2. Methodology

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The analysis in this paper is based on employment data from the 1991, 1996 and 2001 Censuses of Population. This paper focuses on the 1990s for two reasons. First, the 1990s were a time of significant change in the Canadian economy. The growing importance of information and communication technologies such as the internet, the effect of the North American Free Trade Agreement and the rise of global competition are just three examples of important economic developments during this decade. Hence, the 1990s are of particular interest for assessing the role which culture-based occupations play in the economy. Second, and from a more practical standpoint, data limitations resulting largely from changes to the occupational coding system preclude the inclusion of data from prior to the 1991 Census of Population in this study. Also, at the time of this writing, employment data from the 2006 Census were not yet available.

This study relies on the Canadian Framework for Culture Statistics to determine which occupations are cultural in nature. The Framework defines culture occupations to be those which involve "creative artistic activity and the goods and services produced by it, and the preservation of human heritage." Examples of culture occupations in the Framework include artists, writers and museum curators. Other types of occupations that are not directly related to the production of culture goods and services but provide technical, managerial or manufacturing support are also included in the Framework . Examples of these are performing arts managers, library clerks and audiovisual technicians. The complete list of 48 culture occupations is presented in Table 1 and is taken from the Framework . Of these, 21 directly involve creative and artistic production or heritage collection and preservation (core culture occupations) while the other 27 are culture support occupations. This study restricts itself to examining the role that core creative culture occupations play in the economy and excludes culture support occupations. The core creative culture occupations in the Framework are more directly related to the forms of creativity emphasized recently by Richard Florida. As can be seen in Table 1, the core creative culture occupations can be divided into four main occupational groups. These are the literary arts, the visual arts and design, performing arts and heritage occupations. Although this study focuses on employment trends for just the core creative occupations, for ease of exposition, from this point onwards, the term "culture workers" is used instead of core culture workers to refer to those employed in core creative occupations.

In the Census, employed workers are classified according to occupation (using the Standard Occupational Classification) and also according to the industry to which their employer belongs. The Standard Industrial Classification - Establishments (SIC-E) was used to define industries for the 1991 and 1996 Censuses. For the 2001 Census, both the SIC-E and the new North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) were used to classify workers by industry. A figure illustrating the structure of both classification systems is presented in Appendix 1 and can be used as a reference for those readers not familiar with them.

The SIC-E was selected for this study since it was used to code workers for all three Censuses. Hence, selecting the SIC-E avoided issues arising from back casting data, which would have been unavoidable if NAICS had been used instead. Because the Census double-codes workers by both occupation and by industry, it is possible to determine the occupations found in any industry and also the number of workers employed in each occupation that comprises an industry. For example, for the Motion Picture and Video Industry, it is possible to estimate the number of actors, broadcast technicians, managers and workers in other occupations that are employed in the industry. Hence, by taking advantage of the double-coding of workers by both occupation and industry, census data can be used to calculate the extent to which culture workers are used as labour inputs for a wide variety of economic activities.

The SIC-E divides the economy into 18 Divisions; examples include, Manufacturing and Business Services. Divisions therefore represent a very high level of aggregation in the SIC-E. Each Division is further subdivided into major groups of industries, the second level of aggregation. In SIC-E, there are a total of 76 major groups. These in turn are divided into industry groups. Hence, an industry group is the third level of aggregation in the SIC-E. As well as defining which occupations are cultural in nature, the Framework also specifies which industries are cultural. Based on the Framework, a total of 20 industry groups are considered to be cultural in nature and these are listed in Table 2. Many are embedded within major groups that are, on the whole, non-cultural. For example, the communications industry (a major group) includes both broadcasting and postal and courier services. The former is a culture industry group while the latter is not. Since this study focuses on culture employment in non-culture areas of the economy, the 20 cultural industry groups were separated from the higher aggregation major group level. Considered together, the 20 cultural industry groups form the culture sector of the economy in this study. The workers remaining in the major groups, after the removal of the culture industries, therefore compose the non-culture portion of the economy.5 The number of culture workers and the size of the total workforce for each Division were calculated, allowing the proportion of culture workers (out of the total number of workers) to be determined.6 The proportion of culture workers in each Division in turn indicates the extent to which culture workers are used as labour inputs to produce goods and services in that Division.

Since the 2001 Census of Population was coded using both industrial classification systems, it was possible to investigate the extent to which the choice of SIC-E led to different results in 2001 compared to the case if NAICS had been used for that year. It was found that one major group and one industry group in the SIC-E contained a large number of culture workers who would have been classified as working in culture industries had NAICS been used, even though they are non-culture industries in SIC-E.7 Hence, whether they should be included in the culture sector or the non-culture sector is ambiguous. Therefore, for the purposes of this study, both are considered to be separate from the culture sector and the non-culture sector and are referred to as "unallocated industries." Hence, using SIC-E, the Canadian economy was divided into three broad sectors: the non-culture sector composed of 74 major groups (with culture industry groups removed), the culture sector, and unallocated industries. In this paper, overall patterns of culture worker employment in the non-culture sector are examined along with employment patterns in specific Divisions.

Table 1
Culture occupations

Table 2
List of SIC-E Industry Groups defined to be in the Culture Sector for this study