European Audiovisual Observatory's Financial resources and activities
The European Audiovisual Observatory’s yearly budget finances the activities planned during the year in the annual Action Plan. For 2023 this budget amounts to EUR 3 796 100.
The Budget is mainly funded by members’ contributions, currently 40 states and the European Union are members. Contribution rates are based on a formula which takes into account population and Gross Domestic Product. Major contributors to the budget (France, Germany, Italy, - the United Kingdom and the European Union) all pay the same rate.
The European Audiovisual Observatory's second most important financial resource is the income generated through payments for services provided by the Observatory, including co-financed projects. In practice this happens through reports and information tools, such as databases, commissioned by third parties against financing or co-financing, as well as by hosting services for third parties and by sharing the Observatory’s data, expertise and methodology.
Another established part of the Observatory's yearly budget consists of the credit balance of the last closed and approved financial year.
ADOPTED BUDGET FOR 2023
The work of the Observatory consists predominantly in the gathering and processing of data and information. This core activity is extremely labour intensive and depends on the knowledge and expertise of highly specialised staff. Accordingly, a significant amount of expenditure relates to staff costs (see the corresponding category).
The translation and proofreading of the Observatory’s productions, grouped in the category “external services”, are another major item of expenditure and reflect the cost of having three working languages (English, French and German).
Data purchases supplement the in-house information gathering and make up a significant part of the costs listed under the category “partnership and network”.
The Observatory’s investment in IT services and IT development has been a steadily increasing cost factor over the past decade, which the Observatory has mitigated by reinforcing its IT Unit. The resulting internalisation of strategic projects has allowed the Observatory to regain control over IT developments and maintenance.
The events expenditure (spread over several budget heads, mainly under Marketing) finances the three well-established annual Observatory Conferences: in Cannes during the Film Market, in the country of the Observatory Presidency and in Brussels. Since 2022 the Observatory co-hosts two additional events in the framework of renowned festivals. The first event marks the release of the latest edition of the publication Key Trends during Series Mania in Lille and the second sees the release of the FOCUS on World Film Market Trends during the Cannes Film Market.
The Secretariat of the Observatory draws up the yearly Action Plan in consultation with its Advisory Committee and proposes a first draft supplemented by a budget forecast for discussion to the Executive Council. Taking the comments and wishes of the Executive Council into consideration, the Secretariat conducts further exchanges with the Advisory Committee before submitting a second draft and a detailed budget to the Executive Council for adoption and approval. The Executive Council must adopt the Action Plan, and approve the Budget. The decision on the Budget must be taken unanimously. Furthermore, the approved Budget needs to be adopted (again unanimously) by the Financial Committee of the Observatory. The Financial Committee corresponds to the Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers, but its composition is restricted to representatives of Observatory Member States.
PLANNED ACTIVITIES FOR 2023
As at 05/01/2023
Almost all information and information services are made available free of charge on the Observatory’s (trilingual) website. The following main activities are fully covered by the 2023 Action Plan and Budget.
Publications from the Department of Market Information:
- New edition of its Yearbook Key trends - Television, cinema, video and on-demand audiovisual services - the pan-European picture;
- Top players in the European AV industry: ownership and concentration
- New edition of Focus - World Film Market Trends in the framework of the Cannes Film Market, Marché du Film;
- TV fiction production in Europe;
- Film financing analysis;
- Composition of VOD catalogues;
- Analysis of VOD consumption data;
- Prominence in TVOD catalogues;
- The supply of audiovisual services in Europe;
- Key figures on gender in audiovisual production;
- First indicators on sustainable production; -
- The export of European films;
- Analysis of film funds resources and spendings;
- Screenwriters and directors of European films and TV fiction;
- Compared analysis of the circulation of films.
Publications from the Department of Legal Information:
- Ten issues of the IRIS electronic newsletter on legal developments across Europe;
- Three issue of the IRIS Plus-series on
o Access to and availability of European films and AV content
o Fair remuneration of authors and performers
o Accessibility for people with disabilities;
- Two issues of IRIS Special with in-depth information and the most detailed analysis of major topics most likely focusing on
o Transparency of data, platforms and algorithms accountability (DSA Package)
o Access to and findability of “public value content” on all platforms;
- One IRIS Extra on a topical issue of relevance in non-EU Observatory members-;
- Analysis of the transposition of the AVMSD in EU countries (3 targeted notes);
- Analysis of alignment to AVMSD rules in third party countries in the Creative Europe MEDIA programme;
- The promotion of European works on TV and VOD (pilot publication, first of four parts to be published over four years).
Department of Market Information online e-services and databases:
- Yearbook 2023 - Television, VOD, cinema and video in 42 European states: markets and players, services and usage;
- MAVISE database – on TV channels, on-demand services and licences in Europe. Monthly updates are planned in 2023;
- LUMIERE and LUMIERE PRO databases;
- LUMIERE VOD - directory of European films available on on-demand services in Europe.
Department of legal Information Databases:
- IRIS MERLIN – articles on laws, court and administrative authority decisions and policy documents from over 50 countries of relevance to the audiovisual industry;
- AVMSDatabase – national laws transposing the Audiovisual Media Services Directive (original and revised version) in all EU Member States; updates with regard to secondary legislation.
- The Cannes Film Market conference, focusing on the European Film sector;
- Presidency conference in Lisbon with focus on a topic of particular interest to the host country;
- The conference in Brussels on audiovisual services.
As every year, the Observatory staff will contribute information to conferences, webinars and other events organised by third parties (over 27 contributions in 2022) and engage in assisting with smaller projects and with specific requests from its members. The Observatory will also continue helping to develop a European-wide methodology in the areas of its expertise.