Chapter 3 Music, Society and Citizenship

CEEMID has collected hundreds of indicators since 2014 on this topic. We would like to invite our partners to find a few relevant indicators and publish them here. Some of these indicators require explicit permission from public bodies or from partners, given existing data acquisition costs.

3.1 Education, training, personal development

When we presented the case-study on national and comparative evidence-based policymaking in the cultural and creative sector on the CCS Ecosystems: FLIPPING THE ODDS Conference (see an edited version of the presentation in our blogpost with further details), we emphasised a very important structural problem of the creative sectors that is a very significant burden in the case of the music industry, too.

In the music industry, most enterprises are sole proprietorships, micro- or small enterprises which do not possess strategic human resources (HR) and research and development (R&D) functions. Because music is a high-labor added, high-value added sector, participation in lifelong learning programs would be crucial, but very difficult to organize. Companies with 1-2 employees do not have specialized management and support functions, and thus have a very strong handicap in HR and R&D.

*"A good example of this problem is the motion picture and TV industry. These industries were comprised of medium-sized enterprises in the 1980s with significant in-house education functions. The current structure of these industries, however, resembles music, with almost all enterprises staying below the 5-person threshold. In our experience, based on development needs assessments in the Hungarian motion picture and the Czech music industry, this creates an acute skills and labor shortage. Missing skills cannot be replaced appropriately through recruitment or with strategic HR development via life-long learning.

In addition to very reduced opportunities to participate in, and create life-long learning schemes, there are very little chances to engage in market research and R&D. While the music industry, for example, is one of the most data-driven industries in the world, the micro-enterprise size does not allow these enterprises to commission market research or hire data scientists. This leads to very asymmetrical relationships with the main distributors of music and media content on platforms that are owned by global data companies."*

Our surveys are not only asking about the professional development of music professionals, but in some cases, they are designed to create industry-level vocational training programs.

3.2 Audiences

We are using surveys to compare and contrast views on music and the arts, as well as participation in amateur forms of music playing, and of course, participation in listening, with surveys directed at the general population and special surveys directed at music professionals (artists, technicians and managers.)

CEEMID has been making quantitative research for music and audiovisual audiences since 2014, using high-quality live interview surveys conducted by market leading opinion polling companies.

We have been carefully following the surveying guidance of the Final Report of the Working Group European Statistical System Network on Culture (in short: ESSnet-Culture) (Bína, Vladimir et al. 2012); detailed guidelines can be found in the report of the Task Force on Cultural Practices And Social Aspects Of Culture.

So far, CEEMID has carried out 7 detailed, nationally representative CAP surveys for music and audiovisual use, which it retrospectively harmonized with EU 2007 and EU 2013 surveys (see ?? Annex - Survey harmonization.)

In the example below, we are comparing the demographics of European concert audiences.

We can re-create these indicators not only on national, but on federal state / provincial / regional levels for almost all EU countries, except for very small countries.

There are further pan-European surveys that can make more recent data available, and we are currently seeking approval from Eurostat and its partners to access those more recent datasets and to publish pan-European statistical data here. We would like to release comparative data not only from 2007 and 2013, but from more recent years, too.

3.2.1 Future Audiences

Music is not only about musicians and its current audiences. The ability to listen to music, understand music, play music and compose music provides people with skills that makes them happier and more successful individuals in the 21st century.

People usually discover new music in their young age as they are forming their own personal identity with their peer group.

In some European countries, the size of the future audience has changed dramatically: in Latvia, it is about a 60% smaller group than it was when the country gained independence in 1991.

Growth In Music Disovery Age Population, select countries

Figure 3.1: Growth In Music Disovery Age Population, select countries

The music discovery phase is strongly related to the time when most people get their music education: their skills to listen to music, play music or sing, and to compose new music. Investment into music education pays of in later age: people with more diverse music education, for example, with the ability to play music, tend to visit concerts more or discover more music in later life stages.

The changes across Europe are dramatic: in Latvia and the Baltic states, the music discovery age population decreased by 60% since the countries (re-)gained independence in 1991. Musicians and their organizations must work hard in these countries on developing export strategies if they want to maintain the market and audience of their music. In other countries, like the Netherlands and Turkey, the future audience have been growing. In Turkey this is mainly related to population growth, in the Netherlands to immigration. Countries with a growing young population have a strong position for their music business.

Read more about this indicator and its use in the Data & Lyrics blog


Bína, Vladimir, Chantepie, Philippe, Deboin, Valérie, Kommel, Kutt, Kotynek, Josef, and Robin, Philippe. 2012. “ESSnet-CULTURE, European Statistical System Network on Culture. Final Report.” Edited by Frank, Guy.