2.5 Million People Reached with Message to Choose Artisan

November 9, 2015

Contact: Gina Rogari
Program Associate
Alliance for Artisan Enterprise
202-7367-3519 | gina.rogari@aspeninst.org


2.5 Million People Reached with Message to Choose Artisan
The Aspen Institute’s Alliance for Artisan Enterprise raises awareness about the $32B global artisan economy

Washington, DC, November 9, 2015 Last Friday, the Alliance for Artisan Enterprise engaged over 2.5 million people with messages supporting the global artisan sector. The Alliance, part of the Aspen Institute’s Global Health and Development program, is a network of over 70 artisan businesses, support organizations, and other partners including the US Department of State, Coca Cola, and Kiva, that work together to promote the power and potential of artisan enterprise around the world. 

#ChooseArtisan Thunderclap
The Alliance for Artisan Enterprise is spreading awareness about the economic and social value of handcrafted goods in its Global Campaign for Artisan Enterprise. The campaign began with the #ChooseArtisan Thunderclap, a social media “flash mob” that provided a platform for 585 supporters to share messages on Twitter and Facebook about why they support the artisan sector. Thunderclap supporters included Acumen founder Jacqueline Novogratz, Root Capital, and chef José Andrés; on November 6, 2015, messages reached over 2.5 million people. 

“The Global Campaign is an opportunity to shine a bright light on talented artisans and entrepreneurs all over the world,” said Peggy Clark, vice president of policy programs at the Aspen Institute and director of the Alliance for Artisan Enterprise. “Most people still do not understand the full economic value of the artisan sector.” 

Global Campaign for Artisan Enterprise
The global market for handcrafted goods is worth over $32 billion every year. Two-thirds of handicrafts are produced in developing countries, mainly by women. Still, artisan enterprises are rarely understood as drivers of economic growth or contributors to sustainable livelihoods.

The Alliance for Artisan Enterprise launched the Global Campaign for Artisan Enterprise to challenge this misunderstanding. In partnership with the US Department of State’s Office of Global Women’s Issues, the Alliance hosted Artisan Enterprise: The New Startup Economy in September, a forum featuring thought leaders, artisans, business executives, and Secretary of State John Kerry.

“If you’re looking for innovative ways to help developing countries in order to flourish,” Secretary Kerry remarked, “artisans are a terrific place to begin.”

The #ChooseArtisan movement continues on the Alliance for Artisan Enterprise Social Wall, a real-time interactive hub for artisans and supporters. The Social Wall compiles posts using the #ChooseArtisan hashtag and exhibits the extraordinary diversity and reach of artisan craft. The Global Campaign for Artisan Enterprise is just beginning – organizations, individuals, multilaterals, and policymakers are encouraged to get involved in the movement to promote the power and potential of this sector.

Use the #ChooseArtisan hashtag on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to contribute to the campaign’s Social Wall. Learn more about the Alliance for Artisan Enterprise and learn how to get involved on the program’s website. Please contact Gina Rogari for more information. 

The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to foster leadership based on enduring values and to provide a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The Institute is based in Washington, DC; Aspen, Colorado; and on the Wye River on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. It also has offices in New York City and an international network of partners. For more information, visit www.aspeninstitute.org.


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