Steven R. Nivin, Ph.D.

Steven R. Nivin, Ph.D., LLC is an economic consulting firm based in San Antonio, Texas. The firm focuses on economic research related to regional economic growth and development. Steve has special expertise in the role of arts and culture in economic development; transit-oriented development; neighborhood and community development; hospitality, tourism, and sporting event impacts; policy and program analysis; and economic forecasting. The firm has completed numerous market analyses, economic forecasts, economic development plans, economic and fiscal impact analyses, and cost-benefit studies for both private and public sector clients.

The firm is led by Steve Nivin, a researcher with more than twenty years of experience. Steve is a recognized expert, frequently asked to speak publicly, consult with the media and advise organizations. With his collaborators, Steve is pioneering methodologies to better understand how arts and culture affects economic development, as well as the use of complexity analysis to gain a more in-depth understanding of the structure and functioning of regional economies.

Steve is also an associate professor of economics at St. Mary’s University and an adjunct professor at the Southwest School of Art where he teaches economics in their bachelor of fine arts program. He also founded the SABER Institute, a collaborative think tank of St. Mary’s University and the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and still serves as director of the Institute.

Steve’s relationship with The Cultural Planning Group (CPG) began in 2005 when he worked closely with CPG to develop economic development strategies for the cultural plan for the City of San Antonio, called The Cultural Collaborative. This was the first cultural plan in the country to include economic development strategies, especially as they relate to for-profit arts and cultural organizations. Steve’s portfolio with CPG grew to include projects in Santa Monica, California; Broward County, Florida; Indian River County, Florida; and Scottsdale, Arizona. Dr. Nivin has also collaborated with David Plettner-Saunders to publish an article in The IEDC Economic Development Journal. Together with CPG, he is planning a pilot project to understand for the first time the impacts of public art on multiple aspects of economic development.

Additionally, Steve has conducted several studies in San Antonio on the economic impacts of arts and cultural organizations and events, including regular updates on the city’s creative industry. He is often asked to give speeches and interviews on a range of economic issues, especially on the economics of arts and culture in the region.