4172.0 - Arts and Culture in Australia: A Statistical Overview, 2008 (Second Edition)  
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The Census of Population and Housing

The 2006 Census of Population and Housing collected information on a person’s main job (the one in which they usually worked the most hours) in the week before the Census. A range of demographic information including sex, age, birthplace, income, hours worked and state or territory of usual residence as well as details on occupation and industry are available from the Census. While this chapter provides some data from the Census on cultural employment, it is by no means exhaustive and substantially more can be found in the ABS publication Employment in Culture, Australia, 2006 (cat. no. 6273.0).

For the 2006 Census, occupation and industry data were dual coded. This gives users the option to use either Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (First Edition, 2006) (ANZSCO) (cat. no. 1220.0) or Australian Standard Classification of Occupations (Second Edition, 1997) (ASCO) (cat. no. 1220.0) when analysing occupation data. Users can also choose between Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification 1993 (ANZSIC) (cat. no. 1292.0) or ANZSIC 2006 (Revision 1.0) when analysing industry data. This is why the figures in table 5.1 for employment in cultural industries differ to table 5.2. Unless comparing data over time, the 2006 occupation figures using ANZSCO and the 2006 industry figures using ANZSIC 2006 should be reported.

The list of cultural occupations shown in this chapter is based on the Occupation Classification of the Australian Culture and Leisure Classifications 2008 (Second Edition) (ACLC) (cat. no. 4902.0). Occupations were selected because they require creative participation (e.g. Sculptors and Actors), or have a role in enabling others to participate in a cultural activity (e.g. Librarians).

Survey of Work in Selected Culture and Leisure Activities

The survey of Work in Selected Culture and Leisure Activities has been collected as a supplement to the monthly Labour Force Survey since 1993. There has been slight changes in methodology during this time. Unlike the Census, the surveys covered all cultural work including second jobs and both paid and unpaid involvement. The surveys asked people aged 15 years and over about their involvement in cultural activities over a 12-month period. Data from the 2007 survey appears in Work in Selected Culture and Leisure Activities, Australia, April 2007 (cat. no. 6281.0).

Voluntary Work Survey

The 2006 Voluntary Work Survey collected information about volunteering for a range of organisations, including those relating to arts and heritage. The demographic details of volunteers, their reasons for volunteering and the frequency and duration of their involvement were all collected. Summary results from the 2006 survey are published in Voluntary Work, Australia, 2006 (cat. no. 4441.0).

Service Industry Surveys

Different surveys collect information about different populations. The Census, Work in Selected Culture and Leisure Activities and Voluntary Work Survey obtain their data from households whereas the Service Industry Surveys collect information from cultural organisations. These organisations are able to provide information on the number of people they employ and the number of volunteers whose services they use.

Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours

The May 2006 Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours provides information on the composition and distribution of the earnings and hours of wage and salary earners. Data from this survey have been published in Employee Earnings and Hours, Australia, May 2006 (cat. no. 6306.0).

Choosing a Data Source

Each data source provides a different perspective on employment or voluntary work in the cultural sector. Which source to use is dependent on what one is trying to measure. For example, if seeking a regional breakdown (below state or territory level) or a fine level of detail on the occupation of a person working in a cultural industry, the Census is the most appropriate data source however, it only refers to a person's main job in the week prior to Census Night. If information on the total number of people involved in culture is required and detailed data on the characteristics of those involved is less important, then the 'Work in Culture' Survey data would be the most useful. If trying to compare the number of people who volunteer to work in heritage and arts organisations, with those offering their services elsewhere, the Voluntary Work Survey should be used.

The Service Industry Surveys are the most appropriate source if details on the number of people working in selected industries are required. Unlike the Census, these surveys include people working in the industries in second jobs or in an unpaid capacity. However, many of the Service Industry Surveys cited in this publication only collected information from employing organisations, therefore those organisations which rely solely on the services of volunteers were excluded. Recent changes in coverage have occurred in the 2003-04 Museums and Public Libraries Surveys and the 2006-07 Performing Arts and Television, Film and Video Production and Post-production Services Surveys. These surveys now include employing and non-employing organisations.

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