Sunday

25th Jun 2017

Focus

Culture in figures: Nordics most engaged

Compared to people from other parts of Europe, Scandinavians are the most inclined to spend their time and money on culture.

The Danes are the biggest spenders. Some 5.5 percent of everything they spend goes into books, films, and other things cultural. They go the cinema more often than any other nation in the EU. In 2006, less than half of Europeans went to see a movie at least once.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

  • The Swedes and the Finns have the most artists and creative writers as a share of population (Photo: Steve Rhodes)

"On spending, the Danes are followed by the Finns and the Czechs, whose “share of cultural expenditure in total household expenditure,” according to the EU’s latest figures (from 2005), amounts to five percent each. On average in the EU, that number is around four percent."

The Danes are also among the most creative in the EU, together with the Swedes, the Finns and the Latvians. The Swedes and the Finns boast the most artists and creative writers as a share of population.

But it is non-EU members Iceland and Norway who steal the show. Some 3.2 and 2.6 percent of their workforce, respectively, is employed in the cultural sector. The EU average is 1.7 percent.

The Danes are not, however, the most often enrolled in art school. Instead, it is the British and the Irish who top the bill. Of all university students there, some 6.8 and 6.6 percent respectively study the arts, compared to 3.8 percent on average in the EU.

In general in Europe, those in the north are more culturally savvy than those in the south, if statistics are anything to go by. But there are some outliers.

Luxembourg is one. After Bulgaria and Greece, its citizens spend less on culture than anybody else in the EU. Its share of cultural workers is well below the average.

Malta is another. It scores above average on most indicators. Its citizens do not go to the cinema much, but they study the humanities like no other.

There are differences between men and women, too. Women are much bigger readers than men. In every single country in the EU, the share of women who read at least one book per year is at least 10 percent higher than the share of men.

Most books are read in Sweden and Finland. Figures for Denmark are not available. The Czech Republic is a notable third.

Compared to other parts of the world, finally, Europe is a cultural hub. Not only does it boast more Unesco World Heritage sites than any other region but it also export 50 percent more cultural goods than it imports.

It trades most in books and paintings, predominantly with the US and Switzerland.

Culture: 'A new wind is blowing in Europe'

Faced with falling ticket sales, cultural institutions in Europe should be looking both for ways to reach new audiences and keep existing audiences on board, according to the European Commission.

News in Brief

  1. Merkel and Macron hold symbolic joint press conference
  2. Juncker has 'no' clear idea of kind of Brexit UK wants
  3. Belgian PM calls May's proposal on EU citizens 'vague'
  4. UK lacks support of EU countries in UN vote
  5. Spain to command anti-smuggler Mediterranean force
  6. Estonia confirms opposition to Nord Stream 2 pipeline
  7. Ireland and Denmark outside EU military plan
  8. EU leaders renew vows to uphold Paris climate deal

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. EPSUOn Public Services Day, Stop Austerity! Workers Need a Pay Rise!
  2. EGBAOnline Gambling: The EU Court Rejects Closed Licensing Regimes In Member States
  3. World VisionFaces of Today, Leaders of Tomorrow: Join the Debate on Violence Against Girls - 29 June
  4. ECR GroupThe EU Must Better Protect Industry from Unfair Competition
  5. Malta EU 2017Better Protection for Workers From Cancer-Causing Substances
  6. EPSUAfter 9 Years of Austerity Europe's Public Sector Workers Deserve a Pay Rise!
  7. Dialogue PlatformGlobalised Religions and the Dialogue Imperative. Join the Debate!
  8. UNICEFEU Trust Fund Contribution to UNICEF's Syria Crisis Response Reaches Nearly €200 Million
  9. EUSEW17Bringing Buildings Into the Circular Economy. Discuss at EU Sustainable Energy Week
  10. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceCan an Ideal Body Weight Lead to Premature Death?
  11. Malta EU 2017End of Roaming Charges: What Does It Entail?
  12. World VisionWorld Refugee Day, a Dark Reminder of the Reality of Children on the Move

Latest News

  1. Macron’s investment screening idea watered down by leaders
  2. Leaders unimpressed by May’s offer to EU citizens
  3. New Irish PM praises unscripted nature of EU summits
  4. EU extends sanctions on Russia
  5. UK's universities set 'Brexit wish list'
  6. Decision on post-Brexit home for EU agencies postponed
  7. May's offer on citizens’ rights dismissed as ‘pathetic’
  8. 'Historic' defence plan gets launch date at EU summit