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1301.0 - Year Book Australia, 2008  
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HERITAGE

Industry and institutions

Museums (including art galleries) engage in the acquisition, collection management, conservation, interpretation, communication and exhibition of heritage objects and artefacts. Heritage objects include those that inform people about natural science, applied science, history, transport, art and other culture. The Collections Australia Network (CAN) website provides access to a database of information on national, state, territory, regional and local museums. CAN includes a searchable database of objects from collecting institutions across Australia.

At the end of June 2004 there were 160 art museum and 1,169 other museum locations operating in Australia (table 14.15). Almost half (49.1%) of the locations were operated without paid employees, relying on the work of 9,382 volunteers. Volunteers were also important to museums operating with employees. The 676 museum locations with paid employees employed a total of 7,624 persons assisted by 11,061 volunteers. The number of museum objects and artworks held by museums at the end of June 2004 was 54.9 mill. However, only 9.7% of these were on display. There were 31.2 mill. admissions to museums during 2003-04. Art museums received income of $324.9m during this time, while other museums received $594.5m. In both cases the main source of income was government funding.

The main activities of libraries are the acquisition, collection, organisation, preservation and loan of library materials such as books, magazines, manuscripts, musical scores, maps and prints. The National Library of Australia (NLA) is the country's largest reference library and its role is to ensure that documentary resources of national significance relating to Australia and the Australian people - as well as significant non-Australian library materials - are collected, preserved and made accessible. The NLA website provides online visitors with access to information about more than 5,400 Australian libraries, their collections and services via the Australian Libraries Gateway. Over 1,500 of these libraries are public, mainly operated by local governments.

The Australian Government Public Lending Right (PLR) scheme makes payments to eligible Australian book creators and publishers on the basis that income is lost as a result of the availability of their books for loan in public lending libraries. Some 8,866 book creators and publishers received PLR payments in 2006-07, totalling $7.1m. Educational Lending Right (ELR) complements PLR and makes payment to eligible Australian book creators and publishers whose books are held in educational lending libraries. An annual survey of the book stock of a representative sample of these libraries (including school, technical and further education, and university libraries) is used to determine payments. In 2006-07, 10,438 book creators and publishers received ELR payments totalling $10.4m. Further information on the two lending right schemes can be obtained from the Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts website.

At the end of June 2004, there were 532 local government library organisations with 1,716 library locations, and eight national and state library organisations with 17 locations (table 14.15). The libraries held 52.8 mill. books and other library materials, of which 39.0 mill. were available as lending stock. Libraries employed 12,471 persons assisted by 6,731 volunteers.

The primary function of archives is the permanent preservation of records which are unique because of their administrative, financial, legal, research, cultural or other information value. The records are generally no longer required for the conduct of current activities by government agencies, non-government organisations or individuals. The National Archives of Australia promotes reliable record keeping and maintains a visible and accessible archival collection on behalf of the Australian Government. The Archives of Australia website provides information about archives in Australia and operates as a portal to the websites of other Australian archival institutions. These include the Australian War Memorial, the National Film and Sound Archive, state and territory government archives, and archives established by churches, business corporations, universities and city councils. At the end of June 2004, there were eight national and state archive organisations with 21 locations employing 811 persons assisted by 122 volunteers (table 14.15).

14.15 MUSEUMS, LIBRARIES AND ARCHIVES - 2003-04

Art museums
Other museums
Local government libraries
National and state libraries
National and state archives

Locations at 30 June no.
^160
1 169
1 716
(a)17
21
Employment at 30 June no.
2 081
5 543
10 606
1 865
811
Volunteers during the month of June no.
^3 125
17 318
6 315
416
122
Income $m
324.9
594.5
545.2
293.7
109.1
Expenses
Labour costs $m
99.1
221.3
340.8
106.9
46.3
Other $m
166.4
323.5
204.4
200.7
60.7
Total $m
265.5
544.8
545.2
307.6
107.0

^ estimate has a relative standard error of 10% to less than 25% and should be used with caution
(a) Excludes storage facilities.
Source: Museums, Australia (8560.0); Public Libraries, Australia (8561.0).

Botanic gardens are scientific and cultural institutions established to collect, study, exchange and display plants for research and for the education and enjoyment of the public. Some have an associated herbarium, which is a scientific collection of dried preserved plant specimens used for research and the accurate classification and identification of plants and plant material. There are major botanic gardens in each capital city. Information about the botanic gardens and herbaria in Australia can be obtained from the websites of the Australian National Botanic Gardens, the Council of Heads of Australian Botanic Gardens, and the Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria.

