Just released by European Commission mandarins, a 355-page slab of a report on The Economy of Culture in Europe (PDF, 4.5mb). It looks as though it has some rather useful chapters. Although, unsurprisingly, it begins by stating that:

“Statistical tools are not appropriate and available statistics are scarce. Statistical tools do not enable the cultural & creative sector to be captured properly. At European and national level, statistical categorisations are often too broad. Data are rarely comparable. A considerable amount of cultural activity takes place in establishments whose primary classification is non cultural and therefore not recorded within existing classifications. Self-employed cannot be identified. Electronic commerce, which represents a growing share of the economy of culture, is not taken into account.”

Yet, while “Self-employment cannot be identified” (er… even though it’s on my annual tax return) the report states that…

“A key notable feature of this sector is that it is overwhelmingly made up of small businesses (less than 10 employees), micro-businesses and self-employed/freelancers.”

Some notable suggestions are that “A European Passport for Artists could be developed.” alongside “supporting the networking of art schools” across Europe (er… say hello to ELIA), and developing a pan-European “creative industries bank” for business finance.