Motivators for people participating in “culture” in 2017


Pavel Prikhodko, Ph.D. Machine Learning

The United States offers a wide variety of cultural activities — but which of these activities do Americans actually define as “culture?” According to a survey published at, nearly 70 percent defined historic attractions/museums as “culture” in 2017.

Art/design museums were considered a “culture” activity by 63 percent of the respondents. About 62 percent of the people surveyed stated that they viewed community festivals/street fairs as a “culture” activity. The survey also found that 59 percent of people defined music festivals as cultural activities, while natural history museums were also mentioned as “culture” by 57 percent of the respondents.

Public/street art activities were recognized as “culture” by 54 percent, food and drink experience by 52 percent and musical and classical music activities both by 51 percent. Meanwhile, around 51 percent stated that plays (non-musical) and operas also qualify as “culture.” The graph below includes some activities that were also considered “culture” by smaller shares of respondents.


So what are the reasons for cultural participation in the U.S.? Well, the most popular motivator for participants was just having fun, according to 81 percent of the respondents in 2017. Around 78 percent stated that their interest in content was a strong motivator for cultural participation. The survey showed that other strong motivators include experiencing new things (76 percent of the respondents), feeling less stressed (76 percent), learning something new (71 percent), feeling inspired (69 percent) and interacting with others (68 percent).


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About Pavel Prikhodko


Pavel Prikhodko, Ph.D. Machine Learning

Pavel has worked for many years as a researcher and developer on a wide range of applications (varying from mechanics and manufacturing to social data, finance and advertising), building predictive systems and trying to find stories that data can tell.

In his free time, he enjoys being with his family.

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