Feasibility study on a future European Music Observatory

Together with 11 other European music organisations, Live DMA is part of the advisory board of the feasibility study investigating a possible future full-scale establishment of a data collection organisation called The Observatory as a core strategic resource to drive relevance and value for future policy actions in the music portfolio and across the sector. This feasibility study in conducted by KEA and Panteiaand the final report is expected in September 2019.

It will focus on the scope of the future Observatory (what data has it to cover), onidentifying gaps in data availability and on costs and organisational bases of a credible Observatory function. It will also explore the existing funding possibilities available in Europe on local, national and transnational/European levels and identify the gaps of those funding programmes. The feasibility study will take into account the longer-term potential for the Observatory to undertake activities including but not limited to:

  • Appraising existing patterns and potential of cross-border circulation of artists and repertoire, identifying relevant methodologies to update, change or extend, as appropriate, the 2012 study commissioned by European Music Office and Eurosonic Noorderslag.
  • Evaluating the health and sustainability of the live music sector across different territories, identifying the opportunities and threats that can be most effectively addressed through intra-sectoral and transnational collaboration.
  • Analyzing education and training needs (including sub-sectoral features) and existing provisions outside formal education for early career music sector professionals.
  • Working to improve comparability of national data sets relating to industry scale, value and investment. This will support sectoral advocacy efforts and create the conditions within which more appropriate and effective policy interventions can be developed.

The Advisory Board functions as a stakeholder consultation tool, a quality control mechanism and as a tool to support a harmonised approach. Live DMA wants to highlight a few very important points that need more attention :

  • The questions of data ownership and data accessibility.
  • The practical use to the music sector: what flexibility for the Observatory? How to think the Observatory in a bilateral relationship with the sector, serving its needs? 
  • What continuity? Will the Observatory work on ‘one-shot’ data collection, or isn’t it a goal to conduct yearly collection to be able to analyse the evolution of the sector. 

This feasibility study is part of the Music Moves Europe preparatory actions.