LexArts has partnered with Sound Diplomacy, a global research and strategy consultancy, to develop an Arts and Cultural Economy Audit and Strategic Plan for the City of Lexington. The development of this audit and strategic plan will provide valuable information on the impact of arts on the city in an effort to spur continued investment in the wider creative economy. The plan will be aimed at advancing LexArts efforts to foster the equitable and inclusive development of Lexington’s wider creative economy.

To support this, Sound Diplomacy and LexArts are hosting a number of stakeholder roundtables on the arts and cultural landscape in Lexington. The goal of this work is to gain a better understanding of the on-the-ground realities associated with working in the arts and culture ecosystem in Lexington from the point of view of as many voices as possible.

In an effort to achieve this goal, we are holding a stakeholder engagement session to hear from residents of Lexington. Participants will be asked to share their experiences and perceptions of Lexington’s arts and cultural landscape to better understand its strengths, as well as areas for strategic growth.

We want to hear from you!

LexArts, with and on behalf of the City of Lexington, is working with Sound Diplomacy to develop an Arts & Culture Master Design Strategy.

The arts and culture sector in Lexington makes significant contributions to the social and economic fabric of the City by providing a vehicle for cross-cultural expression, creating jobs, encouraging tourism, and strengthening the City’s brand. However, supporting and developing the arts and culture economy requires a comprehensive understanding of its value to the City of Lexington. As Lexington looks to better leverage its arts and cultural economy, it is necessary to assess the current state of affairs and ensure that a well-designed strategy is in place to fully optimize the power of art and culture as a social asset and an economic engine.


Through extensive community engagement from a wide variety of stakeholders working in, related to, and affected by Lexington’s cultural and creative economy, the objectives of the arts and culture master design strategy include the following:

  • Develop Lexington’s identity and vision as the arts and culture center of Kentucky.
  • Cultivate a sense of ownership of the arts and culture ecosystem by working with the local community.
  • Discover what arts and cultural assets Lexington currently has and what it is lacking by mapping the City’s arts and culture ecosystem and creating a set of regional and national benchmarks to measure it against.
  • Devise a set of implementable, global-leading policies to attract, retain and support talent, with a focus on women, minority-owned, and very small business, as well as wider workforce development.
  • Formalize arts and culture in Lexington by developing a comprehensive framework of strategies, best practices, and associated promotion strategy.
  • Create a sense of community by bringing the Lexington arts and culture industry together.



Opportunities to Provide Feedback

Lexington Arts & Culture Ecosystem Survey

This survey is aimed at organizations and creatives operating in the Lexington arts and culture ecosystem, as well as members of the general public who consume arts and culture. Broadly speaking, the arts and culture ecosystem includes organizations, businesses, creative individuals, and arts and culture consumers.


The goal of this survey is to identify the challenges and opportunities that participants in the arts and culture ecosystem face and identify any common goals shared by local creators and industry leaders to ensure a healthy and growing local arts and culture ecosystem that reflects the City of Lexington. Depending on your role in the arts and culture ecosystem, the survey will take between 5 to 10 minutes to complete.


The survey results will help form recommendations and an action plan for the Lexington Arts & Culture Master Design Strategy. Please follow the page for updates as work continues towards a draft and final report.


Thank you for participating. The survey is now closed.

About Sound Diplomacy

Sound Diplomacy is a global research and strategy consultancy committed to building and supporting sustainable ecosystems that bring economic development to people, places, and cities. Sound Diplomacy provides research and recommendations to businesses and policymakers to help them make informed decisions to stimulate economic, social, and cultural growth. Sound Diplomacy’s team of economists, analysts, researchers, and consultants are based across the UK, Europe, North America, and Latin America and have delivered results across six continents, in over 100 cities and 25 countries.