Financing and Governance of Culture in Finland

In 2003-2004 the Foundation financed a one-year research project ”Financing and Governance of Culture in Finland”. The project team was led by professor (emeritus) Ilkka Heiskanen, University of Helsinki, with professors Pertti Ahonen and Lasse Oulasvirta, University of Tampere, acting as members of the research team.

The aim of the project was to project carry out an evaluative analysis of the present organisation of financing of culture in Finland, assess its adequacy and, using scenario techniques, present alternative options for its development for the eight-year period 2004-2012.

 

 

From the analytical point of view the focus of the project was on the compatibility of public and private financing. In addition, special attention was paid to the synergetic use of financing in functional sectors (education, creation, production, diffusion, and storing) and to its innovative and chronological management in different institutional sectors (art forms, types of cultural services).

Secondly, the analysis of financing was broadened to a more general analysis of governance. In addition to the “carrot” (financing), these analyses cover also “sticks and sermons”, that is, regulative and normative control and cognitive guidance mechanisms. Here too the synchrony and synergy between the activities of public and private (profit and non-profit) sectors were the main foci of analyses, which were carried out against the contextual backdrops of the on-going restructuring of Finnish public administration, the increasing importance of EU-induced policies and the escalating development of the information society.

In the analyses of financing, the project mostly used secondary statistical data, annual accounts and the auditing reports of administrative agencies and cultural and art institutions, as well as official evaluative documents (e.g. the reports of the State Auditing Office). The collecting of financial data has been linked with recent attempts by the EUROSTAT to develop comparable European statistics on public expenditure on the arts and culture.

In forecasting the future development of financing, special attention was paid to the re-structuring of the European “gaming and gambling sector”, which will affect the future financing of the arts and culture gained from the profits of state lottery and sports-betting.

In the analyses of governance, the material consisted mainly of documents on legislative reforms (such as those pertaining to the organisation of central government financial transfers to regional and municipal level) and on the re-organisation of cultural policy administration and the management of cultural and art institutions.

The forecasting and scenario construction started with trend analyses of financing which were then contextualised in terms of the observed and expected ideological and structural changes in governance. Qualitative scenario construction was used to anticipate subsequent changes.

The results of the study were presented as a report (in Finnish), which was published by Cupore in Spring 2005. The first part of the report consists of an overall assessment, and presents scenarios for the future: the second part presents selected economic and institutional analyses of strategically central issues.

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