2019 ACTA mentor artist in Korean bojagi textiles, Youngmin Lee, at work in her studio in Pleasanton.

Living Cultural Heritage and the Traditional and Folk Arts in the Nonprofit Sector

Data on Scope, Finances, and Funding

In 2021, the Alliance for California Traditional Arts commissioned Dr. Carole Rosenstein, Professor of Arts Management and Affiliate Professor of Folklore at George Mason University, to offer a scan of folk and traditional arts organizations in the U.S. using existing quantitative data. Rosenstein, alongside Mirae Kim, PhD of George Mason University and Neville Vakharia, MS of Drexel University, produced this study titled “Living Cultural Heritage and the Traditional and Folk Arts in the Nonprofit Sector: Data on Scope, Finances, and Funding.”

The paper reports on a study using data from the National Center for Charitable Statistics, Candid (formerly known as the Foundation Center/Guidestar), and the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies to assess the current universe of nonprofit Ethnic, Cultural, and Folk organizations and provide a snapshot of current levels of private and state-level public funding to the subsector. The study contributes to a small but increasingly imperative body of research on arts and cultural organizations that serve underserved communities and communities of color. Better quantitative data on and analysis of such organizations is necessary to identifying inequity and building equity in the arts and culture, a pressing priority for the sector. This report underscores the need for more concerted attention to research in the field and for building more consistent taxonomies, data sets and ongoing analysis.

ACTA gratefully acknowledges the research team’s contributions to this effort. The authors of this report are solely responsible for the content and opinions expressed, and any omissions herein.

Click to download the study here.

The authors

Carole Rosenstein, PhD
Professor of Arts Management
Affiliate Professor of Folklore
George Mason University

Mirae Kim, PhD
Visiting Scholar, Independent Sector (2021-2022)
Associate Professor of Nonprofit Studies
George Mason University

Neville Vakharia, MS
Associate Dean of Research and Planning
Westphal College of Media Arts & Design
Associate Professor of Arts Administration & Museum Leadership
Drexel University

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