It is well known that the number of arts nonprofits grew substantially in the 2000s. To explore the relative impact of new versus existing arts organizations, we created an indicator that measures the share of all nonprofit arts organizations that are “millennial,” with an IRS ruling date of January 2000 or later. Nationally, they represented over 30% of all arts nonprofits, providing clear evidence of entrepreneurship in the arts. This indicator shows where that growth has occurred in communities around the country.

A larger or smaller share of new arts organizations is one element of the character of a nonprofit arts community: to what extent does it favor older institutions over newer? Does it provide an environment that encourages or discourages new organizations? Newer organizations are generally innovative in their approach to their specific discipline and serve as incubators to test new ideas – though established organizations are also innovators.

This indicator measures the percentage of all nonprofits that are “millennial,” in 425 counties with 20 or more arts nonprofits. Data for this indicator are from the 2009 Core Files at the National Center for Charitable Statistics.

Additional Information: Average county indicator value = 31.62%. Median county indicator value = 31.14%.

 

Fast Facts from the Arts Index

The nonprofit arts grow – despite a recession!

The number of nonprofit arts organizations has grown annually, reaching 113,000 in 2010. In the past decade, nonprofit arts organizations grew 49% (76,000 to 113,000), a greater rate than all nonprofit organizations, which grew 32% (1.2 million to 1.6 million).