Making Cross-Country Comparisons of Cultural Statistics: Problems and Solutions

Australia Council and IFACCA,
24 October 2004, Australia

Cross-country comparisons are popular in cultural policy. This paper looks at how cultural statistics are used in the making of such comparisons. Analysts have identified a general ‘sloppiness’ in current cultural statistics comparisons. The paper documents some of the major problems, in both data production and in data presentation, and provides a ‘checklist’ of good practice. The paper aims to provide guidance and ideas for anyone making cross-country comparisons of cultural statistics.