Third-Party Investigation Commissioned by Disney is Finished, and the Results Are Staggering

disney world parks walt disney
Credit: Disney Parks/Walt Disney Archives/Canva

A third-party investigation into the multi-faceted operations at the Walt Disney World Resort has finally concluded, and the findings are staggering.

Cinderella castle with bright sun overhead

Credit: Disney/Canva

On Tuesday morning, The Walt Disney Company released the findings from an investigation that took a deep dive into its impact in the state of Florida as the company continues to be at odds with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and the Florida State legislature over the state’s decision to take over the governing district for the resort, which was initially set up by Walt Disney and his brother Roy O. Disney in the 1960s.

walt disney and roy disney with florida governor

Credit: Walt Disney Archives

The findings, as compiled in a report by Oxford Economics–the entity responsible for carrying out an economic impact study related to Disney’s presence in the Sunshine State–are impressive, to say the least.

According to the report from Oxford Economics, which covered the company’s fiscal year 2022, Disney’s economic impact in Florida is $40.3 billion, and the Central Florida Disney Parks resort accounted for 263,000 jobs in the state. That’s more than three times the size of the actual workforce at the Walt Disney World Resort. While the investigation into Disney’s impact on the Florida economy attributed much of the resort’s impact to direct employment and spending, it also attributed it to indirect influences, which include supply chain and employees’ spending.

epcot's world showcase lagoon

World Showcase Lagoon at EPCOT/Credit: Becky Burkett

Jobs generated by Disney’s presence in the Sunshine State include Disney employees, as well as positions that were supported by guests’ spending that took place outside of Disney World’s property. Per the report, Disney directly accounts for 12.5% of the jobs in Central Florida or one in every eight jobs in the region. For every direct job at the resort, another 1.7 jobs are supported in the state of Florida.

The Oxford report also revealed the impact Disney World has on tax revenue in the state, as shared by Scott Gustin with Nexstar Media:

“The Oxford study, which was commissioned by Disney, also revealed Disney is responsible for $6.6 billion in tax revenue, including $3.1 billion in annual state and local tax revenue generated by Disney, visitors, employees, and third-party businesses,” Gustin reported in a post on X.

Oxford Economics’ study took place before the State of Florida took over Disney’s governing district, called the Reedy Creek Improvement District. In early 2023, the Florida State Legislature and Gov. Ron DeSantis took the necessary steps to keep the district intact while renaming it and giving the governor the sole executive authority to appoint members of his choosing to the board. Renamed the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District, the entity still serves as the governing body for Disney’s property in Orange and Osceola Counties.
New Details Shared on Highly Anticipated Experiences Coming to Walt Disney World Resort | Disney Parks Blog

The Walt Disney World Resort/Credit: Disney Parks

The Walt Disney World Resort includes four unique theme parks–Magic Kingdom Park, EPCOT, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom, as well as two water parks–Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach, more than 25 themed Disney resort hotels, and a shopping, dining, and entertainment district known as Disney Springs–all on more than 25,000 acres (much of it yet undeveloped) just outside of the city of Orlando.

About Becky Burkett

Becky's from the Lone Star State and has been writing since she was 10 and encountered her first Disney Park when she was 11. It was love at first Main Street Electrical Parade. Joy is blank lined journals, 0.7 mm pens, and all things Walt, Woody and Buzz, PIXAR, Imagineering, Sleeping Beauty (make it blue!), Disney Parks history and EPCOT. At Disney World, you'll find her croonin' with the birdies at the Enchanted Tiki Room or hangin' with Woody and the gang at Toy Story Land. If you can dream, you really can do it!


  1. Yeah, they may employ plenty of people, but that doesn’t give them the right to push around everyone else. Business and politics don’t mix.

  2. Thank goodness, Bob, that there’s someone besides me who thinks the Supreme Court’s Citizens United ruling that allows corporations to spend unlimited money on elections is a bad idea!

  3. i always thought that businesses that make a profit, and employ people, are good for the economy, good for the state. When the state interferes with businesses, with power concentrated in one individual that is part of the state and not part of the business, that is just not a great idea.