Nationwide Research on the Impact of Coronavirus on Culture
Dear artists and representatives of cultural institutions, organisations and creative industry enterprises,
On the decision of the chief medical officer, a nationwide ban on the organisation of cultural events came into effect on 10 March 2020. On 13 March 2020, this was extended to the closure of all leisure facilities until further notice. The anti-pandemic measures thus affected cultural institutes and the creative industries before the other sectors of the Slovak economy.
Self-employed artists, as well as cinemas, galleries, theatres, cultural centres and other visitor-orientated entities in the cultural sector and creative industries, are the group most vulnerable to the economic impact of anti-pandemic measures.
Two weeks into the ban, some of these entities may already find themselves in irresolvable economic situations. It is thus necessary to offer them hope and to let them know that we are not indifferent to their situation and that there is a way out of the current circumstances.
Even at this stage of combatting the pandemic, many EU countries are already taking steps to address “what comes next” by alleviating the economic impact of anti-pandemic measures and compensating for the preventative measures taken by states.
We Stand for Culture fully supports the measures adopted by the state to stem the spread of the pandemic. They are in the interest of us all.
The cultural sector was among the first sectors of the economy to be hit by the state of emergency. We want to believe that it will not be the last sector to be addressed with mitigating and easing measures.
Economic losses began to accumulate in the cultural sector even before 10 March and will not stop as soon as the ban is lifted. The re-opening of cinemas, theatres, cultural centres and other institutions will be more complicated than their closure. It is therefore essential that the government (and this also applies to the outgoing administration) begins to address the situation in individual sectors of the economy in tandem with proposing rapid and effective measures for “what comes next” that will make it easier for all economic sectors in Slovakia to return to business as usual.
For this reason, we’ve decided to create space on our platform for the concentrated collection of data to identify, or at least indicate, the scale and type of damage faced (or necessary costs incurred) by individual entities in the creative industries as a result of the emergency situation.
We are aware that the emergency situation is ongoing and losses recorded are thus only approximate and may increase. Therefore, if you decide to quantify the damage, we ask that you only include numbers that you can substantiate at the time you complete the survey, for the period up to 10 April 2020 (as we consider that reopening to the public will happen gradually and not all at once).
We are aware that other organisations are conducting their own research and mapping. Our research aims to capture those subjects that do not fall under the umbrella of professional organisations and to map the situation across diverse fields of culture.
We also acknowledge that “the capital city of Bratislava in collaboration with the Bratislava City Foundation” has prepared a survey, which maps the situation specifically in the city of Bratislava and has been collecting data from individuals working in the culture sector and creative industries since 20 March, with the exception of employees of organisations established by the state, region or city. (The city is collecting data through noon on Friday 28 March 2020.)