Kelly Ernst/
Strategic Designer
Field Engagements:

Instances of field engagement
through thought leadership,
speaking opportunities, and research

Governors Business Forum ︎︎︎

Diversifying the Creative Economy | Panelist
During the statewide gathering of the Wyoming Business Alliance, advocacy groups for business across the state grapple with how to diversify the creative economy.  Diversifying the Creative Economy with Wyoming Arts Alliance discusses the value of the arts in helping to build a livable community and the creative economy’s drive of the workforce outside of the arts. The arts contribute to the economy but also make places livable in more than just one way.

Music Policy Forum ︎︎︎ 

Music Cities Together, Music Economy Recovery
October, 2020
Music Cities Together host conversations with public officials, music workers, researchers and other stakeholders to share strategies, best practices and perspectives about music cities in a time of unprecedented crisis. Kelly Ernst joins to discuss data analysis in cultural policy making and economic recovery for the arts and music sectors, and their findings with the Creative Vitality List Top 10 data projects.

Vectors of a Creative Economy ︎︎︎ 

Vector-Actor Network of the Creative and Knowledge Economy
October, 2021
The knowledge economy now has a relationship with the creative economy in which creativity is understood as an essential attribute in the creation of surplus value. This unprecedented relationship has defined an economic commodification of creativity wherein the creative component production becomes the essential product, existing solely in a information vector value network. Vectors of a Creative Economy explores the vector-actor network scoring the knowledge economy and its relationship to creative production and consumer components.

Creative Economy and Recovery: Case Studies of Arts-Led Recovery and Resilience ︎︎︎

National Assembly for State Arts Agencies
February, 2021
Salient themes from a suite of case studies conducted by the Western States Arts Federation illustrating how the arts have contributed to economic turnarounds in distressed communities Case Studies of Arts-Led Economic Recovery and Resilience offer complete case studies and economic data compiled through Creative Vitality Suite™, this report examines communities in Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nebraska, Tennessee, Vermont, Washington and West Virginia, revealing how the arts are a springboard for local economic growth

The Civic Canopy

Member, Board of Directors
July, 2021- Present
Communities have been facing challenges like hunger, poverty, chronic illness, and racial inequity for too long. To build thriving communities, it is time to try something different. The Civic Canopy is a non-profit organization that transforms the way pivotal issues in our society are addressed through design strategy. The Canopy connects diverse groups of people seeking change in their communities and equips them with the tools to create a meaningful and lasting impact building a a network of social impact through design innovation.

Creative Industries Summit 

Measuring the Creative Economy: Data Methods and Sources 

-Generating Momentum: Using demographic & economic data to tell
your unique story

August 2021

The Creative Industries Summit is the annual event for Colorado creatives to connect, learn, and be inspired. More than 300 creative stakeholders from over 60 Colorado cities and towns attend the summit.

The two-day event offers exhibits, performances, networking opportunities, speakers, classes, and workshops  for both early- and late-career creative leaders including artists, board members, community leaders, creative entrepreneurs, creative industries advocates from all sectors, elected officials, emerging creatives, executive directors, municipal and nonprofit cultural workers, and program staff.

Creative Forces: Community Engagement Network ︎︎︎

Mid-America Arts Alliance
Creative Forces: Community Engagement Grant Panelist
March, 2022
The Creative Forces Community Engagement Grant program is part of the National Endowment for the Arts’ Creative Forces initiative and managed in partnership with Mid-America Arts Alliance (M-AAA). This grant program aims to improve the health, well-being, and quality of life for military and veteran populations exposed to trauma, as well as their families and caregivers through grants to support emerging and established non-clinical arts engagement projects.

Washington State Creative Economy Strategic Plan ︎︎︎

Washington Departement of Commerce Washington Senate Bill 5238
Design research, Manager

January 2022 - December 2023 

View the report

Washingtons creative economy, which centers around the monetization of creative activities and ideas, represents a rapidly growing and changing sector for job creation and revenue generation in Washington State. The state seeks to fully understand the business case in terms of what it will take to maintain and grow a creative economy and its clusters from a legislative and financial perspective.

Through this project, the state seeks to answer several key questions surrounding the creative economy, including:

  • What constitutes the framework of the state’s creative economy?
  • What is the current employment and demographic profile of the creative economy?
  • What opportunities exist to grow the creative economy, particularly in rural and underserved communities?
  • What specific occupations or industries are the most growth oriented?
  • What economic conditions foster or hinder growth of the creative sector and the creative economy at large?
  • What roadblocks exist that hinder the creative economy and what steps can be taken to support its growth in terms of jobs creation and growth?

Parsons School of Design︎︎︎

School of Design Strategies;  Strategic Design and Management BBA

Adjuct Faculty Member,  Social Impact Venture Design 

Course Description:
The design of social impact focuses on the viability of a social impact venture. We follow an iterative stakeholder validation method to address a systemic social inequity and/or environmental challenge through the creation of a new organization.

We augment this structure with exercises, experiments, and self-inquiry to build strong teams, and to strengthen the students’ connection to networks and communities. Most student learning happens outside of the classroom through customer discovery inquiry and experiments. Within the classroom, students build an understanding of the interrelationships between key community stakeholders, potential economic buyers, funders, and resource holders.

Within the frame of social impact, students learn how to sequence their narrative to address the near-term practicality of launching a venture with the long-range design of future goals that have the capacity to shift resources and opportunities for better human and environmental outcomes.

instances of 
 existence on the internet / email / instagram / linkedin