The Key Points

Everyone Benefits from The Arts

The Arts matter. They benefit individuals and communities. Everything is connected; great art engages and inspires everyone: from children with crayons to professionals with multi-media installations; local square dancers to the National Ballet; grandmothers’ quilts to cutting-edge fashion designs. 

The Arts improve quality of life.

The Arts strengthen communities by:

  • helping people feel involved,
  • creating a sense of belonging,
  • enabling intercultural understanding and friendship.

The Arts enable innovation & education.

Arts Benefit Everyone

Canadians support the arts. In a 2015 study for Business for the Arts, over 80% of Canadians surveyed said the following are good reasons for supporting the arts:

  • The arts enhance creativity and innovation
  • Arts education can assist children at risk in channeling their energies in a more productive direction
  • Arts education assists in the emotional and intellectual development of children
  • The arts help people understand other cultures
  • The arts can contribute to personal well being (1)

Canadians have very positive attitudes toward arts and culture. According to a 2012 Canadian Heritage Study, 92% of Canadians agreed strongly that:

  • arts and culture make a community a better place to live
  • arts experiences are a valuable way of bringing together people from different languages and cultural traditions
  • arts are an important way of helping people think and work creatively.(2)

See More: Everone Benefits from The Arts, The Numbers


2. Phoenix Strategic Perspectives, Final Report: Arts and Heritage in Canada: Access and Availability Survey 2012. Prepared for the Department of Canadian Heritage, November 2012.

Every Child Deserves an Arts Education

Teaching the Arts is valuable: The arts teach cultural literacy, artistic skills and techniques as well as a wide range of other valuable skills.

Parents value the arts. In a 2015 survey of Canadian Parents:

  • 87% agreed, "The arts help children be more expressive."
  • 84% agreed "Engaging children in the arts helps them be more creative and expressive."
  • 83% agreed "Engaging children in arts activities is important or their overall development."

More Arts Education Outcomes include:

  • Skills such as critical and creative thinking, social development, and; increased motivation to participate in the community, and lifelong involvement in the arts.(2)

  • Arts-engaged low-income students are more likely than non-arts-engaged peers to attend and succeed in college, obtain employment with a future, volunteer in their communities and participate in voting.
  • High-Quality Arts Education is a first step towards using Arts to “unlock” other subjects. Arts-integration models help close the achievement gap and support crucial brain development in learning.(3)

Dianne Warren's 2016 report, Future Innovators: Developing Creativity Through K-12 Arts Education in Saskatchewan Schoolsconfirms "the arts are essential to innovative thinking and behavior and can be applied in all K-12 schools through policy change, inquiry-based curriculum including arts education curriculum, and open dialogue among science, math, technology and arts education teachers." (4)

Arts Education can develop the innovative minds and creative skills needed to compete successfully in the 21st century workplace.(2)

See Also: More Arts Education


(3) President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities (PCAH), Reinvesting in Arts Education: Winning America’s Future through Creative Schools, Washington, DC, May 2011.

(4) Warren, Dianne. Future Innovators: Developing Creativity Through K-12 Arts Education in Saskatchewan Schools. Saskatchewan Arts Alliance, August 15, 2016. p6.

The Arts Innovate

Arts Involvement Drives Innovation:

Arts Education develops 5 skills that underpin innovative behavior and are linked to the innovation process in youth. These skills match what employers say they most need in their new recruits, but which they too often find missing. 

  • Creativity (imagination, connecting ideas, tackling and solving problems, curiosity);
  • Self-efficacy (self-belief, self-assurance, self-awareness, feelings of empowerment, social confidence);
  • Energy (drive, enthusiasm, motivation, hard work, persistence and commitment);
  • Risk-propensity (a combination of risk tolerance and the ability to take calculated risks); and 
  • Leadership (vision and the ability to mobilize commitment). (1)

Turning STEM into STEAM: "the arts are essential to innovative thinking and behavior and can be applied in all K-12 schools through policy change, inquiry-based curriculum including arts education curriculum, and open dialogue among science, math, technology and arts education teachers" - Dianne Warren's Future Innovators: Developing Creativity Through K-12 Arts Education in Saskatchewan Schools (2).

Providing STEM professionals with significant arts exposure (throughout their lifetimes), may be essential to their creative capital potential.(3) 

Find out more: The Arts Innovate


1) C. Brooke Dobni, PhD, Achieving Growth through Innovation: The Role of Arts Education in Supporting Economic Sustainability, May 2014.

2) Warren, Dianne. Future Innovators: Developing Creativity Through K-12 Arts Education in Saskatchewan Schools. Saskatchewan Arts Alliance, August 15, 2016. p6.

(3)LaMore, Rex, Robert Root-Bernstein, Michele Root-Bernstein, John H. Schweitzer, James L. Lawton, Eileen Roraback, Amber Peruski, Megan VanDyke and Laleah Fernandez, “Arts and Crafts: Critical to Economic Innovation” Economic Development Quarterly 2013 27: 221 originally published online 28 April 2013. DOI: 10.1177/0891242413486186.

    Invest in the Arts

    Culture GDP in Saskatchewan was $1.4B in 2014, representing 1.3% of the province’s economy, a 23.6% increase from 2010. (1)

    The number of culture jobs in Saskatchewan was 12,581, or 2.1% of the total jobs in province, a 6.2% increase from 2010. (1)

    92% of Canadians believe that arts experiences are a valuable way of bringing together people from different languages and cultural traditions. (2)

    Artists play an important, valuable role in Saskatchewan society and deserve fair compensation their work. Public access to art and artists – through distribution, exhibition, education and training – benefits Saskatchewan and all its citizens. 

    Arts organizations and associations are integral to connecting artists and their work with the public through creation, dissemination and exhibition of artistic works, leadership and education.

    Find More: Invest in the Arts


    1) Statistics Canada. Provincial and Territorial Culture Indicators, 2010 to 2014. Released May 11, 2016. Catalogue no. 13-604-M ISBN 978-0-660-04937-3.

    2) Phoenix Strategic Perspectives, The Arts and Heritage in Canada – Access and Availability 2012.