Irish Times Article

Arts Council’s own independent economic survey here:


Department Arts, Sport Tourism. Independent DKM Economic Consultants survey

Economic Impact of the Cultural Sector
4th September 2009

Please read this, the read “Time to Act”

Contribution to GNP & Employment
• The cultural and creative sectors are a major sector of the economy, in terms of both output and of employment.
• Taking into account economic multipliers, the Value Added dependent on the cultural and creative sectors in 2008 was
€11.8 billion or 7.6% of total GNP.
• Employment dependent on the cultural and creative sectors combined in 2008 was 170,000 or 8.7% of total employment in
the economy.

Culture-Related Tourism
• Cultural tourism is a key element of Ireland’s tourism industry. The list of top visitor attractions is dominated by natural and
built heritage, and in addition, festivals, musical and other events attract major numbers of attendees.
• Some 3.53 million overseas visitors engaged in cultural/historical visits while in Ireland in 2008, 43% of total visitors.
• These visitors spent €2.3 billion in Ireland, 56% of total overseas visitor spend in Ireland.
• Thus tourists who engage in cultural pursuits while in Ireland are higher than average spenders.
• A total of €3.03 billion, or 2% of GNP is at least partly dependent on overseas cultural tourism. Domestic cultural tourism would add significantly to this.
• A total of 73,000 jobs are dependent on cultural tourism, 3.4% of the total workforce.
• There is a very significant showcase impact from Irish culture, which raises the profile of the country and has a substantial
economic benefit, most directly on tourism.

Regional Aspects of the Cultural Sector
• There is a strong regional aspect to the cultural sector, as cultural activity is strongly rooted in locality. Remoteness from
larger metropolitan areas is less of a disadvantage than in some other sectors, and in some cases is an enhancing factor.
• This is most obvious in the area of events and festivals and in the related cultural tourism.
• Examination of the most popular visitor attractions and events in Ireland in recent years point to a range of locations around the country, in particular along the western seaboard.

Exchequer Impacts of the Sector
• Total Exchequer expenditure on the cultural sector in 2008 was €330 million.
• Against this, direct Exchequer revenue from the cultural and creative sectors in 2008 was approximately €1 billion. Taking into account the economic multiplier effects the figure rises to €4.1 billion.
• In addition, cultural tourism directly generates direct revenue of €0.3 billion, which when the multiplier effects are included rise to €1.1 billion.
• Expenditure by the Irish Exchequer on the cultural sector is less than the average for European countries, and as a percentage of GDP/GNP is the fourth lowest among a range of western European countries.

The Cultural Sector and the Smart Economy
• The European commission has ranked Ireland 13th out of 29 European countries in terms of turnover in creative industries.
• The growth rate of the Creative sector in Ireland has been well above the European average, indicating the importance of
Creative Industries for overall Irish economic performance.
• The new enterprise model for the Irish economy – articulated in Building Ireland’s Smart Economy – recognises the vital
importance of the cultural and creative sectors, and places strong emphasis on creativity, the accumulation of knowledge,
and the development of ideas and designs as well as the application of technology.
Future Prospects for the Sector
• The cultural & creative sector is globally one of the fastest growing, representing 7% of global GDP and growing at 10% per annum.
• Likewise, cultural tourism is expected to experience growth of 15% per annum going forward.
• This compares with expected growth in the overall economy in the next decade of 4.3%; growth in the culture-related sectors is expected to be two to three times the average for the overall economy.
• Thus the culture-related sectors will be one of the key growth areas, which Ireland must tap into for economic and employment opportunities over the next decade, it is to recover from the current severe recession.
• Furthermore, on a global scale the culture-related sectors are expected to be a significantly greater part of the international economy in the future, and Ireland must make its presence felt in these sectors if the overall economy is to be competitive leader in the future.
• Future Government decisions regarding funding of the sector need to be taken with this context in mind.

Please now read Time to Act

Time to Act

Decision time is coming with regard to budget decisions at Council and Government Level.

Now is the time for all members to to take the time to email or write to our representatives in support of the arts.

Our councillors are here:

And our TDs (and prospective TD) are here:

Joe Costello TD (Lab)
Cyprian Brady TD (FF)
Bertie Ahern TD (FF)
Maureen O’Sullivan TD (Ind)
Sen Pascal Donoghue (FG)

When writing to councillors the agreed campaign goals are:

Keep the position of Arts Officer after the retirement of Jack Gilligan.
Keep the current level of Arts Disbursement of €625,000

When writing to TDs the agreed campaign goals are:

Retain the Film Board at at least its current funding.
Retain Culture Ireland at at least its current funding.
Retain Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism as a Ministry.
Retain Arts Council funding at its current level.

At it’s simplest your email can be simply:

Dear X

My name is Y, I make my living in the arts in your consituency, and I am a member of Dublin Central Arts Workers. I am looking for your support to achieve the following:

[paste in campaign goals]

If you have a personal story to tell, and/or an example of the arts in the Dublin Central area, please add it.

I will also post DAST’s own independent survey and this gives a very strong economic case for the arts. For example, it shows that for every 1 euro put into the arts the government is getting 3 back directly in taxation from the cultural sector, and an additional €10 in associated econimic activity (Exchequer Impacts of the Sector). In other words if the covernment wants money to fund key public services it should keep money in the arts.

So far our representatives have been fairly positive with regard to the arts. However, until they get a sense that real people living in their constituencies are passionate and informed about the arts, then they may not follow through to get the camapign goals. So please write those emails.

When you have sent your emails or letters, please let us know through comments here (or cc ), and encourage as many people as you can to do the same, and join the group if they have not done so already.

All the best,

Gavin Kostick

Next Meeting

Please come to a meeting for the Dublin Central Arts Workers, Wednesday 14th October, 5pm at Project Arts Centre. Two hours Max.

The purpose of this meeting is to:

(a) Briefly report back how the campaign is going since we first met.

(b) Get a fix on how things are developing nationally (lots of groups active).

(c) Discuss what to do about new developments.

(d) Plan how to push through to the end of the year to achieve the campaign goals.

I appreciate there’s loads of new members since the campaign started (hooray). This is a chance for us to meet our fellow arts workers and for all to contribute to the campaign.

If you have any issues that you think should be discussed at the meeting, you can reply to this blog, use the public comment on facebook, or email .


Councillor Claire O’Regan

Myself and Maria Fleming (General Manager, Barabbas) met with Councillor Claire O’Regan (Lab), Monday 14th September.

Again a very postive meeting with Claire supportive of the goals of the campaign at council level – a freeze at worst of arts spend, and the retention of Jack Gilligan’s position after he retires in October.

Since the meeting Claire has emailed to say that she has raised the issue of Jack’s position, and has raised the idea of a cultural map for Dublin with the Office for International Relations.

Gavin Kostick

Visual Artists Ireland

The view from VAI

VAI submission to government concerning the forthcoming negotiations for programme for government and the 2010 budget negotiations.

Little Piece Online

The Irish Theatre Magazine online has a piece by Peter Crawley here