2022 Update: Mapping the Auckland Funding Ecosystem for Ngā Toi – Culture, Creativity and the Arts - Te Taumata Toi-a-Iwi

2022 Update: Mapping the Auckland Funding Ecosystem for Ngā Toi – Culture, Creativity and the Arts


This report provides an update on the 2021 report ‘Mapping the Auckland Funding Ecosystem for Ngā Toi – Culture, Creativity and the Arts’.

‘Ngā Toi’ is the term used to encompass culture, creativity and art; and to better reflect the way that art, creativity, language and cultural knowledge are understood as an integrated whole that isn’t always captured by the more Western framing of ‘art’.

The aim of the original research was to map the funding ecosystem for Ngā Toi in the Auckland region, to help build understanding about:

  • What outcomes are currently being sought and prioritised by investors in Ngā Toi
  • Funding issues/challenges that may require shared attention in order to address gaps within the investment ecosystem
  • Potential connections and areas of shared priority that may provide a platform for collaboration between funders and a more connected sector investment ecosystem.

The information in this report provides additional information of funding allocations for the financial year 2020/21. It provides an analysis of the investments provided by key funders of Ngā Toi and where possible a breakdown of investment into the Auckland region.

Analysis is prepared for each of the following funders:

  • Auckland Council
  • Creative New Zealand (CNZ)
  • Manatū Taonga Ministry for Culture & Heritage (MCH)

Data was provided by Auckland Council, CNZ and MCH outlining their investment into Ngā Toi. At the time of writing not all funding information was available, and a further iteration of the report is expected to complete funding allocations for 2020/21. It is also important to note that some of the data is based on estimates from the participating organisation, and in some cases, so should be interpreted cautiously.

You can download the full 2022 update report here.

Key Funder: Auckland Council

Auckland Council’s investment into Ngā Toi is provided via Council departments, Local Boards and Council Controlled Organisations (CCOs). Council describes its investments and activities in relation to “arts”, which it defines as “all forms of human creative skill, imagination and interpretive expression, and their various branches including performing arts, visual arts, screen and digital arts, literary arts, and cultural heritage collections”; and “culture”, which it defines as “the values, ideas, customs, attitudes, social behaviours and physical artefacts of a particular people or society, e.g., gaming culture”. These definitions are noted as excluding “sports and recreation, or built and natural heritage” (Auckland Council, 2015, p.6). Data provided by Auckland Council about its investment includes funding for libraries.

Council’s investment into Ngā Toi is guided by Toi Whītiki, the arts and culture strategic action plan, which was developed through research and public and sector consultation. Toi Whītiki was designed in alignment with the Council’s Auckland Plan 2015–2025, Local Board Plans and Māori Plan; and was adopted in 2015. Toi Whītiki identifies the role of the Auckland Council family as supporting arts and culture through:

  • Strategy and policy
  • Facilities (local and regional)
  • Programming and events
  • Investment and funding
  • Regulatory and operative frameworks
  • Facilitation
  • Advocacy

Data provided by Auckland Council for this research enabled detailed analysis of their investment into Ngā Toi in the Auckland region, by department/CCO and by Toi Whītiki outcome area.

Data covers the financial year 2018/19 and 2020/21:

  • 2018/19 data represents investment trends prior to the impacts of COVID-19 and includes approximately $180.8m of investment.
  • 2020/21 data highlights budgetary changes as a result of COVID-19 and includes approximately $181.2m of investment.

The table below provides a summary of Council and CCO investment which was comprised of:

$149.4m of capital and operational invested through:

  • Council departments (Arts, Culture and Events, Public Art, City Centre Activation, Community Empowerment Unit and Libraries)
  • Grants programmes (Regional Arts and Culture Grants Programmes, Local Board Grants)
  • Investment in major cultural institutions (Auckland War Memorial Museum and Museum of Transport and Technology) – some of which is distributed by the Auckland Regional Amenities Funding Board (to Auckland Theatre Company, NZ Opera, Auckland Arts Festival and the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra).

