SMU DataArts - Cultural Data Profile


ForEvery County in the U.S.

The Arts Vibrancy Index Report & Map

Identifying the 40 most arts-vibrant communities across the U.S. based on data-informed indices

SMU DataArts recognizes that arts and cultural organizations are inextricably tied to their communities and combines data from nonprofit arts and cultural organizations with data for the communities in which they reside to identify factors that affect the health and sustainability of arts organizations across the nation.

The report provides insight into which counties across the United States have the highest scores on three key measures: Arts Providers, Arts Dollars, and Government Support, which can fluctuate year to year. Additionally, our interactive map provides scores for every county across the United States, allowing readers to explore and compare the differences with the latest available data.

Use This Report and Map To:

  • Celebrate and remind ourselves of the arts’ enduring importance, resiliency, and vibrancy.
  • Help arts leaders, businesses, government agencies, funders, and engaged citizens understand the overall intensity and capacity of the community’s arts and culture sector.
  • Get the recognition your community deserves from its mayors, city council members, and state legislators.
  • Consider what markets are ripe for touring performances or exhibitions or possibly relocation of operations.
  • Benchmark your community against an aspirational set of communities and understand what sets them apart by examining the underlying dimensions of demand, supply, and public support for arts and culture.
  • Better understand how investments to increase arts vibrancy might be best directed in the communities they serve, given existing strengths and opportunities for improvement.

The 2023 Arts Vibrancy Index

San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City, CA, reclaims top spot on the 8th annual list of most arts-vibrant communities for the first time since 2018; Milwaukee-Waukesha, WI and Canton-Massillon, OH secure rankings for the first time ever.

Read the Report

Scores for Every County in the U.S.

What factors make up a community's arts vibrancy, and which cities possess them? We provide scores for every county across the nation on measures of Arts Dollars, Arts Providers, Government Support, Socio-economic and Other Leisure characteristics. Explore and compare how these community characteristics drive performance as well as your community's relative strength on each characteristic.

Find Your County

Arts Vibrancy Through the Years



The 2022 Arts Vibrancy Index Includes Cities Listed for the First Time: Salt Lake City, UT; Ann Arbor, MI; Kalamazoo-Portage, MI; and Brevard, NC.

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In solidarity with the arts organizations that were forced to close their doors, artists and staff who became unemployed, and with all who were lost, we forgo publishing the Arts Vibrancy Report 2021.

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Four cities make their debut on the list: Cincinnati, OH; Wilmington, DE; Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA; and Hailey, ID.

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Eight cities reclaimed spots on the lists: Denver, CO (large); Ithaca, NY and Bremerton-Silverdale, WA (medium); and Steamboat Springs, CO, Vineyard Haven, MA, Hudson, NY, Greenfield Town, MA, and Breckenridge, CO (small).

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More than 20 percent of the communities were entirely new to our lists this year, and four new states were represented: Florida, Nebraska, Ohio, and South Dakota.

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Eight communities (20%) were entirely new to our lists this year, and one new state was represented: Alaska. Four communities were new to the report on the top-10 medium community list: Bremerton-Silverdale, WA; Ithaca, NY; Asheville, NC; and Barnstable Town, MA. Four small communities made the list for the first time – Hudson, NY; Greenfield Town, MA; Oneonta, NY; and Juneau, AK – and Vineyard Haven, MA makes a reappearance from the 2015 report.

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Six communities (15%) from 3 new states were new to our lists this year: Hawaii, Oregon, and Texas. Three new communities – Portland, OR; Austin, TX; and Kansas City, MO – claim a spot on our top-20, large-MSA list, and three new communities – Maui, HI; St Cloud, MN; and Medford, OR – appear for the first time on our top-20 medium and small list.

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No region has cornered the market on arts vibrancy. Cities large and small from every region appear in the top 40 cities. Having that said, there is high representation from Western communities in the set of Medium-Small cities.

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Find Ways to Strengthen Arts Vibrancy in Your Community

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