Arts Add $114B to New York State Economy


New York State’s cultural industries employ 460,000 and award $46.7 Billion in compensation

New York, NY – New York State’s arts and cultural industries generate $114.1 billion to the state economy, employ 462,584, and award $46.7 billion in compensation, according to new data released by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).  

Produced by the NEA and BEA, the Arts and Cultural Production Satellite Account (ACPSA) quantifies New York’s role as a national leader in economic output through the arts. Of the total $760 billion generated by the arts nationwide, New York’s $114.1 billion accounts for 15 percent. At the state level, the cultural sector accounts for 7.8% of the value added to the state’s economy – more than retail, construction or transportation. New York ranks second among all states in arts and cultural value added to the economy and in arts and cultural employment.

With the support of Governor Cuomo, the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) cultivates the state’s thriving creative economy through 15 grant programs and the Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) initiative. In 2018, NYSCA awarded $41M through direct grants and regrants to 2,400 organizations and artists across New York State. This funding included $5M in dedicated REDC support to initiatives that drive economy through the arts.

New York’s top ACPSA industry by value added is motion pictures, which alone contributes $28.15 billion to the state economy. Among top ACPSA core industries – originators of ideas and content associated with the creation of arts and culture – are performing arts companies ($3.8 billion) and independent artists, writers, and performers ($3.2 billion). These figures reflect New York’s value on creativity as a pillar of both identity and economy and the state’s role as home to Academy Award-winning films; world-class theatre, museums, music and dance; and hundreds of thousands of artists.

To support New York State’s top creative industries, in 2018, NYSCA awarded $2M through the agency's Electronic Media & Film Program, $3M through its Theatre Program, and $1.35M through its Individual Artists Program. An additional $750,000 through its State & Local Partnership Program supported the NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellowship.

NYSCA funding has also supported the creation of new works by Pulitzer Prize, Academy Award, Tony Award and MacArthur Award winners whose successes continue to grow New York as a global cultural center.

NYSCA support strengthens New York State’s creative culture and fulfills a critical role in New York communities in all 62 State counties. The agency advances cultural organizations and artists of all disciplines and spurs the creation of workforce investment programs and public arts events that further grow New York’s economy, stimulate tourism and benefit local businesses.

About the New York State Council on the Arts

The New York State Council on the Arts champions community and creativity by preserving and advancing numerous aspects of the cultural heritage that makes New York State an exceptional place to live, work and visit.

NYSCA upholds the right of all New Yorkers to experience the vital contributions the arts make to our communities, education, economic development and quality of life. Through our core grantmaking activity, NYSCA awarded $41M in FY2018 to 2,400 organizations and municipalities statewide through direct grants and regrants in our 15 programs and the Regional Economic Development Council initiative. An additional $20M capital funding opportunity was awarded in partnership with Empire State Development. NYSCA funding supports the visual, literary, media and performing arts and includes dedicated support for arts education and underserved communities. NYSCA further advances New York's creative culture by hosting convenings with leaders in the field and providing organizational and professional development opportunities and informational resources.

Created by Governor Nelson Rockefeller in 1960, and continued and expanded to the present day with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, NYSCA is an agency of the Executive Branch of the New York State Government. For more information on NYSCA, please visit:  


About the ACPSA

Produced by the BEA and NEA, the Arts and Cultural Production Satellite Account tracks the annual economic impact of arts and cultural production from 35 industries, both commercial and non-profit. The ACPSA reports on economic measures—value-added to gross domestic product (GDP) as well as employment and compensation—at the national and state levels. The numbers in this report are from 2015, the most recent reporting year. Nationally, the arts contribute $763.6 billion to the U.S. economy, more than agriculture, transportation, or warehousing and employ 4.9 million workers across the country.