$31.7m of operational investment through CCOs:

  • Tātaki Auckland Unlimited (Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED), Regional Facilities Auckland (RFA) merged on 1 December 2020)
  • Eke Panuku Development.

There are several caveats to note with Auckland Council’s data:

  • Council’s structure has changed between 2018/19 and 2020/21. Therefore, some of the investment data captured in 2018/19 has moved to a new area for 2020/21 and/or new data not captured in the previous year has been provided. This may account for some of the variances and makes direct comparisons between the two years difficult in some instances.
  • The information provided by some teams is an estimate only. This is because some of council’s programmes use arts and culture as a method of achieving positive community outcomes. These teams do not record the actual spend on arts and culture, but rather investment in community outcomes more generally.
  • The method of collecting data may have changed between 2018/19 and 2020/21. In addition, council has received investment data from more teams than were obtained in 2018/19 (for example, the investment in Māori outcomes).
  • Tātaki Auckland Unlimited had an increase in budget from 2018/19 to 2020/21. Auckland Council invested additional funding into this Council Controlled Organisations, to account for the loss in revenue generated as a result of COVID-19 restrictions.
  • Several teams have had a decrease in expenditure. On 30 July 2020 Council adopted the Emergency Budget. This saw a reduction in funding for public art, regional arts and culture grants and arts programming, in response to the challenges of COVID-19.
  • In addition, some teams are likely to see regular fluctuations in expenditure from year to year. For example, the public art team’s expenditure is largely driven by parent project milestones being met, where lower expenditure does not necessarily reflect a reduction in work delivered.
  • While the overall council spend between 2018/19 and 2020/21 has increased slightly, it is worth noting the above caveats around the accuracy of the information and the variations in the way data has been recorded and captured between the two years. This information should therefore be treated as an indication of council’s overall spend, rather than a complete picture.
  • Auckland Council is committed to collating, reporting and continuing to improve the veracity of this investment information to provide transparency about council’s investment and to help us to determine whether our spend is aligned with our strategic objectives.

Table 1: Auckland Council Arts, Culture and Heritage Funding

Council Unit/CCO

Investment focus / key activities

Investment 2018/19

Investment  2020/21

Percentage change (18/19 to 20/21)

Arts, Culture & Events Division

  • Arts programming
  • Arts advisory through funded arts partners
  • Arts & Culture Facilities – this includes council investment in Lopdell House, Te Oro, OMAC, Franklin Arts Centre, Hawkins Theatre, Mangere Arts Centre, Nathan Homestead, Studio One, Papakura Art Gallery and Fresh Gallery Otara and many others
  • Maintenance of arts facilities and the public art collection
  • Mentoring to individual artists (8 Council staff)
    3 Local Board arts advisors


*figure includes staff and depreciation but excludes capex 


▼ -25.7%

Public Art Team

  • Plans, commissions and delivers public art (temporary and permanent)
  • Public art collection maintenance and management
  • Provision of expert advice
  • Mana whenua engagement
  • Work with Auckland Transport to integrate art into large infrastructure projects



▼ -88.2%

City Centre Activation Programme

  • Enhancement of the city centre environs
  • Experiences and events
  • Artist development and capacity building, including future focus on support with COVID recovery


*figure includes investment in Ngā Toi only


─ 0.0%

Community Empowerment

  • Connect community leaders, groups and resources
  • Build community tools, skills and capabilities
  • Support communities to design and run community events
  • Work alongside communities, young people and Local Boards
  • Provide specialist advice on how art could be integrated into placemaking and community development opportunities/plans
  • Regional Community Development Grants
  • Art that tells local stories (e.g. homelessness, dawn raids).


