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Courtesy Photo: Millicent Rogers Museum employee Ben Weinberg showing the audience intercept survey to museum volunteer Warren Spehar

Taos County Participates in National ‘Arts & Economic Prosperity 6’ Study

The Millicent Rogers Museum and Taos Arts Council announced that Taos County will participate in Arts & Economic Prosperity 6 (AEP6), the most comprehensive economic impact study of the nonprofit arts and culture industry ever conducted in the United States, administered by Americans for the Arts.
AEP6 will examine the economic impact of nonprofit arts and culture in Taos County and 398 additional communities representing all 50 states.


All Taos County-based arts and culture nonprofits are invited to participate by contacting greta@millicentrogers.org. The LOR Foundation, Millicent Rogers Museum, and Taos Arts Council all provided funding for the local study. Taos Community Foundation is providing technical support.


The Arts & Economic Prosperity® series is conducted about every five years to gauge the economic impact of spending by nonprofit arts and culture organizations and the event-related spending by their audiences. In 2017, AEP5 documented that the nonprofit arts and culture industry generated $166.3 billion in economic activity (spending by organizations plus the event-related spending by their audiences), which supported 4.6 million jobs and generated $27.5 billion in government revenue. The AEP series demonstrates that an investment in the arts provides both cultural and economic benefits. This is the first time Taos County is participating in the study.


Audience surveys will be collected from attendees at arts events throughout the County from May 2022 through May 2023—in total, the national sample is anticipated to surpass 250,000 surveys. A survey of nonprofit arts and culture organizations will occur February through April 2023. The national and local findings will be made public in September 2023. At that time, AFTA will provide a customized report on the unique economic impact results for Taos County, including the number of jobs that are supported and the amount of government revenue that is generated by our community’s nonprofit arts industry.


Americans for the Arts is committed to addressing equity and inclusion as a critical component of the methodology, organizational participation, and collection of data for AEP6 by centering and representing BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) and ALAANA (African, Latinx, Asian, Arab, Native American) identifying communities — a segment of the nonprofit arts and culture sector that has been underrepresented in past studies.


“Everyone knows the intrinsic value of the arts, but this information will help us understand the overall return on investment, as well as help us advocate for greater support across the county. We think the numbers are going to tell an eye-opening story!” said Greta Brunschwyler, Executive Director, Millicent Rogers Museum.


Volunteers are needed and welcome to help collect audience intercept surveys at events across Taos County. Anyone interested is invited to complete a simple volunteer form so that local organizers can match volunteers with arts and culture events.


Nolen V. Bivens, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts, commented, “The arts are economic catalysts — strengthening the economy by creating jobs, generating government revenue, and driving tourism. Community is where the arts make a difference, and while the national impact data are impressive, at its core, AEP6 is a local story. I look forward to seeing its results, which will be key in persuading decision-makers that the arts benefit all people in all communities.”


For more information and a full list of the communities participating in the AEP6 study, visit www.americansforthearts.org/AEP6


The Millicent Rogers Museum is a Taos, NM 501c-3 dedicated to sharing and celebrating the arts and cultures of the Southwest.