SMU DataArts - Cultural Data Profile



"Both DataArts and the National Center for Arts Research at SMU have contributed enormously to the arts and cultural sector. This merger allows for necessary growth and for data resources to be more readily accessible for the field. Arts organizations thrive when they have the tools to make informed decisions in today’s constant state of change. I commend this decision that I know will help promote arts vibrancy and healthy communities in America."

- Robert Lynch, President & CEO, Americans for the Arts

"Very few opportunities arise to fundamentally alter the behavior of arts leaders, board members, donors and the entire arts and culture sector. The merger of DataArts and NCAR consolidates and improves the sector’s capacity to gather, analyze and inform systems for change, accountability and future outcomes."

-- Zenetta Drew, Dallas Black Dance Theatre

"This is a major win for the nonprofit arts and culture sector. By leveraging the strengths of both NCAR and DataArts, the new combined entity ensures that all arts and cultural organizations - regardless of their age, size or mission - will have access to the highest quality tools and resources available, so that they can make informed, data-driven decisions now and in the future."

-- Larry Bomback, Senior Vice President of Administration, Curtis Institute of Music

José Bowen

President, Goucher College

“Combined, NCAR and DataArts will be able to integrate the data collection, research and implementation tools that our arts and culture sector so vitally needs.”

“I joined the DataArts board specifically because I believe that a healthy cultural sector is one of the underpinnings of America’s political, economic and social welfare. DataArts and NCAR were already doing great work both separately and collaboratively to help cultural institutions better understand how to operate efficiently and meet the needs of their constituents. Bringing them together into one organization will enable them to support arts and cultural leaders even more effectively with data, resources and insights that increase impact.”

- Rich Mintz, Chair of DataArts 

“I invest my philanthropic support in transformational initiatives with expansive potential. From its inception, NCAR’s vision and mission were strategically in sync with my own. SMU DataArts, through the merged expertise of NCAR and DataArts, creates a powerhouse of arts data research and capacity-building services empowering small, medium and larger arts organizations to reach their highest potential.”

-- Donna Wilhelm, SMU DataArts Board Member

"DataArts and the National Center for Arts Research at SMU have such a natural synergy. Aside from what appears to be a smart operational efficiency created by this merger, the community that presently benefits from their individual contributions will get more than twice the value from this consolidated and streamlined business enterprise. As a marketing practitioner for years, I benefited from the launch and initial outputs of these respected entities. At this time in their respective life cycles, combining their knowledge and expertise will serve the arts industry at an even higher level."

-- Naomi Grabel, CEO, American Friends of the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra

More Testimonials

"I’m the director of a relatively small, regional arts organization, and access to data I can use in my organization makes all the difference. By combining forces and resources, DataArts and the National Center for Arts Research at SMU will be better positioned to serve the field with useful, practical, and important data to help organizations like mine to thrive and grow. Our communities need great arts organizations now more than ever – and as we look to the future and reaffirm our commitment to bringing people together through the arts, informed data is necessary to guide our decision-making and strategic planning."

-- Gretchen Dietrich, Executive Director, Utah Museum of Fine Arts

"NCAR and DataArts are pioneers in a national movement bringing data insights to cultural organizations and supporters. Our combined organization will equip cultural leaders with the knowledge and tools to make data-informed decisions, for the sake of their art. Together, we will increase awareness about the field’s challenges and join others in advocating for solutions that address them."

-- Rebecca Thomas, Principal, Rebecca Thomas & Associates


"The merger of these two leading organizations provides an exciting opportunity to equip arts leaders to make more informed decisions with high quality data and insights."

-- Melissa Fetter, SMU DataArts Board Member 

"The pioneering work by Zannie Voss and her team has illuminated the unclear waters of the art world, and with the merger, the information is more accessible and available."

-- Tony Meier, Owner, Anthony Meier Fine Art