Edited by Ruth Towse
Chapter 23: Cultural Statistics
David Throsby Statistics covering the volume and value of cultural output, levels of employment, cultural consumption and participation, public and private funding and so on are required for purposes such as: ● ● ● ● describing the size of the cultural sector, its place in the economy and society, and the nature and extent of its functioning; underpinning evidence-based policy formation, which depends both on raw data and on relevant analysis of those data; monitoring and evaluation of the success or otherwise of cultural policies and programmes while they are being implemented or after they have been completed; and comparing various items of data using intra- or internationally comparable statistics to assist, for example, in the benchmarking of performance standards. Cultural statistics that are useful for these purposes can be derived from three sources. First, official government statistical agencies routinely gather and publish data on the economy and society and are a major source of information about the arts and culture. The data they provide may occur as a subset of more general statistical collections such as censuses, national accounts or workforce surveys, or they may be put together specifically for the arts and culture sector, perhaps by specialized units devoted to cultural statistics. Second, a number of independent bodies collect data of various sorts that may be relevant for policy purposes; for example, cultural observatories, university research institutes and private consultants carry out surveys, while industry bodies and NGOs gather data from their members. Third, a number of international organizations publish data of...
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