Culture and Communities

Culture is at the essence of community. The Center looks at the role that culture plays in community development, combating sprawl, revitalizing rural districts and urban centers, and improving quality of life and the benefits of social capital.

Through historic preservation, cultural tourism and civic engagement, culture plays an integral part in economic revitalization, in enlivening neighborhoods, and in community development. Beyond economic significance, culture influences quality of life. Social capital, common values and important community bonds are reinforced by participating in cultural activities. Critical elements in promoting ethnic and economic diversity, art and culture can also create debate and disparate views.

Furthermore, definitions of both community and culture are changing in the new century when virtual neighborhoods and online networks work both within a shared geography and across the globe.

The Center for Arts and Culture tracks public policies at the federal, state, and local levels which directly affect the quality of life and economic health of communities.

The Center is also working to strength cultural policy activity at the local level through its Cultural Policy at the Grassroots initiative.