This report offers a first snapshot of how corporations and corporate foundations engage arts and culture to achieve their Corporate Social Responsibility/ Corporate Community Involvement (CSR/CCI) goals. The report is based on research about recent U.S. corporate giving patterns and trends, as well as telephone interviews with corporate leaders, CSR/CCI officers, and corporate foundation executives whose companies support arts and culture as a strategy to achieve their CSR/CCI goals. It represents one facet of an updated look at private sector support of arts, community, civic, and social change in the United States that Animating Democracy will release in 2015.
The report identifies three main CSR/CCI drivers that are shifting the focus on the kinds of arts and cultural projects, programs, and organizations that corporations are interested in and supporting. These drivers are: 1) to enhance corporate investments in community and economic development, education, and health and other priority issue areas; 2) to promote and reinforce company mission, core values, and brand; and 3) to achieve internal CSR/CCI goals, such as employee engagement/volunteerism and workforce diversity. Achieving CSR goals through art is a path of experimentation for some corporations, while others are supporting programs and organizations with sustained investment for the greatest potential community or social impact. Following are some key themes and observations about how corporations are supporting arts and culture in relation to CSR/CCI drivers.