7. Measurement of the culture sector

In general, basic measurement of the culture sector will quantify all culture activity and culture product in each culture domain across the creative chain, including the transversal domains, as well as the occupations that produce them. In summary, the domains for basic measurement are described as follows:

Core culture sub-domains produce goods and services that are the result of creative artistic activity and whose main purpose is the transmission of an intellectual or cultural concept.

Ancillary culture sub-domains produce goods and services that are the result of creative artistic activity (e.g. designs, architectural plans), but their primary purpose is not the transmission of an intellectual or cultural concept.

Transversal domains produce goods and services that support all core and ancillary culture sub-domains. These crosscutting domains are Education and Training, and Governance, Funding and Professional Support.

Culture researchers measure culture from a variety of perspectives. For instance, much research is carried out from an industry perspective – looking at the performance of specific culture industries, such as book publishing. This might also include looking at the work force of that industry (both culture and non-culture occupations). Another perspective is the product approach where research focuses on measuring the total supply and demand of culture products, including both production and import. A third important perspective is related to the labour force and focuses on culture occupations and culture workers. This perspective is not limited to culture industries, as it would also examine unemployed culture workers and those who work in non-culture industries. For example, culture labour force analysis might examine the activities and outcomes for all graphic designers (working or not, in any industry).

The domain-approach of the Canadian Framework for Culture Statistics (CFCS) supports all of these approaches. For most purposes, the framework recommends that the basic measurement of the culture sector include all core and ancillary sub-domains as well as the transversal domains (as described in Figure 6).

Figure 6 Measuring the culture sectorFigure 6 Measuring the culture sector

While not included in the basic measurement of the culture sector, depending upon analytical requirements, infrastructure domains may be included in the measurement of culture.

Infrastructure domains consist of groupings of goods and services that support the use and consumption of culture content. They are not part of the basic definition of culture but provide supports for its production and use (e.g.Mediating Products and Physical Infrastructure).

Guidelines and the specifics of measuring culture are discussed in a companion publication, the Classification Guide for the Canadian Framework for Culture Statistics 2011 (Statistics Canada 2011).

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