This monograph, part of a series presenting the work of the Urban Institute’s Arts and Culture Indicators Project (ACIP), discusses three major advances in the Institute's ongoing work. First, a definition of cultural vitality is introduced, which includes the range of cultural assets and activity people around the country register as significant. Specifically, cultural vitality is defined as evidence of creating, disseminating, validating, and supporting arts and culture as a dimension of everyday life in communities. Second, this definition is used as a lens through which to clarify an understanding of the data necessary, as well as the more limited data currently available, to document adequately and include arts and culture in more general quality of life indicators. Third, an initial set of arts and culture indicators derived from nationally available data are developed and recommended, and selected metropolitan statistical areas are compare based on the measures developed.