*figure includes combined funding as allocated via Local Boards’ Locally Driven Initiatives Budget 


*figure includes combined funding as allocated via Local Boards’ Locally Driven Initiatives Budget 

▲ 96.7%

Youth Empowerment

  • Youth programmes with art and culture outcomes
  • Local Board youth council spend on arts and culture

Previously reported as ‘Community Empowerment Unit’


Māori Arts and Culture Outcomes

  • Showcase Māori culture to the world
  • Develop cultural narratives
  • Identify sites of significance
  • Develop Marae
  • Support Māori artworks
  • Name local park

Not previously reported


Regional Arts and Culture Grants Programme

  • Contestable grants programme providing three types of grants to arts and culture organisations
  • Strategic Relationship Grants provide multi-year funding for key organisations to assist with their operating costs
  • Audience Development Grants support initiatives that offer audiences a wide range of arts and culture opportunities
  • Business Capacity Grants support artist capacity and business development
  • Provides funding advice and helps to build connections between artists and organisations


*figure includes $0.35m of grants previously committed as multi-year Strategic Relationship Grants


▼ -11.8%

Local Board Grants Programme

  • Local grants programme operated by 20 of 21 Local Boards in the region
  • Each Local Board sets its own grants policies within the parameters of the programme – which has six activity areas including arts and culture
  • Arts and culture advisors assess relevant applications to the programme and use Toi Whītiki to help inform their decisions
  • Council Arts Brokers act as specialist advisors to Local Boards. Brokers often provide funding advice when a Local Board is unable to fund an initiative


*figure represents grants aligned to arts and culture, totalling approximately 9% of the overall spend ($5.4m)


▲ 16.0%

Auckland Council Libraries

  • Operates 55 libraries across the region
  • Book lending
  • Venues for arts and culture events including cultural festivals, hosting writers talks, music performances and art exhibitions
  • Work with local artists, authors, craftspeople, and musicians providing opportunities for them to showcase their work
  • Venues for classes and workshops
  • Manages cultural heritage collections including historic records, music, oral history and Māori and Pacific collections
  • Book lending
  • Venues for arts and culture events including cultural festivals, hosting writers talks, music performances and art exhibitions
  • Work with local artists, authors, craftspeople, and musicians providing opportunities for them to showcase their work
  • Venues for classes and workshops







▲ 2.0%

▼ -29.4%

Major Cultural Institutions and Auckland Regional Amenities Funding Board (ARAF)*

  • CCO Governance & External Partnerships manages the relationship between Council and its CCOs
  • Ngā Toi investment 2018/19 included funding to ($56.5M):
  •  Auckland War Memorial Museum
  • Museum of Transport and Technology (MOTAT)







▲ 1.2%

▲ 2.5%

▼ -0.7%

*Administered through CCO Governance & External Partnerships

  • Auckland Regional Amenities Funding Board ($10M) distributed to:
  • Auckland Arts Festival Trust
  • Auckland Theatre Company
  • Auckland Philharmonia Trust
  • NZ Opera











*Auckland Philharmonia Trust – Less amount paid directly to consultants re APO (-$75,000).  The Funding Board paid $75,000 directly to consultants engaged to do work as signalled in the 2019-20 Funding Plan.

─  0.0%

─  0.0%

─  0.0%

─  0.0%

─  0.0%

Tātaki Auckland Unlimited*

ATEED and RFA merged on 1 December 2020, as a merged entity all future updates are to be recognised as Tātaki Auckland Unlimited.

