Economists and the Arts

Arts Hub Australia — There is still a major task before the arts community to engage not only with government but with business and with individuals to secure greater financial support for the arts. Although they may wish it were otherwise, people in the arts community cannot expect this support ‘as of right’.
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Arts Hub AustraliaCourtesy of the Australia Business Arts Foundation and Saul Eslake, Chief Economist of the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd., we bring you the full text of Mr Eslake’s recent address to a dinner for the Australia-Israel Chamber of Commerce and Australian Business Arts Foundation (South Australian Chapter) on the relationship between economists and the arts — and how business can help our culture.

Given the reputation which economists have nowadays as ‘desiccated calculating machines’1, you may have been surprised to find that any economist is sufficiently interested in the arts to be willing to, or to be invited to, speak to a gathering such as this, let alone to spend part of his time chairing a body such as the Tasmanian Arts Advisory Board.

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Saul Eslake
About the Author
Saul Eslake is Chief Economist of the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd.