Executive summary

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The Canadian Culture Satellite Account (CSA) was developed by Statistics Canada with the support of the Department of Canadian Heritage and its many partners.Note 1 The Canadian CSA provides measures of the economic importance of culture (inclusive of the arts and heritage) and sport in Canada in terms of output, gross domestic product and employment, for reference year 2010.

In the CSA, culture is defined as a creative, artistic activity, the goods produced by it, and the preservation of heritage. Sport is defined as an individual or group activity often pursued for fitness during leisure time which may be undertaken for fun or competition. Sport includes recreational sports and physical activities, as well as professional, semi-professional or amateur sport clubs and independent athletes that are primarily engaged in presenting sporting events before an audience. Culture and sport estimates are mutually exclusive of one another.

The CSA is a product of both the 2011 Canadian Framework for Culture Statistics (CFCS) and the Canadian System of National Accounts (CSNA). The CFCS provides the guiding principles to define and identify cultural economic activity, whereas the CSNA provides the mechanism and data to derive the estimates.

Culture or sport are not explicitly identified as industries within the CSNA but are rather activities found in several industries within its framework. As such, it is necessary to identify and extract all the culture or sport activities from within the economy and present  in a coherent form—a satellite account.

While other studies measure the importance of culture, the satellite account approach is both comprehensive and compatible with other macroeconomic indicators and accounts. The CSA allows comparisons with other industries or other activities, and uses a set of concepts and definitions common to the CSNA, the primary building block of the CSA.

The CSA 2010 estimates were derived primarily from the 2010 Input-Output Accounts, within the CSNA, with specific methodologies used to identify the components of culture and sport. The CSA entails regrouping the CSNA according to culture concepts. Once all culture and sport industries are identified, output, GDP and jobs for culture and sport can be estimated.

The CSA measures the economic importance of culture and sport to the Canadian economy from two unique perspectives:

  • Product- which groups culture and sport by product which measures culture or sport output, GDP and jobs regardless as to whether the products were produced by establishments in culture or non-culture industries. And;
  • Industry- which groups culture and sport by industry and measures the output, GDP and jobs of culture industries or sport industries. It covers all of the output produced by establishments in these industries including non-culture and non-sport products.


  1. A complete list of partners is available in the Acknowledgement section of this report.
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