Purpose: Enriching cultural and economic life in Tāmaki Makaurau

  • CCO responsible for creative sector economic development, regional arts, environment, sport and events
  • Major arts and cultural festivals
  • Development of creative precincts and spaces
  • Screen programmes
  • Attracting international productions and issuing production permits
  • Skills and talent pipeline development
  • Manages and operates 13 landmark venues and over 16,000 artworks (includes public art works, Auckland Art Gallery Toi Tamaki collection and New Zealand Maritime Museum collection)
  • Delivers a programme of exhibitions, performances and events
  • Provides free and subsidised community use of venues
  • Provides free access to content through the Aotea Square digital stage
  • Partners with smaller organisations in the sector to provide advice and content
  • In addition to Auckland Council funding, Tātaki Auckland Unlimited received external revenue of $83m, which contributes to their charitable purposes and community value delivered as a CCO.
  • $86.3m of operational funding was provided by Auckland Council to Tātaki Auckland Unlimited in 2020/21; of which $29.19m is specifically identifiable as investment into Ngā Toi:
    – Auckland Art Gallery Toi ō Tamaki ($8.55m)
    – NZ Maritime Museum ($2.04m)
    – Arts, Events and Entertainment including Auckland Live and Major Events $18.6m
    The remainder of the $57.11m funding may also benefit Ngā Toi,
    but this is difficult to quantify exactly and has been excluded from the total.

Similarly – $50.5m capital expenditure by Tātaki Auckland Unlimited can be identified in 2020/21; some of which may benefit Ngā Toi, but this is difficult to quantify exactly and has been excluded from the total.



*Note this figure and information related to the company (ATEED) only


*Note: This Figure relates to charitable trust only.


  • Tātaki Auckland Unlimited – Auckland Art Gallery Toi ō Tamaki ($8.55m)
  • Tātaki Auckland Unlimited – NZ Maritime Museum ($2.04m)
  • Tātaki Auckland Unlimited – Arts, Events and Entertainment ($18.6m)

▲ 39.0%

Eke Panuku

  • CCO responsible for urban regeneration in Auckland, through regeneration and management of council’s commercial properties and spaces
  • Arts and culture investment and activity is primarily delivered through Panuku Development’s Placemaking Team
  • Waterfront mahi toi also included
  • Ensures public art is incorporated into town centre regeneration
  • Curates regular arts and culture experiences for Aucklanders in public places (e.g., Silo Park)
  • Provides mentoring and capacity building of artists
  • Partners with local artists through Council Art Brokers and Council Public Art team


*figure represents Placemaking Team’s art and culture investment


*figure represents Placemaking investment across the region ($1.346m) as well as key mahi toi works within the Wynyard Quarter ($1.2m)

▲ 108.3%

Figure 1: The diagram below provides a visual summary of Council investments into Ngā Toi in the financial year 2020/21

Key funder:Creative New Zealand

Creative New Zealand (Arts Council of New Zealand Toi Aotearoa) is a Crown entity that acts as the national arts development agency. Creative New Zealand (CNZ) is funded by the Government via the Ministry for Culture and Heritage and the Lottery Grants Board.

CNZ’s purpose is “to encourage, promote and support the arts in New Zealand for the benefit of all New Zealanders” (CNZ,n.d.); which it does through a set of deliverables, namely developing the arts, advocating for the arts, leadership in the arts and investing in the arts. CNZ’s work also is guided by a number of key strategies and policies – including its Investment Strategy, Te Hā o Ngā Toi Māori Arts Strategy, Pacific Arts Strategy Advocacy Strategy and Diversity in the Arts Policy.

CNZ identifies six strategic outcome areas for its work, including its investment activity: 

Stronger arts: 

  • High-quality New Zealand art is developed 
  • New Zealand arts gain international success.

Greater public engagement with the arts: 

  • New Zealanders participate in the arts
  • New Zealanders experience high-quality arts.

Stronger arts sector: 

  • New Zealand’s arts sector is resilient
  • New Zealand arts are valued and supported.

CNZ further identifies that delivering to these outcomes helps create the following “value for New Zealanders” (i.e., long-term impact): 

  • Engagement in the arts improves the lives of New Zealanders
  • Distinctive and dynamic New Zealand arts that reflect the diversity of who we are and grow our reputation as a creative nation
  • Engagement in the arts strengthens whānau, communities and society
  • The arts sector contributes to prosperous and resilient communities (CNZ, 2019).

