Creative State MI

2015 Nonprofit Report

In its fourth edition, Creative Many’s Creative State Michigan report details the impact Michigan’s arts and cultural nonprofit organizations have on the state’s economy and citizens. The report represents Fiscal Year 2012 data from 407 nonprofit arts and cultural organizations – representing an estimated 18 percent of the sector.

Among its most compelling data, the report affirms the creative economy as a significant financial contributor and strategic opportunity for Michigan’s economic development. Of the nearly $596 million in annual expenditures by the nonprofit creative community in 2012 (which exceeds 2011 contributions), nearly $200 million supported salaries for 25,900 jobs. Organizations contributed more than $15 million in the employer portion of the payroll tax and nearly $1 million in state sales tax revenues.

Michigan’s arts and cultural destinations continue to demonstrate their essential value to the state’s tourism industry, generating nearly $2.5 billion in state tourism revenues in 2012. That represents 18 percent of the state’s total tourism revenues in that year – more than sporting events, golf, boating and sailing, hunting and fishing, and hiking and biking combined.

The report also provides indicators for the resources the arts provide for Michigan’s schools and children, as well as residents of all ages. In 2012, nearly 3 million students benefited from educational programs and events offered by arts and cultural venues statewide. These same organizations facilitated 24,995 school group visits and 18,092 offsite school programs providing valuable educational experiences at a time when businesses continue to increase the value of creativity and innovation in the workplace while many schools across Michigan have cut funding for arts programs. Michigan’s cultural groups are reaching growing audiences, reporting more than 25.7 million visits in 2012, 68 percent of which were free of charge.


Methodology for Reporting
Data sources for the Creative State Michigan 2015 nonprofit report include the Cultural Data Project (CDP), Americans for the Arts’ annual Creative Industries Reports and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. The CDP data includes FY 2012 data profiles from 407 nonprofit arts and cultural organizations. Get a list of all 407 organizations that participated. 

Launched May 2004, the CDP is a powerful online management tool with a robust support network designed to strengthen nonprofit arts and cultural organizations. It also provides funders with reliable, comparable data to inform grantmaking and helps advocates and researchers better understand and communicate the sector’s impact. A growing national model, the CDP is operating in 13 states and the District of Columbia, with 267 funding programs and more than to 14,000 organizations participating across the US.

Making this Report Work for You
Over the years the Creative State MI reports have been a valuable resource to help make the case for the arts, culture, arts education and the creative and design industries. Put the report to work for you by sharing it with community leaders, lawmakers, and decision makers. Let them know that Michigan’s arts, culture and creative and design industries are critically important to our state’s economy, the vitality of our communities, the education of our children, and the lives of people statewide.

Creative State MI is made possible this year through the leadership and generous support of:

Creative Many
Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan
Irving S. Gilmore Foundation
The Kresge Foundation
MASCO Corporation Foundation
Michigan Council for the Arts and Cultural Affairs

Contact Creative Many 
Hard copies of the report are available and can be ordered for a nominal fee to help cover printing and mailing costs. Requests for the report and for more information please contact Creative Many’s Director of Public Policy, Sarah Triplett at or by phone at 517.599.7784.