WESTAF (Western States Art Federation) is a nonprofit arts service organization responsible for the development and ongoing maintenance of the CVSuite. WESTAF’s mission is to empower the arts.
We developed the Creative Vitality Suite to make it easy for organizations with the creative economy to access data, explore data, and most important, use creative economy data to demonstrate their impact, now, and in the future.
Data Partners / Sources
History and future of CVSuite
The CVSuite online tool emerged out the need of public sector arts organizations to define their interests in broader terms than the traditional nonprofit arts. As the understanding of these entities evolved to one in which they saw their role as including work in the development of the overall creative economy, having data about what they were engaging and ways to measure the progress of that engagement became important. Simultaneously, computer-enhanced data collection and the applied modeling of data became more widely understood and accepted, thus making the collection and analysis of data more accessible. The first iteration of the tool was the Creative Vitality Index™ (CVI ™). This index measured the relative economic health of a region’s creative economy and allowed for the comparison of that health with other regions. Reports were generated manually when requested.
The tool continues to include the CVI but today is a full suite of creative economy data available on a subscription basis. It is a fully self-functioning SaaS tool, meaning, you can extract data when you need it, as often as you need it. The data inside the tool not only contains the proprietary CVI™, an index for comparisons but also detailed information on creative industries and occupations, non-profit revenues, and granting data for a specified region. Our clients use the tool for a variety of purposes including benchmarking, messaging, comparing, and conducting analyses that support the creation of policy and strategy. Or just to be the smartest person in the room.
Where do we go next? We will continue to listen to our users and experts in the creative economy field and enhance our tool to meet their needs. We know that one of their most important needs is to possess data that allow them to tell their creative economy story with confidence. The most recent enhancements of the tool include ethnicity data within occupations and industries and the ability to see how your creative efforts contribute the the overall economy.
We are excited about the future of the arts. With the data now at our fingertips, we can enter the future knowing what our contributions are to the economy and communicate these contributions with confidence.