Creative Alliance Milwaukee Vision and Strategic Plan

In April 2011, when Creative Alliance Milwaukee was launched, we worked to develop a vision and strategic plan, based upon all the good work contributed on the highly successful Creativity Works! project.  Using that work as a starting point, we gathered a small group of artists, community, education, and business leaders to hone in on a more specific vision and plan to provide focus for the organization.  During the fall of 2011, the Creative Alliance Board and staff worked to fine-tune the following proposed vision and plan. Should you be interested in helping with any of the presented initiatives, please email Maggie Kuhn Jacobus.

Creative Alliance Milwaukee 2012 Vision and Strategic Plan

Creativity Works! Final Report (2011)

This presentation was prepared by the Cultural Alliance of Greater Milwaukee with Mt. Auburn Associates and Regional Technology Strategies, Inc. under award #068705469 from the Economic Development Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, and under an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. The statements, findings, conclusions, and recommendations are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Development Administration or the U.S. Department of Commerce, or the National Endowment for the Arts.


Full_Report (includes Executive Summary)


New Engines of Growth: Five Roles for Arts, Culture and Design

With concerns over job creation and business growth holding a prominent—and persistent—position on policy agendas today, governors are increasingly finding innovative ways to support economic growth, according to a new report from the National Governors Association.

New Engines of Growth:  Five Roles for Arts, Culture, and Design focuses on the role that arts, culture and design can play in governors’ policies to create jobs and boost their economies in the short run and transition to an innovation-based economy in the long run.

In particular, arts, culture and design can assist states with economic growth because they can serve the following roles:

  • Provide a fast-growth, dynamic industry cluster;
  • Help mature industries become more competitive;
  • Provide the critical ingredients for innovative places;
  • Catalyze community revitalization; and
  • Deliver a better-prepared workforce.

New Engines of Growth:  Five Roles for Arts, Culture, and Design


Arts & Economic Prosperity IV – Economic Impact Study of the Nonprofit Arts and Culture Industry

Creative Alliance Milwaukee joins the Wisconsin Arts Board and Americans for the Arts in announcing the results of a comprehensive economic impact study of the nonprofit arts and culture industry conducted in greater Milwaukee over the past two years.  The study reveals that local nonprofit arts organizations generate $299.6 million in economic activity in 2010, representing an increase of 20% over the 2005 figure of $249 million. The study also reveals results of over $38 million in local and state tax revenues, and 10,895 in full-time equivalent jobs (which is a 24% increase over the 8,800 full-time equivalent jobs in 2005).

The Creative Alliance was greater Milwaukee’s host organization and helped to facilitate the gathering of the detailed economic data from 299 greater Milwaukee arts organizations as well as 542 audience intercept surveys.  The study measures only the impact provided by organizations and audiences, and excludes spending by individual artists and the for-profit arts and entertainment sector (like Broadway or the film industry). In this study, economic impact is defined as the employment (full-time equivalent jobs), resident household income (salary, wages, proprietary income), and government revenue (taxes, license fees, and all the ways governments collect revenue) generated by the dollars spent in the community by nonprofit arts organizations and their audiences. The $299.6 million total includes $220 million in spending by arts organizations and $80 million in event-related spending by arts audiences – excluding the costs of admission. The $80 million in event-related spending by arts audiences reflects an average of $18.66 per person in spending for hotels, restaurants, parking, souvenirs, refreshments, or other similar costs—with non-local attendees spending significantly more than local attendees ($26.39 compared to $16.48 – a 60% increase from nonresidents). Greater Milwaukee represents 56% of the total Wisconsin economic activity.

Arts & Economic Prosperity IV – Milwaukee Region

Creative Collaborative Spaces Report (Summer 2012)

A new report shows that Milwaukee is home to more than 20 “coworking” or “maker” spaces that allow local entrepreneurs and innovators to develop ideas into products or services that hold potential to result in business startups.

The report was released by Creative Alliance Milwaukee in conjunction with the Greater Milwaukee Committee’s Innovation in Milwaukee (MiKE) initiative. The report focuses on 25 spaces throughout the Milwaukee 7 region and identifies some of their challenges, as well as provides recommendations for growth and sustainability.

Coworking and maker spaces included in this report range from nonprofit  to for-profit entities, serving small startups to large corporations.  The report showcase the multiple uses for these collaborative spaces, underscoring  that they’re not just for artists and entrepreneurs – large corporations can also use the spaces to drive innovation across different business units.  These creative workspaces are signs of a changing way of working.  People increasingly work in places other than their offices and on teams that draw expertise from virtually anywhere in the world.  Innovation rarely thrives in isolation, which is why these spaces offer a unique opportunity for individuals and companies to connect to a constant infusion of new ideas and to form new relationships with entrepreneurs, students, universities and businesses.

The report also classifies each space as one of four types: resourceful property owners (for-profit; examples: Hudson Business Lounge and Flux Design), innovative soil (non-profits; examples: Bucketworks, ART Milwaukee and OPEN MiKE), imaginative hobbyists (non-profits, examples: Milwaukee Makers Space and Studio 84) and clever coops (cooperatives, examples: Studio 420b, Safi Studios).

Creative Collaborative Spaces: An Inventory of Milwaukee’s Innovative Places


Creative Education Project (March 2012)

Creative Alliance Milwaukee received a grant from Northwestern Mutual Foundation last fall to explore the reframing of arts education to creative education in order to 1) expand the community educational programming beyond arts to include design, film/media and new creative technologies, and 2) to create a better vocabulary for dialogue between arts education and the business community through a focus on creativity skill development.

This project involved a community-wide Advisory Council as well as significant internet research along with in-depth interviews with local senior human resource executives on ‘creativity’ in the workplace. The findings, conclusions and recommended next steps have profound implications for building a bridge between the self-identified creativity needs of the workplace and the creative education offerings of this community. This was an exciting project and CAM is very grateful for the Northwestern Mutual Foundation’s belief in this exploration and the hard work of all members of the Advisory Council.


Full_Report (includes Executive Summary)



Graphic Designer

We are currently seeking an experienced Graphic Designer to join our Kenosha, WI office on a part-time basis (16–20 hours/week). The position will rep

The Spot 4MKE

(posted: Jun 17, 2015)

What would like to do on The Spot 4MKE: Perform? Vend? Use it for free practice space? Demonstrate a skill or teach a class? All this and more is possible! Click here to learn more and tell us how you'd like to use The Spot

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