4147.4.55.001 - Culture and Recreation News, Mar 2014  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 28/03/2014  Final
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Sport has been at the forefront over the past few months or so with the Sochi Winter Olympic and Winter Paralympic Games being held in February and March. Closer to home the national football and netball competitions are well underway while arts and culture have been active through such events as the Adelaide Festival, a host of exhibitions nationwide and numerous stage shows and touring artists.

For our part the past six months has seen the National Centre for Culture and Recreation Statistics (NCCRS) release several publications. Among these was the latest issue of Perspectives on Sport, Nov 2013 (cat. no. 4156.0.55.001) which was released on 25 November 2013. Perspectives on Sport is a series of short articles on topics of interest that relate to sport and physical recreation and use data sourced from a range of ABS surveys. In addition, we released the Value of Sport, Australia, 2013 (cat. no. 4156.0.55.002) on 24 October 2013, a compilation of economic data about sport and physical recreation collected by the ABS.

On the arts and culture front we have released the first Australian National Accounts: Cultural and Creative Activity Satellite Accounts, Experimental, 2008-09 (cat. no. 5271.0). This publication, released on 10 February 2014, was developed in response to strong user interest and was informed by public consultation as described in the ABS' Discussion Paper: Cultural and Creative Activity Satellite Accounts, Australia, 2013 (cat. no. 5271.0.55.001) and Information Paper: Cultural and Creative Activity Satellite Accounts, Australia, 2013 (cat. no. 5271.0.55.002). It is one of the few cultural and creative activity satellite accounts in the world and allows users to gain a picture of the value of this sector and how interacts with the rest of the economy.

The most recent Cultural Funding by Government, Australia, 2011-12 (cat. no. 4183.0) was released on 1 August 2013. This survey provides details about expenditure on arts and cultural heritage at all levels of government. We would like to thank those in federal, state and territory agencies for their time and effort completing the 2011-12 survey. Updates to Employment in Culture were released on 14 February 2014. For this iteration they were released in Arts and Culture: State and Territory Profiles, 2012 (4920.0). Employment in Culture presents summary data on selected cultural occupations and industries from the 2011 Census of Population and Housing (Census) for all states and territories of Australia. The profiles also contain information about children's participation in cultural and leisure activities, cultural participation (adult), and cultural funding by government.

The ABS recently participated in the UNESCO Pilot Survey in Cultural Employment Statistics. This survey marks the first step towards the creation of new indicators to measure the contribution of culture to economic and social development, and the conditions of those employed in the cultural sector. Australia is one of 20 countries invited to participate in the pilot survey. The purpose of the pilot survey is to test and assess the data collection instrument, the availability of data, as well as the data collection process and response burden on countries.

The ABS is also undertaking a data pooling project relating to Adult Participation in Sport and Physical Recreation. The project will utilise the ongoing ABS Multi-Purpose Household Survey and combine data from the 2005-06, 2009-10 and 2011-12 datasets. This will create a single dataset which will be larger than any one collection and enable finer detailed analysis thus helping federal and state government agencies to plan, deliver and evaluate sport and physical recreation programs more effectively.

As always, I hope you find this newsletter both informative and interesting. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions about the work of the NCCRS please feel free to contact us.

Andrew Middleton