Zoological parks and aquariums (i.e. animal, fauna, bird and reptile parks, aquariums, aviaries, butterfly houses and dolphinariums) are primarily engaged in the breeding, preservation, study and display of native and/or exotic fauna in captivity, and are accessible to the general public. Some of the better known zoological parks and sanctuaries are Taronga Park (Sydney), Healesville Sanctuary (60 kilometres (km) from Melbourne), the Western Plains Zoo (Dubbo), Victoria's Open Range Zoo at Werribee (just outside Melbourne), The Territory Wildlife Park (Darwin), Monarto Zoological Park (70 km from Adelaide), Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary (Brisbane) and Currumbin Sanctuary (Gold Coast). Information about Australian zoological parks and aquariums can be obtained from the 'Zoos in Australia' page on the Australian Government's Culture and Recreation Portal.


Employment and other involvement

The 2001 Census of Population and Housing provides information on the number and characteristics of people aged 15 years and over whose main job in the week prior to the Census was in a heritage occupation. People who had unpaid involvement in heritage activities - or who worked part time in heritage activities but had another job they regarded as their main job in the week prior to the Census - were not recorded in the Census as having heritage occupations.

The 2001 Census found that, in August 2001, 32,492 people (0.4% of all employed persons) had their main job in a heritage occupation. Of this number, 75.0% were females. Table 14.16 shows the number of people who were recorded as having their main (paid) job in heritage occupations in the 2001 Census.
14.16 PERSONS EMPLOYED IN selected HERITAGE OCCUPATIONS(a) - 2001

Occupation
Males
Females
Persons

Librarian
1 748
8 565
10 313
Library assistant
1 174
7 224
8 398
Library technician
642
5 499
6 141
Environment, parks and land-care manager
1 823
509
2 332
Park ranger
1 255
351
1 606
Museum or gallery attendant
294
570
864
Museum or gallery curator
332
513
845
Archivist
295
502
797
Historian
237
336
573
Conservator
163
241
404
Museum or art gallery technician
145
74
219
Total
8 108
24 384
32 492

(a) For main job.
Source: Employment in Culture, Australia (6273.0).


Heritage work is often intermittent, unpaid or not a person's main job. Therefore, in order to obtain a more complete picture of heritage work, the ABS conducted a household survey in 2004 to measure all involvement over a 12-month period.

During the year ended April 2004, 335,500 people (2.1% of people aged 15 years and over) were involved in some form of paid or unpaid work relating to the heritage activities covered in the survey. The Australian Capital Territory recorded the highest involvement rate for work in heritage activities at 3.9% (table 14.17). The Australian Capital Territory also had the highest proportion of paid involvement, with 56.7% of those involved in heritage activities receiving some payment.

14.17 PERSONS INVOLVED IN HERITAGE ACTIVITIES(a)(b) - 2004

Some paid involvement(c)
Unpaid involvement only
Total persons involved
Persons with no involvement
Total persons
Involvement rate(d)
'000
'000
'000
'000
'000
%

New South Wales
30.5
87.1
117.6
5 154.5
5 272.1
2.2
Victoria
23.0
60.4
83.4
3 842.3
3 925.6
2.1
Queensland
18.8
33.3
52.0
2 931.5
2 983.5
1.7
South Australia
*5.7
19.2
24.9
1 193.2
1 218.1
2.0
Western Australia
*10.1
26.5
36.6
1 504.5
1 541.1
2.4
Tasmania
*1.8
7.1
8.9
368.0
376.9
2.4
Northern Territory(e)
**0.4
*2.0
*2.4
103.4
105.8
*2.2
Australian Capital Territory
5.5
*4.2
9.7
238.3
248.0
3.9
Australia
95.8
239.7
335.5
15 335.7
15 671.1
2.1

* estimate has a relative standard error of 25% to 50% and should be used with caution
** estimate has a relative standard error greater than 50% and is considered too unreliable for general use
(a) Heritage activities comprise work done for heritage organisations, museums and art galleries, libraries and archives, national parks and reserves, zoological parks and aquariums, and botanic gardens.
(b) Excludes persons whose involvement was solely as a hobby for their own use or that of their family.
(c) Includes persons who only received payment in kind.
(d) The number of persons involved in heritage activities, expressed as a percentage of the civilian population in the same group.
(e) Refers to mainly urban areas only.
Source: ABS data available on request, Survey of Work in Selected Culture and Leisure Activities.

