unisa logo


Australia boasts world-class films, exciting visual and performing arts, tremendously popular writers, and a thriving games industry. We are justly proud of our arts, culture and entertainment community – our country is internationally renowned for its unique cultural style.

The creative industries are big contributors to the Australian economy. In 2011, the total creative industries workforce was 6.2 per cent of total Australian workers. 1 There were:

  • 611,000 people in Australia’s total creative workforce
  • 348,000 people working directly in the creative industries
  • 263,000 people working in creative roles in other industries such as banking, manufacturing and government (‘embedded creatives’) 2

The creative sector contributes over $90 billion a year in turnover to Australia’s economy, and helps generate exports of $3.2 billion dollars annually.3


The creative industries are an integral, massive cornerstone of the global economy. In 2013, they generated US$2,250b of revenues (3% of world GDP) and 29.5 million jobs.

The Asia Pacific region is the largest global market for creative jobs and products; Europe is the second-largest; and North America the third. In 2013 the Asia Pacific region generated:

  • 43 per cent of creative jobs in the world (12.7 million)
  • 33 per cent of the world’s global creative revenue (US$743 billion) 1

The world’s online economy is heavily reliant on the creative industries, in 2013 they contributed US$200b to global digital sales. Digital cultural goods are, by far, the biggest revenue source for the digital economy. Sales in B2C (Business to Consumer) products (ebooks, music, video, games) generated US$66b, and advertising revenues for online media and streaming sites (i.e. YouTube) generated US$22b.

1 Creative Business in Australia, Learnings from the Creative Industries Innovation Centre 2009-2015, page 39
2 Valuing Australia’s Creative Industries - Final Report, CIIC December 2013
3 The Australian Government’s Creative Industries Innovation Centre report, Valuing Australia’s creative Industries (2013)
Cultural Times - The First Global Map of Cultural and Creative Industries – CISAC 2015