Arts audiences in Finland


  • Seppo Suominen lehtori



Arts audiences in Finland

A survey conducted in 2013 by the Finnish Cultural Foundation studied Finnish views on and thoughts about culture and its consumption. About 30 % in the sample had not visited any cultural attractions or events. The main cultural activities visited or attended were theatre, museum, art exhibitions, pop music concerts and movies at a cinema. In addition to these consumers seem to favour classical music. Opera, folk music and dance events had the lowest attendance figure. Our study contributes to the literature by identifying the determinants of participation level and of each category in arts consumption in Finland. First the overall participation level is studied by employing multiple choice and ordered logit and probit models as well as a bivariate probit model. We show how different socio-economic variables explain cultural consumption in Finland. Some insights into the distribution of state subsidises is discussed.

We examine to what extent standard socio-economic variables influence attendance at different cultural events. How these variables are related to the number of cultural events participated and what are the main differences between univore and omnivore consumers? A standard economic theory assumes that the marginal utility of any consumption diminishes. Is this valid in the case of cultural events consumption? Does the assumption reflect the idea that even if the consumers’ incomes increase, still they do not participate all cultural events?

Incomes, education and learning experiences accumulated and associated with age are important factors in the demand for arts, however, there are exceptions in Finland. The demand for folk music cannot be explained by differences in household’s incomes. Folk music category is more separated and not very popular among Finnish consumers. Dance events and folk music seem to have the smallest distance and all other categories are more far away

Keywords: Finland, cultural consumption, participation, logit, probit, art audiences

Kirjoittajan esittely

Seppo Suominen, lehtori

Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences

Hietakummuntie 1 A, FIN-00700 Helsinki





Suominen, S. (2017). Arts audiences in Finland. Kulttuuripolitiikan Tutkimuksen Vuosikirja, 172–187.