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The average monthly net wage of those employed in entertainment, sports, and culture in 2013 was 75.3 % of the average wage of all employees.

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Estonia/ 4.2 Specific policy issues and recent debates  

4.2.9 Employment policies for the cultural sector

According to labour force surveys conducted by the Statistical Office, the share of persons employed (or self-employed) in the fields of entertainment, sports, and culture amounted to around 2.9% of the labour force in 2013. The average monthly net wage of this group corresponded to 715 EUR, which was 75.3 % of the average of all employees.

Table 2:     Number of persons employed within arts, entertainment, and leisure, according to labour force surveys from 2000, 2005-2012*


Persons employed


15 500


14 300


14 700


14 200


14 800


17 700


18 300


15 000


14 100

Source:     Statistics Estonia.
*               The category includes the following sub-categories: Creative, artistic and entertainment activities; Activities of libraries, archives, museums and other cultural institutions; Organising gambling and betting; Sports and leisure activities.

In the case of theatres, employment has been used as an argument in favour of preserving the existing institutional structure, especially in the provinces. As a way of decentralising theatre policies, decisions on subsidies for theatres and dance theatres are directly based on their employment figures, since 2004. This model was taken from the Finnish system of financing theatres. It can also be pointed out that the programme of restoring schools located in historical manor buildings will enable their future functioning as multi-functional community centres and thus will also be able to create a number of new working opportunities related to library services, concerts, tourism, etc.

In practice, many cultural creators continue to find themselves forced to work in fields not related to their profession in order to provide for social and health insurance.

Chapter published: 13-10-2014

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