The survey found that in the year prior to April 2004, more people had paid involvement in libraries and archives (33,700) and national parks and reserves (27,700) than in the other heritage activities included in the survey. Of the 87,800 people involved in libraries and archives, 38.4% received some payment, while 25.3% of the 113,000 persons involved in national parks and reserves also received some payment.


Government support

In 2005-06 the Australian Government provided $472.2m in funding for heritage, while the state and territory governments contributed $2,142.1m in total (table 14.18). The contribution of local governments to heritage funding is not separately available, although it is known that they provided a total of $973.2m for heritage and the arts during 2005-06. It is also known that local governments provide considerable funding to public libraries. A survey of public libraries, conducted in respect of 2003-04, found the contribution of local governments to be $521.9m.

Funding for heritage and the arts during 2005-06 totalled $1,878.4m from the Australian Government and $2,598.1m from state and territory governments. These figures correspond to the $973.2m provided by local governments. See the earlier Arts section for information regarding government funding of arts activities.

Between 2003-04 and 2005-06, there was a net increase in the funding of heritage activities by both the Australian Government and the combined state and territory governments. Funding by the Australian Government increased by $31.9m (or 7.2%) over the two-year period, while the net increase in funding by state and territory governments was $188.0m (or 9.6%).

14.18 GOVERNMENT FUNDING FOR HERITAGE(a)

2003-04
2004-05
2005-06
$m
$m
$m

Australian
440.3
431.5
472.2
State and territory
1 954.1
1 922.2
2 142.1
Total
2 394.4
2 353.7
2 614.3

(a) Excludes funding by local government.
Source: Cultural Funding by Government, Australia (4183.0).

With funding of $199.6m and $134.1m respectively, museums (other than art museums) and libraries and archives accounted for 70.7% of heritage funding by the Australian Government in 2005-06. However, much of the heritage funding provided by the state and territory governments was directed at nature parks and reserves. The $1,016.3m allocated in this way was 47.4% of the available total (table 14.19).

14.19 GOVERNMENT FUNDING FOR HERITAGE(a), By category of funding - 2005-06

Australian
State and territory
$m
$m

Art museums
54.7
214.0
Other museums
199.6
306.6
Nature parks and reserves
(b)75.2
1 016.3
Zoological parks, aquaria and botanic gardens
8.6
163.6
Libraries and archives
134.1
441.7
Total
472.2
2 142.1

(a) Excludes funding by local government.
(b) This figure has been estimated based on previous year's data and should be used with caution.
Source: Cultural Funding by Government, Australia (4183.0).


A survey of museums, conducted in respect of 2003-04, found that funding from all levels of government contributed $628.0m to the total income of museums. This amount included both current and capital funding, and funding for one-off projects. Art museums received $200.4m of the funding, and other museums the remaining $427.6m. Public libraries were also surveyed in respect of 2003-04. The survey found that libraries and archives received a total of $879.2m from all levels of government. Of this amount, $521.9m went to local government libraries, $259.4m to national and state libraries, and $97.9m to national and state archives. These amounts excluded capital funding.


Experiencing heritage

The ABS periodically conducts a survey of households in which it collects data on several environmental topics, including visits to World Heritage Areas, national and state parks. The most recent survey found that people aged 25-34 years or 35-44 years were the most likely to have visited these areas and parks in the 12 months prior to March 2004. During that period, for both age groups, just over 60% of people visited one of these areas compared with 52% for the adult population as a whole. Graph 14.20 shows visit rates have tended to decline between 1992 and 2004 within each age group. The age group contributing most to the overall fall in the visit rate was the 18-24 year olds. Their visit rate declined from 69% for the 1992 survey to 51% for 2004.


14.20 Visits to world heritage areas, national and state parks
Graph: 14.20 Visits to world heritage areas, national and state parks

Of those people who had not visited a World Heritage Area, national or state park in the 12 months prior to March 2004, 36% cited lack of time as the main reason for this (graph 14.21). Lack of time was the most common main reason for not visiting for all age groups except people aged 65 years and over, for whom age or health conditions was the most common main reason. Inability to visit because of age or health conditions was the second most common main reason for not visiting (17% overall, and 53% for people aged 65 years and over).

