|The arts are good for business and business is good for the arts. Arts and culture contribute mightily to the economic activity in Iowa’s Creative Corridor.|
Spending by arts and cultural organizations and event-related consumption by their audiences support 1,986 full-time equivalent jobs, generate $33.9 million in household income to local residents, and deliver $6.21 million in local and state government revenue. The typical arts attendee spends $27.79 per person, per event, not including items such as meals, parking, and shopping.
The arts industry also supports the international export industry. Our own West Music Company employs more than 170 people in six regional locations in Eastern Iowa and Western Illinois.
Talented workers are an essential element of our region’s economic success. Creativity is among the skills most frequently sought by employers. Exposure to art, music, drama and dance prepares young people to be creative, imaginative, entrepreneurial adult employees.
Arts and culture provide social cohesion and foster collaboration. Studies show that early exposure to the arts results in better academic performance and stronger team skills later, all of which prepare our future workforce. Longitudinal data of 25,000 students demonstrate that students with an education rich in the arts have higher GPAs and standardized test scores, lower drop-out rates, and even better attitudes about community service.
The Iowa City Area Chamber of Commerce appreciates the abundance of arts and culture organizations that contribute directly and indirectly to our economy.