Success StoryCreative Placemaking: Extension Fine Arts and Placemaking in Detail

Creative Placemaking: Extension Fine Arts and Placemaking in Detail

Author: Jayoung Koo

Planning Unit: Landscape Architecture

Major Program: Community Design/Creative Placemaking

Outcome: Initial Outcome

As part of the first phase of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) funded “To Support Integration of Creative Placemaking into Cooperative Extension Programming: a Knowledge Building Project,” Jayoung Koo, Melissa Bond, and Simona Balazs presented preliminary extension fine arts and placemaking programming impact findings to the National Association of Community Development Extension Professionals (NACDEP) audience in summer 2020. During the subsequent year, Koo, Bond, and Balazs further researched the detailed activities performed by Fine Arts Extension Agents from 2013 to 2019 in three counties (Pike, Greenup, and Whitley) that continue to house Fine Arts Extension agents. The research team analyzed on-the-ground extension arts programming statistical contact information that fine arts extension agents self-reported.  

Although there were more data, a total of 388 program plans, 147 success stories, and 346 activities were linked and analyzed. Program plans, success stories, and activities that could not be linked were excluded from the analysis. As a result, the research team identified successful programs relevant to creative placemaking and those that can be replicable in other communities nationally. We also found that the Arts Extension programs have diversified in each county over the years along with varied applications of arts programming interests requested by stakeholders. The program as a whole has also crossed counties with the Fine Arts Extension Agents delivering and facilitating programs of their expertise to their colleagues’ audiences. The arts-related Major Area Program (MAP)/ title categories has widened to include various titles from community arts engagement, performance arts, tourism, and economic development to healthy lifestyle choices. Furthermore, we have found that a program that was offered in one county has now become a statewide program. The detailed statistical contact data further elucidated the average number of participants and their demographic characteristics for the different types of Arts Extension program activities throughout the counties.