4.2.9 Employment policies for the cultural sector
According to data compiled by the Working Group on Cultural Statistics (ARKStat) about 815 000 persons were employed in German cultural industries in 2003 (based on EU definitions). Almost one quarter of those (197 000) were self-employed (the trend is rising), whereas the average share of self-employed persons in general employment in Germany amounts to around 10 %. In addition, 150 000 persons were employed in culture-related occupations outside of the cultural sector in production, trade, and private or public services. A total of 965 000 employed persons accounted for a share of 2.7 % of the total work force in Germany (36.2 million), which is comparable to the employment potential of the agricultural sector (895 000 persons). This share places Germany in the medium range in a European comparison, between France, Italy or Spain (ranging form 2.0 to 2.2 %) and the UK, the Netherlands and the Nordic countries, which range from 3.0 to 3.5 %.
Out of a total of 815 000 persons employed in 2003, 618 000 (= 75.8 %) were employees; more than 70 % (444 000 persons) of these were liable to social security deductions – this trend is decreasing. The remaining 174 000 persons were employed in mini-jobs, part-time or project-related contracts – this trend is rising. While the cultural sector showed an above-average economic dynamic during the mid-1990s (with a 5-year increase of more than 20 % as compared to a general growth in employment of 2 %), it slowed down between 1999 and 2004 to a rate of 7.2 %, which is clearly below the top results of the past decade. However, compared to a decrease in general employment of 2 % during the same period, this is still a remarkable development. For more statistical information see M. Söndermann: "Beschäftigung im Kultursektor in Deutschland 2003/2004. Ergebnisse aus der Kulturstatistik"; Jahrbuch für Kulturpolitik 2005, 459–477; "Der Kultursektor als Beschäftigungs - und Wirtschaftsfaktor in Europa"; Jahrbuch für Kulturpolitik 2007, 387–406. Internet: http://www.kulturstatistik.de.
The extent to which the cultural sector figures in labour market policy has been the subject of discussion for many years. Thus far, however, this discussion has had no sustained practical impact. While ideas and suggestions have been floated and small-scale programmes implemented at the Land level to generate employment in the cultural sector (such as the funding of centres for culture industry business start-ups in North Rhine-Westphalia), no national cultural policy strategy has been developed.
The new Bundesländer, but also some structurally weak regions in the west part of Germany, have repeatedly attracted EU funds to support employment in the cultural sector. These funds have been used to support, for example, the development of municipal cultural planning (in Brandenburg) or the training of cultural managers in the rural districts of Lower Saxony, co-financed by the Land and the Federal Agency of Labour.
Indirect employment effects for the cultural sector are also generated through other EU Structural Funds. The European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF) is often used to finance the restoration of protected monuments like castles and churches or for the protection and restoration of cultural heritage in the context of rural development. The Land Brandenburg derived funding from the European Programme for Regional Development (EFRE) to create a municipal investment programme for culture. In North-Rhine-Westphalia, the Ruhrgebiet has benefited the most from the Structural Funds, e. g. to develop the Zeche Zollverein in Essen, which is on the UNESCO list of World Cultural Heritage.
Therefore employment measures in some of the Bundesländer are at least indirectly supported via the Structural Funds of the EU as well as from economic and investment support programmes of the Länder and the Federal Government (e. g. the Investment Support Law), which are increasingly being opened up to the culture sector.