California Arts Council

State of California

Press Release Detail

May 18, 2017Kimberly Brown

2017 California Creative Economy Report Reveals State's Robust Industries Lead Nation

Report includes new analysis of affordable artist housing and retaining and supporting California artists and creative workers

LOS ANGELES - The findings of the 2017 Otis Report on the Creative Economy of California were released today in Hollywood by Otis College of Art and Design.

Since 2013, the California Arts Council has supported Otis College of Art and Design and its research partner, the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC), to generate the Otis Report on the Creative Economy of California. The Otis Report is an invaluable tool to assess the tremendous impact and influence of the state's creative sector on the economy.

Now in its fourth year, this year's Otis Report on the Creative Economy of California features an addendum analyzing issues of affordable artist housing and retaining and supporting California artists and creative workers, authored by Artspace Projects and developed with support from the California Arts Council. Additionally, the statewide report highlights local creative industries via eight regional snapshots; including the Bay Area, Capital Region, Central Coast, Central Valley, Inland Empire, San Diego and the Imperial Valley, Southern California, and Upstate California.

"Each year, we look forward to the data the Otis Report brings surrounding California's creative industries," said California Arts Council Chair Donn K. Harris. "Time and again, the numbers paint an intricate picture of one of the largest and most successful economies in the world, due in large part to our creative workforce and its ripple effect. This year's report, and its new addendum on artist housing, are no different-and proof positive that investment in the arts means an investment in our state."

Significant findings include:

  • Creative economy output totaled $406.5 billion (direct, indirect, and induced).
  • The creative economy generated 1.6 million jobs (direct, indirect, and induced), and those wage and salary workers earned $136 billion in total labor income.
  • Property taxes, state and local personal income taxes, and sales taxes directly and indirectly generated by the creative industries totaled $16.7 billion across all of California.
  • From 2010 to 2015, direct wage and salary employment in California's creative industries increased by 88,600 jobs to 747,600, an increase of 13.5 percent.
  • Creative occupations often require high levels of education or skills training, with close to 50 percent of those examined requiring a bachelor's degree or higher.
  • Artist surveys show a threat of displacement and significant need for more affordable, appropriate and safe housing and workspaces throughout the state.


On Wednesday, May 24 at 1:30 p.m., the Joint Committee on the Arts, chaired by Senator Ben Allen, will meet at the state Capitol for an informational hearing exploring the report's findings and considerations related to safe and affordable housing and work spaces for artists in California.

The 2017 Otis Report is available for download now at For key findings and infographics, view the Fast Facts on California's Creative Economy.

About the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation
As the Southern California region's premier economic development organization, the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC) provides collaborative, innovative and strategic economic development leadership to promote a globally competitive, prosperous and growing L.A. County economy to improve the health and well-being of residents and communities and enable those residents to meet their basic human need for a job.

About Otis College of Art and Design
Established in 1918, Otis College of Art and Design offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in a wide variety of visual and applied arts, media, and design. Core programs in liberal arts, business practices, and community-driven projects support the College's mission to prepare diverse students to enrich our world through their creativity, skill, and vision.

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The mission of the California Arts Council, a state agency, is to advance California through the arts and creativity. The Council is committed to building public will and resources for the arts; fostering accessible arts initiatives that reflect contributions from all of California's diverse populations; serving as a thought leader and champion for the arts; and providing effective and relevant programs and services.

Members of the California Arts Council include: Chair Donn K. Harris, Vice Chair Nashormeh Lindo, Larry Baza, Phoebe Beasley, Christopher Coppola, Juan Devis, Kathleen Gallegos, Jaime Galli, Louise McGuinness, Steven Oliver, and Rosalind Wyman. Learn more at

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