Humanities Indicators
Facebook Twitter YouTube
Funding & Research  >  Not-for-Profit Humanities Organizations
Not-for-Profit Cultural and Ethnic Awareness Organizations and Their Revenues

Cultural and ethnic awareness organizations are among the more difficult to classify, but for the purposes of the Humanities Indicators this category includes organizations dedicated to the study, preservation, and/or dissemination of the history and culture of ethnic groups, while excluding organizations whose primary mission is the social or economic advancement of these groups. Libraries and museums with an ethnic focus are included among organizations analyzed in those categories. Drawing on tax records extending back to the 1980s, the following indicator tracks the number and revenues of larger not-for-profit cultural and ethnic awareness organizations; that is, those with gross receipts of $50,000 or more (and thus required to submit the federal tax forms that are source of the data underlying this indicator).

Findings and Trends

  • The numbers and revenues of not-for-profit cultural and ethnic awareness organizations have increased in every year studied from 1989 to 2012, growing from 362 organizations with revenues of $253 million (in inflation-adjusted dollars) to a total of 1,444 organizations with $681.6 million (Indicator IV-9g). Median revenues for organizations in this category were $127,921.
  • The median age (as measured by the number of years since an organization received federal tax-exempt status) of cultural and ethnic awareness organizations in 2012 was 15 years—substantially younger than the median of 25 years for all not-for-profit humanities organization types considered together.
IV-9g: Numbers and Revenues of Not-for-Profit (NFP) Cultural and Ethnic Awareness Organizations, 1989–2012* (Adjusted for Inflation)

* Organizations whose gross receipts were $50,000 or more. Years are “circa” years, a concept developed by the collector of these data to compensate for the often substantial lag between the end of organizations’ fiscal year and their filing of IRS Form 990, the annual financial report required of all public charities—and the source of the data presented in this indicator. For more on circa years and the rationale for excluding organizations with gross receipts of less than $50,000, see “About the Data.”

** Number of years since recognized as “nonprofit” by the federal government.

Source: Original analysis by the Humanities Indicators of data culled from the Internal Revenue Service Form 990 Return Transaction Files by the Urban Institute’s National Center for Charitable Statistics. Revenues were adjusted for inflation using the Gross Domestic Product Implicit Price Deflators produced by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis (annual deflators, vintage 3/27/2015;, accessed 4/6/2015).

About this DataRelated Indicators