Based on an in-depth survey of 13,000 incorporated not-for-profit organizations, the National Survey of Nonprofit and Voluntary Organizations (NSNVO) provides substantial information about revenues, staffing, volunteers and problems in incorporated nonprofit organizations. Of an estimated 161,000 incorporated nonprofit organizations in Canada, 13,770 are involved in the arts and culture, representing 8.5% of the total. Total revenues of these arts and culture organizations amounted to $3.4 billion, or 3.1% of all nonprofits. Arts and culture organizations have average revenues of $249,000, ranking the sector 12th among the 14 nonprofit sectors examined in the report and closest to the average revenues of environmental organizations ($256,000).
In terms of revenue sources, the 13,770 arts and culture organizations are estimated to receive 28% of their revenues from government, 50% from earned sources, 17% from gifts and donations, and 5% from other income sources. Compared with other nonprofits, arts and culture organizations receive much lower funding from government (28% for arts and culture vs. 49% for all nonprofits), much higher revenues from earned sources (50% for arts and culture vs. 35% for all nonprofits), slightly higher revenues from gifts and donations (17% for arts and culture vs. 13% for all nonprofits) and roughly similar revenues from other sources (5% for arts and culture organizations vs. 3% for all nonprofits). Once again, the structure of arts and culture organizations' revenues is closest overall to those of environmental organizations (27% government, 44% earned, 23% gifts and donations, and 6% other revenues).
In terms of human resources, 46% of all incorporated nonprofits reported having paid employees. Only 37% of arts and culture organizations reported having paid staff, a level that places the arts and culture 11th among the 14 nonprofit sectors and similar again to environmental organizations (31% of which have paid staff). The total number of paid staff in arts and culture organizations amounted to 73,000, or 3.6% of the 2 million employees in all nonprofit organizations.
Regarding volunteers, the study indicates that "nonprofit and voluntary organizations report a combined volunteer complement of over 19 million that contribute more than 2 billion hours of volunteer time, or the equivalent of more than 1 million full-time jobs." Arts and culture organizations reported a volunteer complement of 933,000, with almost 200 million hours volunteered.
Finally, the NSNVO asked nonprofit organizations about 19 different problems they might encounter in the areas of volunteers, paid staff, finances, planning, development, demand for services, infrastructure, and relationships with other organizations. Very high percentages of arts and culture organizations indicated that they have difficulty: obtaining funding from government, foundations or corporations (70%); planning for the future (67%); and recruiting the type of volunteers the organization needs (64%). Overall, a large number of arts and culture organizations reported problems in all possible areas examined in the survey. In fact, the percentage of arts and culture organizations reporting problems was higher than the percentage of all nonprofits reporting problems in 18 of the 19 different problem areas.