production cannot happen without strong and well-resourced arts and culture organizations and individual artists.

The health of the arts and culture sector was the focus of Arts Cleveland’s annual snapshot of arts and culture nonprofits, Culture Pulse.


The data revealed contributed support has risen slightly, while larger gains were made in earned income for the sector. However, such revenue growth was offset sharply by declines in investment income. In light of growing endowments, being mindful of the impact of market fluctuations is one area to monitor moving forward. Foundation and government support remain critical components of the sector’s revenue.


The sector’s workforce has experienced gains in terms of full-time and part-time employment. Salaries and fringe benefits have also increased. The sector is engaging more independent contractors as well, particularly artists and performers. Despite overall workforce growth, an area to monitor is an overall decline in the number of board members for the sector.


While more organizations report owning space, the overall square footage filled by arts and culture organizations has declined. This decline is largely driven by reductions in donated space.

Why arts and culture?

Arts and culture provokes contemplation on issues facing our community. It enhances critical thinking skills, encourages innovative thought and challenges us to see different perspectives.

As a partner in Cleveland’s resurgence, arts and culture’s impacts are far-reaching.

  • Creative placemaking efforts are revitalizing neighborhoods and improving the quality of experiences for residents and tourists.
  • Arts and culture practices are improving the health outcomes of patients and changing the design of healthcare facilities.
  • Arts and culture is contributing to our economy through its businesses, employment and tax payments.

We could go on, but we’ll let you dive into the data to see for yourself.


The data used for this report was provided by the Cultural Data Project (CDP), an organization created to strengthen arts and culture by documenting and disseminating information on the arts and culture sector. Any interpretation of the data is the view of Arts Cleveland/CPAC and does not reflect the views of the Cultural Data Project.


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