Illinois Creative Economy Initiative

Creative Economy Report

As of January 2012, Illinois was home to 33,939 arts-related businesses, both in the for-profit and non-profit sectors, representing 4.33 percent of the 784,624 total businesses located in Illinois. (Americans for the Arts' Creative Industries Report)

In March 2013, Governor Pat Quinn announced the launch of the Illinois Creative Economy Initiative to be organized by Arts Alliance Illinois. To help guide this work, the Alliance assembled a Roundtable comprised of 47 leaders from the government, private, and nonprofit sectors to determine how Illinois can intentionally and strategically leverage its cultural resources to grow jobs, strengthen the workforce, and build more vibrant communities.

The Illinois Creative Economy Roundtable drafted a set of policy recommendations and directives which were submitted to Governor Quinn for review. Subsequently, in June 2014, Arts Alliance Illinois released a new report, The Creative Economy in Illinois, which lays out a framework for defining and developing a creative economy in Illinois. The policy recommendations and directives included in the report highlight the importance of partnership and advocate for a comprehensive approach to empowering the creative sector to further drive Illinois' economy. The Roundtable made two significant recommendations:

  1. Create a new creative economy liaison position within the Governor’s office/Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.
  2. Create a cross-sector Creative Economy Council responsible for developing policies and programs to accelerate economic recovery and create stronger communities.

Read the report and tell us what you think!

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Learn more about the Illinois Creative Economy Initiative, the Roundtable, and additional resources on the impact of the creative economy in Illinois.