CreateNYC: A Look at How NYC’s Cultural Roadmap Makes a Case for the Social Value of the Arts

CreateNYC: A Look at How NYC’s Cultural Roadmap Makes a Case for the Social Value of the Arts

By Kristin Sakoda Deputy Commissioner & General Counsel, NYC Department of Cultural Affairs and Edwin Torres, Deputy Commissioner, NYC Department of Cultural Affairs

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Hester Street Collaborative

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Tuesday, November 21, 2017 - 11:40am

In July, the City of New York released CreateNYC: A Cultural Plan for All New Yorkers, a first-of-its-kind comprehensive plan to establish New York City’s cultural roadmap for the next decade.  The plan sets forth objectives and strategies for achieving a more inclusive, equitable, and resilient cultural ecosystem. It examines a number of issue areas including diversity, equity and inclusion, education, affordability, and health of the cultural sector that are essential to a vibrant, creative city. Following recommendations in each of the issue areas, CreateNYC also lays out a number of immediate actions including a targeted increase in City support for arts and culture in low-income communities.

Led by the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, the CreateNYC cultural planning process began with an intensive research, discovery, and data collection phase that laid a foundation for the work to come. We harnessed the voices of nearly 200,000 New Yorkers in a robust community engagement process to inform CreateNYC.  In addition to hundreds of public meetings and months of digital engagement, these efforts included a Siena College Research Institute public opinion phone poll of NYC residents, which revealed that an eye-popping 97% of respondents agree that arts and culture are important to quality of life.  The poll also uncovered barriers to cultural participation such as transportation and cost.

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