Cultural occupation in a field of tension between private and public cultural activities
All empirical findings from various sources show that the number of free-lance artists, writers and people in publicity professions have markedly increased in the last ten to fifteen years. Similarly, studios, ateliers and enterprises in the so-called small cultural economy have achieved substantial increases in terms of occupational and economic effects.
Recent studies in Germany have given strong evidence of these trends - however, they also indicate that there are a series of structural changes which raise a number of questions: Is culture promoted by the public sector a requirement for the cultural economy or is the opposite true? Are these complementary or competitive sectors? Can employment in the field of culture be regarded as a model for modern employment markets? Which factors indicate that cultural economy is a sector with future prospects? Are artists already regarded as the "creative core" of culture and media business?
This contribution offers current, empirical data and statements in regard of the employment situation in the cultural sector in Germany.
Michael Soendermann is a social scientist/statistician, cultural educator and musician. In addition to working for the German district assembly (Bonn) and for the Centre of Culture Research (Bonn) he now heads the Research Office of Cultural Statistics where he is in charge of empirical statistical research, documentation and analyses in the fields of cultural politics, cultural professions, cultural employment market and cultural economics. He is head of the Working Group on Cultural Statistics (ARKStat) in the House of Culture in Bonn. Since 1992 he has published three cultural economic reports for the Ministry of Economy of the state of North-Rhine Westphalia. Until 1994 he worked as a counsellor for the Federal Ministry "Data for cultural education", in 1995 he carried out an international comparative study on cultural financing in six federalist states, since 1996 he is counselling the Saxon Art Ministry on "Setting up a joint data base on cultural statistics" for the governmental, regional and communal authorities in Saxony.
His research currently focuses on:
Empirical structural analyses on the employment and occupation market, on the culture and media economy and on artistic and cultural professions.
Analysis and prognosis of public cultural funding in Germany at the federal, state and community level.
Systematic work on adjusting various cultural statistics in terms of regional, national and international demarcations.
Conception and set-up of a cultural information server: "http://www.kulturpolitik.de" in German-language association with Austria and Switzerland.
Development and establishment of data bases for culture, cultural economy and cultural occupation.
D - 50939 Koeln
Tel: ++49 (0)221/461464
ARKStat im Haus der Kultur
D - 53113 Bonn
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