Museums play an essential role in cultural and social life across the US. They tell our stories, preserve our heritage, interpret the past, and explore the future. In this way, museums enrich our lives daily: feeding a hunger for knowledge and igniting our imaginations. They provide forums for learning, but also a place for enjoyment and escape. Museums preserve and protect more than a billion objects, safeguarding these treasures for future generations. Museums, widely defined, also provide places where communities can come together, interact, understand, and appreciate cultural diversity.
Beyond the culture value and role that museums play, the sector also drives essential value to the national economy by generating GDP, stimulating jobs and contributing taxes. In 2016, museums supported more than $50 billion in US GDP, supported more than 726,000 jobs, generated nearly $16 billion in income and contributed $12 billion in federal and state and local taxes.
The study, commissioned by the American Alliance for Museums with support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, provides a new, detailed look into the economic value museums generate in the US and individual states.
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