This issue of the Community Development Innovation Review explores the power of arts and culture to transform the practice of community development. Published in partnership with ArtPlace America and PolicyLink, this issue takes a deep dive into the lessons learned from the Community Development Investments program and offers reflections from industry leaders on the implications for the broader community development field. The diverse range of authors includes artists, community developers, bankers, and researchers, and their collective voices frame a rich conversation on how openness to the creative process can help community development organizations better achieve their mission of expanding opportunity for low-income communities.
Download the full issue (pdf, 3.8mb)
Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. 2019. “Transforming Community Development through Arts and Culture,” Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco Community Development Innovation Review 2019-2. doi: 10.24148/cdir2019-02
Table of Contents
How Organizations Evolve When Community Development Embraces Arts and Culture
The integration of arts into community development has taken root and changed the ways community development organizations strategize across culture and leadership. This article explores how internal restructuring can support the deep incorporation of arts and culture into the daily fabric of the organization.
Arts and Culture from the Inside, Not Just on the Outside
On its journey to integrate arts and culture into its core operations and connect more deeply with visitors and area residents, the Jackson Medical Mall discovered that its staff was its most impactful cultural asset.
“The Way We Work”: Integrating Arts and Culture into an Organization
A rural theater artist partners with Southwest Minnesota Housing Partnership and highlights the value of trusting the creative process, taking risks, and investing the necessary time.
Dialogue on Organizational Growth and Change
This conversation explores how the integration of artistic practice into community development efforts spurred personal transformation and organizational growth and change.
Building Capacity for Creative Community Development
NeighborWorks America is building capacity within community development nonprofits by expanding its training, outcome evaluation, and peer learning offerings to more fully support work at the intersection of arts and community development.
Lessons on Collaborative Practice between Artists and Community Developers
This essay examines how community developers designed collaborative practices between their organizations and artists, from bringing creative expressions of local history to new audiences, to facilitating internal strategic planning.
The Connection between Public Space and Cultural Resources: Reflections on our work in Strawberry Mansion
Community-driven, arts-based facilitation, in partnership with community development organizations, can grow in impact. A holistic process rooted in the arts helped transform an underutilized park into a community space that fosters dialogue and relationship-building.
Mimes and Road Construction: An Unlikely Partnership for Community Investment
What might happen if unlikely partners came together to solve a problem and had room to experiment? MimeSpenard, a creative placemaking project that took place in Anchorage, Alaska answered these questions in black and white. With, well, a pop of red.
Dialogue on Working with Artists
This conversation explores the dynamics and practical realities of collaborative practice between community development organizations and artists.
Culture and Creativity Are Fundamental to Resilient Communities
Community development strategies that honor cultural identity and facilitate creative expression—often led by artists, designers, and culture bearers—can increase social cohesion and resilience.
Outcomes in Communities of Arts and Cultural Strategies: The Role of Organizing and Engagement
The integration of arts and culture into the processes of community development organizing and engagement transformed the scope of organizational outcomes.
Ibasho: A Place of Belonging
Sustainable Little Tokyo’s project ART@341FSN demonstrates the power of artists and arts-based strategies in advocating for Little Tokyo’s culture, history, and future.
From Zuni Art to The Sky is the Limit!
An artist’s journey to help center Zuni culture in the design, building, and programming of a park and community center, in the process, transformed and empowered a community to shape their future.
Dialogue on Organizing and Strengthening Social Fabric
An exploration of how strengthening the social fabric and promoting the cultural identity of communities can advance progress toward youth development and neighborhood preservation.
Integrating Arts and Culture into Community Development to Improve Outcomes
Arts and cultural strategies can innovatively address challenges with social cohesion, spur economic development, and produce positive effects in the built environment that benefit current residents.
Creating Process for Change
A theater script that reflects on creative process and shares lessons learned from working with community development organizations and arts practitioners across fields and geographies.
Leading Change: Reflections from Chief Executives of CDI Organizations
Leaders reflect on what motivated them to incorporate arts and cultural strategies into their agencies, how it changed their approach to leadership, and the differences it made for their communities.
Community History, Identity, and Social Change: Reflections from Researchers on the Potential of Arts & Culture
Researchers from diverse disciplinary backgrounds take stock of how we could advance the systematic understanding of the role of arts and culture in community development and social movements through research.
Multiple Ways of Knowing: Translating Outcomes Between the Arts and Community Development
This article reflects on the history of research in creative placemaking and lessons learned from ArtPlace’s ongoing research strategies.
Creative Placemaking in Government: Past and Future
The National Endowment for the Arts celebrates 10 years of strengthening communities across America through investments and support of creative placemaking projects.
State Policy Innovations to Support Creative Placemaking
Innovations at the intersection of cultural and community development policy can create the conditions for successful creative placemaking work.
Do I Need Special Glasses? Seeing Arts and Culture as Part of Community Development for Financial Institutions
An exploration into various ways financial institutions can support investments into arts and culture by aligning them with community development frameworks and institutions.
CultureBank: A Vision for a New Investment System
Arts organizations should focus on developing the conditions for new futures to emerge. As a society, we must value the essential role the artist plays as a key collaborator in community investment.
Widening the Lens: Arts, Culture, and an Equitable Future for All Communities
Michael McAfee, president and CEO of PolicyLink, and Rip Rapson, president and CEO of the Kresge Foundation and Chair of the Funders Council of ArtPlace America, explore why arts and culture strategies are central to equitable development and racial justice.