Print this Page
Print this Page

3% of all workers were employed in the cultural sector in 2012.


Wages in the the public cultural sector are better than the average wages in the Slovenian economy,  by about 15%.

Show all Profile-News...

Slovenia/ 4.2 Specific policy issues and recent debates  

4.2.9 Employment policies for the cultural sector

According to the data of the Slovenian Statistical Office there were 24 436 workers in culture in 2013, of which 17 743 were employed in public institutions, the private sector and by individual entrepreneurs and 6 693 were self-employed (A note: this number significantly differs from the number of self-employed listed in the official registry of self-employed of the Ministry of Culture RS). Of the latter, there were 2 218 registered self-employed in the registrar of the Slovenian Ministry of Culture and finally 1 494 (2012) of those were eligible for payment of social security by the Ministry of Culture.

The number of cultural workers in Slovenia amounts to about 3% of all workforce in the Slovenian economy, and has been constantly rising in percentage from 2000-2010 (source: Ministry of Culture RS), amounting to 2.48% in 2002, 2.63% in 2005, 2.75% in 2008, 2.92% in 2009, 3.04% in 2010 and 3.09% in 2011 and 2012.

Table 6:     Number of employed and self-employed cultural workers, 2005-2013


Employed persons in culture

Self-employed persons in culture

Total employed workers in culture


17 480

3 942

21 422


17 975

4 154

22 129


18 401

4 366

22 767


19 248

4 986

24 234


19 080

5 556

24 636


18 889

5 977

24 866


18 629

6 203

24 832


18 314

6 179

24 493


17 743

6 693

24 436

Source:     Ministry of Culture RS 2014.

Among the employees, the most frequent occupations are libraries and archives (1 743 employees in 2013), publishing of books (834 employees in 2013), publishing of newspapers (1 175 employees in 2013), architecture and urbanism (1 436 employees in 2013), art performance (1 240 employees in 2013), TV workers (1 610 employees in 2013), advertising (1 249 employees in 2013) and education and training in the field of culture (1 862 employees in 2013). Among those occupations one can observe a diminishing number of employees in the fields of book and newspaper publishing and TV workers. The most likely reason for this trend is the emergence of alternative occupations in the media, most of all in internet and electronic media. All other noted occupations were in a rising trend by 2010, perhaps most notably were an increase in architects (almost 400 new employees in the period 2005-2010) and advertising and education and training (about 250 new employees during the same period); yet there was a decline after 2010, most likely due to the effects of the global financial crisis (in 2013 the number of architects was again almost the same as in 2005).

Among the self-employed, the most frequent occupation is art creation (2 116 self-employed in 2013); followed by architects and urbanists (962 self-employed in 2013); translators (711 self-employed in 2013); and designers (600 self-employed in 2013). All of those occupations are on a constant increase, rising by almost 300 new self-employed during the period 2005-2013 in each of the named occupations.

The total number of employees was rising until 2008, but fell in the following years, coming to almost exactly the same number of workers as were employed in 2005. The number of self-employed is on the rise significantly, rising by more than 2 500 new self-employed workers in 2013 as compared to 2005, an average yearly growth of more than 6.8%.

Table 7 show the growth in gross salaries in the cultural sector during the period 2000-2010. As one can firstly note, all of the professions showed a significant rise in salaries during the first period (2000-2005), being most notable in media activities (distribution of films, videos and TV shows; cinema; publishing of newspapers; production of films, videos and TV shows), design and cultural heritage. This is shown by an average chain index for the period 2000-2005 being shown in the fourth column of the Table.

Yet this trend slowly declined in the period (2005-2010), still rather steep in a few occupations (photography making, cinema, accompanying activities for art performance, production of films, videos and TV shows), almost stagnant in previously rising design and cultural heritage professions, while the salaries in certain professions (recording and publishing of musical works, architecture, translating and interpreting, loaning of video recordings) are starting to decline and experienced a nominal lowering of wages. Yet in most of the professions salaries almost doubled since 2000 and increased by almost 30% since 2005.

Table 7:     Average gross salary in the cultural sector 2000-2005 and indexes of growth


Average Gross Salary (in EUR)

Index of growth





1 358.71

106.54 (avrg. 2000-2005)


1 399.93



1 471.91



1 594.37



1 662.14



1 694.90


Source: Ministry of Culture RS 2011.

Still as one can observe from Table 8, the gross salaries of cultural workers are lower than both the comparable salaries of doctors, teachers as well as judges. The comparison is a little bit more favourable if one observes the public sector workers in culture which can be compared to gross salaries of high school teachers and judges. Doctors fare higher, while university teachers have significantly higher gross wages.

