Arts Nation is the home for the Australia Council’s research and knowledge management. In 2015 the Australia Council published Arts Nation: An overview of Australian arts, establishing a set of indicators and measures of arts and culture in Australia. In 2017 Arts Nation became an interactive web presence. Online, Arts Nation continues and expands the work of the original publication, presenting the full range of Australia Council research in an interactive and accessible format.ABOUT

Latest Research

Reading the reader: A survey of Australian reading habits provides insights into contemporary preferences, behaviours and attitudes of Australians towards books and reading. The Australia Council has partnered with Macquarie University on this third and final stage of their three-year research project titled ‘The Australian Book Industry: Authors, Publishers and Readers in a Time of Change’.

The survey explores:

  • Who’s reading books, how much and what kinds of books.
  • How Australians discover and choose books to read.
  • How Australians acquire books, and rates of reading print books, ebooks and audiobooks.
  • Attitudes to Australian books and the Australian book industry.
  • The value Australians place on books and reading.
  • Interaction with books and reading through online platforms such as fan fiction sites, podcasts and social media.

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TYPES OF READERS
THE READER PROFILE

TYPES OF READERS

92% of Australians are classified as readers, based on having read at least one book (in full or part) in the last year.

Just over half are occasional readers (read between 1 and 10 books in the last year), and 41% are frequent readers (read more than ten books in the last year).

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THE READER PROFILE

The most frequent Australian readers tend to be tertiary-educated, female, and aged 30–59.

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Explore Research

Other Research

SHOWCASING CREATIVITY
KEY FINDINGS
INTERVIEWS

SHOWCASING CREATIVITY

Showcasing Creativity: Programming and Presenting First Nations Performing Arts

Showcasing Creativity reports on the level and types of First Nations performing arts programming in Australia’s mainstream venues and festivals; the presenting of works to audiences; and the motivations and obstacles for presenters and producers.

This research aims to promote and inform discussion about what is needed to achieve a culturally ambitious nation that cherishes First Nations arts.READ MORE

KEY FINDINGS

Showcasing Creativity: Programming and Presenting First Nations Performing Arts

  • National mapping of the programs of 135 Australian presenters found that First Nations performing arts are under-represented in Australia’s mainstream venues and festivals. They comprised around 2% of the almost 6000 works programmed in 2015 seasons.
  • Almost half of Australian presenters did not appear to program works with First Nations creative control, involvement or content in 2015, including major venues and festivals.
  • Some presenters program a comparatively large number of First Nations works. Just 12 presenters (9%) were responsible for more than a third of all First Nations programming in 2015.

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INTERVIEWS

Showcasing Creativity: Programming and Presenting First Nations Performing Arts

Quotes from research participants:

Our theatres need to tell contemporary Australian stories and it’s incumbent on us if we’re telling those contemporary Australian stories, to tell the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander story.

I thought it was too hard hitting a work for this community. I didn’t have the courage to do it. And I probably should have… It was such a strong, brave, fabulous work.

So often Aboriginal arts get pigeon-holed as just something cultural, but I want to show that…it is evolving and there is innovation and there’s really exciting and talented artists that are producing fabulous work

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Arts and Cultural Attendance and Participation: Local Region Rates

From dancing in Darwin to art gallery attendance on the Gold Coast to creative writing in Parramatta, this interactive tool presents the proportions of people in local communities who attend and create the arts. Using 2013/14 Australian Bureau of Statistics data, it covers cultural attendance and participation across art, craft, theatre, dance, music, and literature. You can profile your local region, compare it to other regions, select a metropolitan location and compare it to a regional location, and compare any region to the state or national average.READ MORE