Creative Economy

  • "As I travel across this country, I have found one thing to be true in state after state: art works. The National Governors’ Association has laid out five strategies currently employed by states to use the arts to help strengthen local economies and drive innovation."
    Rocco LandesmanNational Endowment for the Arts Chairman

While art, theater and musical performance may be the most visible signs of a healthy North Shore creative economy, this sector is fueled as well by hundreds of businesses for that provide creative services or create and promote intellectual property. They include product designers and web designers, chefs, architects and marketing companies, consultants and engineers.

Why here? Research shows that creative business tend to luster where there is a good pool of creative thinkers, access to big city energy and recognition of the importance of life style amenities. Boston’s North Shore has it all.

These businesses use creative thinking to solve problems, help other businesses to become more competitive, and support economic development. The help create a more capable work force. They bring tourists and encourage recreational spending. They also enrich are communities and contribute to the quality of life that draws people and businesses to the North Shore.


  • More than 2600 businesses are part of our regional creative economy, nearly all (87 percent) are sole proprietors.
  • The creative economy in Essex County employs more than 13,600 people and has reported annual revenues of more than $1.2 billion.
  • More than 10 percent of private sector employment on the North Shore can be attributed to part of the creative economy (Seidman, 2008).


  • The Massachusetts Creative Economy Council was created in 2008 specifically to encourage growth of the sector, which also has a strong advocacy group in MassCreative.
  • Montserrat College of Art is the designated North Shore Regional Leader of the Creative Economy Network for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
  • CEANS – the Creative Economy of the North Shore—provides networking and support services to the sector.


Montserrat College of Art | North Shore Music Theatre