Table 8:     Average gross salaries in different occupations 2005-2010


Average gross wages in EUR: Cultural activities – all

Public sector workers in culture

Workers in non-cultural occupations in Slovenia

Doctors (in hospitals)

Teachers (high school)

Teachers (university)



1 358.71

1 398.31

1 157.07

1 427.54

1 553.60

1 928.88

1 539.76


1 399.93

1 445.64

1 212.80

1 473.24

1 622.67

1 951.05

1 560.38


1 471.91

1 491.97

1 284.79






1 594 37

1 644.38

1 391.43

1 737.51

1 795.89

2 136.69

1 737.91


1 662 14

1 765.56

1 438.96

1 993.54

1 852.93

2 245.68

1 822.10


1 694 90

1 795.17

1 494.88

1 987.72

1 868.26

2 316.91

1 831.95

Source: Ministry of Culture RS 2011; Statistical Office of RS.

Nevertheless the wages in culture are better than the average wages in the Slovenian economy, being higher by about 15%.

Slovene cultural regulation aims to encourage a programme related to the employment policy. In the last couple of years, new permanent jobs in public cultural institutions have been restricted and that is why it is necessary to find more flexible ways to employ the best human resources and to accommodate the working force to the needs of organisational development and capacity building according to a more entrepreneurial approach to culture (i.e. risk taking, innovation, competitiveness) The Act Regulating the Realisation of the Public Interest in the Field of Culture (2002) offers a legal basis for the gradual transition from permanent to programme related temporary employment. However, this could be done only with the introduction of the promotional measures that create modes and forms capable to represent a positive alternative to rigid public servant status. In the absence of such measures and related fresh funds, no deeper structural changes in human resources management have been possible yet. The share for salaries of employees in the public sector is constantly increasing, with the consequence that the financial sources for programmes and activities of public institutions are decreasing. Therefore, public institutions cannot fulfil their mission. Furthermore, fixed costs are increasing (material costs). The amount of financial resources is not increasing proportionally. Although there are statistical data for the last 20 years, based on 2 different methodologies, we can confirm that funds for salaries have increased from 40% to 70% of all funds used by public institutions.

In 2003, the Salary System in the Public Sector Act was adopted. The Law imposes a unified system of salaries for all civil and public servants. The main reason for passing the Law was to unify the salary system that has become unclear, because of different amendments enforced in various fields (i.e. health, judiciary). The implementation of the Law demands larger amounts of financial resources for salaries in public cultural institutions, however, the amount of budget resources did not comparably increase. This is the main reason for the increase in the amount of financial funds for salaries in public institutions. The system of public servants automatically increases the necessary means on behalf of regular promotions and has no incorporated mechanisms for adjusting personnel policy to programme needs or capabilities. In September 2008 the implementation of the new system reached its final stage and salaries for public cultural workers were increased by 16% to bring them into line with other public salaries.

In 2010 and 2011 some progress was made in the field of self-employed cultural workers. On one hand, a more structured dialogue with national authorities has been enabled by forming a special dialogue group with representatives of self-employed workers, and on the other, progress has been made due to the work of this commission: the awards and Ministry's working stipends will be deductible from the census for self-employed workers and the census will be subject to income averaging over three years. Lastly, in the following years until 2013, there were significant upheavals in the self-employed sector in culture, firstly, by the amendments in the Decree on self-employed persons in the field of culture. This decree specified much more restrictive conditions under which a special status of the Ministry covering social contributions of a certain, selected group of self-employed in culture would be provided, and, secondly, changes in the new tax and pension legislation which completely neglected the effects of such legislation on the self-employed (in all sectors). It was it was shown (in a study by Asociacija, Association of Slovenian Journalists and Open Chamber for Contemporary Art) that such measures will significantly reduce already lower incomes of the self-employed. In 2013, finally, the new Minister of Culture, Dr. Uroš Grilc adopted three measures to reduce these effects: the possibility of free accountancy for those self-employed in culture; a measure for enabling the self-employed to have paid remuneration for periods of illness lasting less than 30 days (this was not possible before); and so-called "pocket money", special forms of small grants available to a selected (very small, about 60 in number) group of self-employed in culture. It remains to be seen what the long-lasting effects of those measures will be, as well as what other measures may be required to remedy both social as well as economic restrictions for those who are self-employed.

Chapter published: 11-02-2015

Your Comments on this Chapter?