13. Conclusion

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This framework lays out the model for the design and analysis of culture statistics as they relate to the creative chain for culture goods and services. It provides the foundation for developing a coherent set of culture data that recognize the measurement of financial and economic flows associated with the supply and demand for culture goods and services, as well as the social impact of culture. In time, the framework will support the development of indicators and the identification of important data gaps.

This conceptual framework has been designed along with a companion document, entitled Classification Guide for the Canadian Framework for Culture Statistics 2011. The guide is intended to provide data users with a tool to map existing standard classification systems according to the definitions and domains outlined in this framework. The Canadian Framework for Culture Statistics (CFCS) provides the conceptual foundation for measurement, while the guide provides the tool to identify the relevant classification codes that will support data collection and analysis.

New methods may be required to measure the rapid metamorphosis of culture creators, audiences, and participants. The development of new electronic tools that act as mediating products for consumers, the growth in new types of culture products, and the ever-changing opportunities for individuals as creators, demand new measurement tools and creative analysis. There is an increasing demand for more nuanced information on consumer expectations and behaviour, for information about non-market sharing ('the grey economy') of culture products, as well as new ways to record the simultaneous consumption of culture products.

The international nature of culture, the globalisation of the world economy, and the fundamental structural transformations experienced in the sector, have also increased the need for comparable data. There are many challenges when comparing culture data internationally. The use of data, designed for national purposes, for international comparisons is a complicated matter as no country defines culture or culture consumers in exactly the same way. In addition, even surveys of similar industries use different ways of defining respondents, designing sampling techniques, reference periods, formats, and questions. The ability to compare data between surveys of both supply and demand are plagued by methodological differences large and small. This framework is intended to deal with many of these methodological differences at a national level, and attempts to use concepts proposed by UNESCO, to improve our ability to share data at the international level.

These new requirements do not replace the need for regular, consistent, comparable, and replicable data on the basic characteristics of culture products and their users. There continue to be gaps in the data available about both the supply and demand for culture and no consensus about how to fill them. The framework provides an updated structure that can help guide new approaches to classifying and collecting the data that are required to provide a wide-ranging and comprehensive view of the culture sector.

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