I’ve spent today looking up the 2019 Annual Reports of all the Arm’s Length Organisations that DCMS gives grant-in-aid funding to. I’ve put some figures I think are involved in my learning about Who Needs It Less?
I’ve made a Google spreadsheet called DCMS Arm’s Length Orgs snapshot – 2018-2019, and anyone can view with this link. Please tread carefully! THERE MAY BE ERRORS. This is rough work, comments welcome!
These are big numbers. I’ve collated a few different fields per organisation I think are interesting:
- Total income (for that year)
- Total expenditure
- Net income (which may be in the red)
- Fixed assets (which likely include tangible, intangible, heritage, and certain types of investments)
- Current assets (like stocks, debtors or cash)
- Grant-in-aid figure if I could find it in the Annual Report (and there’s a second sheet in the spreadsheet that gets that number per org from a doc I found from Parliament, which is linked as the source)
- Endowment if that figure is noted separately
From this basic by-hand aggregation, you can see stuff like the BBC’s Total Income in 2018 was £4,889,000,000 or National Gallery had the highest Net Income at £15,400,000.
Then I added two % calculations:
- Current Assets as a percentage of the Total Income for that year, and
- Grant-in-aid as a percentage of the Total Income for that year
Now, I’m not stating anything resembling an approach to trying to figure out which orgs to support and how, but, I’m wondering about these two percentage figures… could they be some measure of health or stability? As Frankie rightly commented on my previous post about this, the Fixed Assets held by our great institutions are probably basically irrelevant, since they’re practically priceless. But maybe if you can say something like the Imperial War Museum has Current Assets that could cover about 64% of its annual income, does that get us anywhere? Or that Royal Armouries has 12% coverage from its Current Assets?
What if we look for orgs that have current (or, more fluid) assets that cover less than 20% of their annual income for 2018 and help them first? Or 50%? Better yet, we could filter that list to deliberately favour BAME and LGBT and disabled-led orgs.
What if the government (and our society) is able to seize this moment to actively work against the preferential structures in its own system? It could actively generate assets for littlies. Grant them 1-3 years equivalent to their 2018 income, and give them an endowment equal to the average of the Arm’s Length orgs, which by my rough calculations is 47% of 2018 income in the bank. That would be a reflection of the healthy situation DCMS has built with their Arm’s Length program, would it not?
I thought I’d have a look at NPOs next, poking at that Current Assets idea. It can be enlightening to see who has no wealth, when that’s such a marker of systemic exclusion.
Notes on data creation:
- I’ve left comments on cells if something odd or there’s extra info or detail
- Sources are individual org’s annual reports, linked in Column B
- If there’s an overarching group, I’ve used that number
- Director’s Pay is the total package, salary + pension etc
- DCMS grant in aid is as noted in the annual report
- I’ve basically looked for what appears to be the same numbers across all the annual report documents – that’s mostly the Balance Sheet and Financial Statements
- If I’ve left a cell (or row, in the case of the BBC) blank, that means it’s too hard for me to find or process or put into this structure