According to a report from Center for An Urban Future, creative industries have been among the fastest growing segments of New York City’s economy over the last decade, and they outpace traditional economic engines like finance and insurance. Creative New York 2015 documents the economic impact of the city’s nonprofit arts organizations and for-profit creative businesses. It also highlights the contribution that artists and creative professionals have had on the growth of small businesses and the revitalization of neighborhoods throughout the city, but notes that they introduce gentrification in the continuous pursuit of affordable space. The Rockefeller Brothers Fund was a cofunder of the report.
The report also includes 22 recommendations to the city and state governments to ensure New York City remains affordable and able to attract creative talent. One example is the creation of new artist residency programs using the model of Seniors Partnering with Artists Citywide, in which participating artists receive a stipend and access to workspace in exchange for leading arts programming and classes for the elderly. This would open up dormant spaces in city spaces like libraries, community centers, homeless shelters, and public housing and offer programming to underserved populations.