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Culture Satellite Account

Data Shows Economic Value of Culture, Arts, Heritage, Sport

Statistics Canada data, released on June 9, 2015, gave Nova Scotians and government a clearer understanding of the economic importance of the province's culture and sport sectors.

The 2010 Provincial/Territorial Culture Satellite Account (PTCSA) figures showed that arts, culture and heritage contributed about $868 million to Nova Scotia's economy, and 14,305 jobs across the province.

Sport contributed close to $88 million to the Nova Scotian economy and represents more than 2,100 jobs.

This PTCSA data marked the first time such detailed, economic culture data for the provinces and territories was available.

The data continues to support government’s business focus on the creative industries.

To create and develop the Culture Satellite Account, all thirteen provincial and territorial governments of the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Table on Culture and Heritage (FPT Table) worked together to fund the project with Canadian Heritage and other partners, such as the Creative City Network of Canada (inclusive of Halifax), and OCAD University in Toronto.

Nova Scotia continues to play a key role as national co-chair of the Cultural Statistics Working Group, a sub-committee of the FPT Table.


Development of the Culture Satellite Account

The Culture Satellite Account is an accounting framework that measures how culture, the arts, heritage and sport contribute to Canada’s GDP and to jobs. It provides important insights about culture's role nationally.

The Culture Satellite Account’s first national numbers were released on September 10, 2014, as part of the Ministers’ Meeting in Charlottetown, PEI. The data showed how GDP for the arts, culture and heritage contributed $47.8 billion to the Canadian economy - approximately 3.1% to the GDP in 2010 - and accounted for 647,301 jobs.

The result of collaboration between the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Table, Canadian Heritage, and other partners, with work done by Statistics Canada, the Culture Satellite Account uses a set of concepts and definitions that follow the 2011 Canadian Framework for Culture Statistics and is rooted in the Canadian System of Macroeconomic Accounts.

Prior to 2004, Statistics Canada reports on the economic impact of culture had traditionally used inflated figures when reporting GDP, including the indirect and induced impact, as well as the direct impact. It was determined the most accurate, reliable and comparative data would be derived from using direct impact figures only.

The first step to develop the Culture Satellite Account was to conduct a feasibility study, which took four years. The study was conducted to better identify what economic data could be produced for culture at the national level, and what methodology would be required to do so. The feasibility study was completed in April 2013.

The Culture Satellite Account is tangible proof of what can be accomplished when jurisdictions across Canada collaborate together on major initiatives. By building alliances within the sector and forging new links at all levels of government, the Culture Satellite Account data can be expanded to provide real support to the business case for culture.


To learn more, download the following documents:

Backgrounder  |  PDF         

FAQ  |  PDF                   

2015 Infographic  |  PDF

Data from the Provincial/Territorial Culture Satellite Account supports Nova Scotia’s expansive and interconnected culture community. It will encourage new and sustainable growth and will add to Nova Scotia’s economic and social prosperity.