Switzerland/ 6. Financing of culture  

6.1 Short overview

In 2011, annual public spending on culture in Switzerland amounted to CHF 2.59 billion (corresponding to around EUR 2.15 billion). Public expenditure has increased from CHF 2.13 billion in 2005. The communes carry the main burden of public cultural expenditure at 51% of the sum total; cantonal expenditure on culture amounted to 38.5%, while federal expenditure was 10.3%. The new Culture Promotion Act provides for a four-year budgeting scheme. For the first period, 2012-2015, the Swiss parliament has approved the sum of CHF 637 million. In terms of GDP, public expenditure for culture in Switzerland totals 0.44%.

The three administrative levels set varying priorities in supporting the various sectors within the arts and culture. For instance, only the communes and cantons are active in the area of "theatre and concerts", and chiefly active with regard to supporting "libraries" and "museums" while the conservation of historical buildings and monuments is primarily a cantonal affair. The federal government is exceedingly present with regard to mass media and film, and it also supports the Pro Helvetia Foundation.

According to the income and consumption census (EVE), the average disposable income of private households per month in Switzerland was CHF 6 100.00 in 2012. According to the National Consumer Price Index, approximately 10% of this sum is spent on entertainment, recreation, and culture. According to surveys by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the Federal Statistical Office, Switzerland is middle-ranking country in Europe in this respect.


Chapter published: 13-11-2014


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