14.21 Main reason for not visiting a world heritage area or park(a) - 2004
Graph: 14.21 Main reason for not visiting a world heritage area or park(a)—2004

A household survey conducted in respect of 2005-06 found that 35.6% of the population aged 15 years and over (5.7 million people) visited a zoological park or aquarium, and 33.7% (5.4 million) visited a botanic garden, at least once during the 12 months prior to interview (table 14.22). For art galleries, the attendance rate was 22.7% (3.6 million people), while for museums (other than art galleries) it was 22.6% (3.6 million). Libraries were visited at least once by 34.1% of people aged 15 years and over (5.5 million people).Persons born overseas in the main English-speaking countries had the highest attendance rate at each of these types of institution.

The age group with the highest 2005-06 attendance rates for botanic gardens and for zoological parks and aquariums was 25-34 year olds (37.6% and 46.5% respectively), while for museums it was 35-44 year olds (27.2%) and for libraries 15-24 year olds (37.4%). For art galleries, 45-54 year olds had the highest attendance rate (26.6%).

14.22 ATTENDANCE AT HERITAGE-RELATED INSTITUTIONS(a), Attendance rates(b) - 2005-06

Botanic gardens
Zoological parks
and aquariums
Art galleries
Museums
Libraries(c)
%
%
%
%
%

Males
31.0
33.7
19.9
21.7
26.7
Females
36.3
37.5
25.4
23.4
41.2
Persons
33.7
35.6
22.7
22.6
34.1
Age group (years)
15-24
26.4
37.4
19.2
18.5
37.4
25-34
37.6
46.5
22.5
23.6
32.7
35-44
35.9
46.0
23.4
27.2
37.3
45-54
35.2
32.0
26.6
25.1
33.6
55-64
37.4
31.0
25.8
24.9
30.3
65 and over
29.8
17.5
18.8
15.5
31.9
Birthplace
Australia
32.8
36.2
23.4
22.7
33.4
Main English-speaking countries
41.1
41.1
29.4
28.9
42.1
Other countries
32.5
29.6
15.6
18.2
31.8

(a) Attendance at least once in the 12 months prior to interview in 2005-06.
(b) An attendance rate is the number of people who attended, expressed as a percentage of the number of people in that population group.
(c) National, state or local government libraries only.
Source: Attendance at Selected Cultural Venues and Events, Australia (4114.0).


A survey of public libraries and archives in respect of 2003-04 found that there were 104.7 mill. visits to libraries during that year - an average of just over five visits per person. Local government libraries accounted for 95% of all visits. There were also 137,000 visits to the search rooms of the national and state archive organisations during 2003-04, and 218,000 recorded archival enquiries.

It is important to note the difference between a 'visitor' and a 'visit'. The 2005-06 household survey mentioned above counted each visitor only once, regardless of how many times they visited a library. However, the survey of public libraries and archives recorded the total number of visits, so that each visitor was counted every time they visited a library.

In April 2006 the ABS conducted a survey of children's participation in cultural and leisure activities. For the first time, this survey collected information about children's attendance at cultural venues. Almost two-thirds (65.8%) of children aged 5-14 years (1.8 million children) had attended a public library, museum or art gallery outside school hours in the previous 12 months. Public libraries were visited by 55.1% of children, which was substantially more than the 37.3% who visited museums or art galleries (table 14.23).

Regular surveys of household expenditure are conducted by the ABS, most recently in respect of 2003-04. Findings from this survey showed households spent, on average, $0.39 per week on heritage activities - $0.15 on art gallery and museum fees and charges and $0.24 on national park and zoo fees and charges. This results in total annual expenditure on heritage activities by all households of $157.3m, which is less than 0.1% of the total annual household expenditure on all products. However, it should be noted that general entry to many art galleries and museums is free, with fees only being charged for special exhibitions.

14.23 CHILDREN'S ATTENDANCE AT HERITAGE-RELATED INSTITUTIONS(a), Attendance rates(b) - 2006

Visited public library
Visited museum or art gallery
%
%

Males
52.8
38.2
Females
57.5
36.4
Age group (years)
5-8
53.5
40.4
9-11
57.3
39.5
12-14
54.8
31.4
Birthplace(c)
Australia
54.6
37.5
Main English-speaking countries
61.6
48.1
Other countries
59.8
26.0
All children
55.1
37.3

(a) Attendance at least once outside of school hours in the 12 months prior to interview in April 2006.
(b) An attendance rate is the number of people who attended, expressed as a percentage of the number of people in that population group.
(c) Excludes children whose country of birth was inadequately described.
Source: Children's Participation in Cultural and Leisure Activities, Australia (4901.0) and ABS data available on request, Survey of Children's Participation in Cultural and Leisure Activities.





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