CNZ administers a wide range of funds – each with a different focus and scale, and with different eligibility criteria, policies and processes. The majority of funding is distributed through CNZ’s major investment client programmes – Toi Tōtara Haemata and Toi Uru Kahikatea. The two programmes provide multi-year funding (two to six years) to artists, arts practitioners and arts organisations to support continuous programmes of activity and ongoing infrastructure. The focus of these funding programmes is strongly aligned to CNZ’s Investment Strategy Te Ara Whakamua 2018-2023 (CNZ, 2018), which identifies three investment focus areas or features (see table below). Investment clients are further able to access funds and other support focused on capability development and international initiatives.

Table 2: Creative NZ funding priorities

Diversity and Reach

Maintain and develop:

  • Investment in a range of arts practices reflecting New Zealand’s growing diversity
  • Investment that ensures communities across New Zealand can participate in and experience the arts, and investment that engages with under-represented communities
  • Investment that engages with new audiences, in New Zealand and internationally
  • Investment in the delivery of art through digital channels in order to increase arts participation and audience size
  • Investment aligned with international opportunities that expand arts practices and demand for New Zealand arts

Dynamic Arts

Maintain and develop: 

  • Investment that supports innovation in New Zealand arts practice
  • Investment in the development of New Zealand arts, in New Zealand and internationally

Resilient Arts Sector

Maintain and develop: 

  • Investment that supports capability and capacity building in organisations and the arts sector for long-term benefit, including new ways of working and new models of value creation that drive resilience
  • Investment that demonstrates relevance to current and changing communities

Data provided by CNZ for this research enabled detailed analysis of funding awarded to initiatives delivered in the Auckland region4, referenced by CNZ funding programme, art form and outcome area.

  • In the financial year 2018/19, $12.9m funding was invested into initiatives in the Auckland region across 224 grants – which represents 27% of the total national investment ($47.9m).
  • In the financial year 2019/20, CNZ’s funding to initiatives in the Auckland region increased to $19.8m across 1,441 grants – representing 28% of CNZ’s national investment (national investment increased by 47% to $70.2m). This increase in funding in Auckland was due to the Emergency Relief funding of just under $4.5m to practitioners/organisations based in the Auckland region.
  • In the financial year 2020/21 CNZ’s funding to initiatives in the Auckland region increased to $22.8m – representing 28% of CNZ’s national investment (which increased by 14.5% to $80.4m). While Emergency Relief funding dropped from $4.5m from 2019/20 to $10k in 2020/21, investment client funding increased by 38% from $8.6m to $11.9m.

It should be noted because of the way data was collected it is only an estimation of CNZ’s investment in each programme.

A more detailed breakdown can be found in the tables below:

Table 3: Distribution of CNZ funding

Council Unit/CCO

National Investment  

Auckland Investment

% of National Investment  

Investment 2018/19 




Investment 2019/20




Investment 2020/21




% change (19/20 to 20/21)

▲ 14.5%

▲ 15.2%


Table 4: Detailed distribution of CNZ funding in Auckland region

Funding Programme





% change (19/20 to 20/21)

Toi Tōtara Haemata

Toi Uru Kahikatea 

Key other investment client funds

Investment client programme provides 2-6 years funding for outcomes in the CNZ investment strategy (to achieve: diversity and reach, dynamic arts, and a resilient arts sector)


Core programme; Contract Extensions; Partnership Incentive Fund; Innovation Fund 









▲ 54.7%

▲ 12.1%

Arts Continuity Grants 

Support for short-term arts projects, or the stages of a project, that can be delivered within a changed and evolving environment as a result of COVID-19

Equivalent of arts grants but focused on COVID-19 relief – producing work under COVID circumstances


COVID-19 Emergency Relief Grants (1)

A contribution toward loss of income for eligible artists and arts practitioners, who may be part of arts organisations (including groups and collectives), who were experiencing devastating loss of income and opportunity and an uncertain future, and who had received the Government’s COVID-19 Wage Subsidy



▼ -99.8%

Creative Communities Scheme

Funding to city and district councils to support local arts projects.




▲ 18.2%

Arts Grants

Short-term project funding for New Zealand artists, arts practitioners, and arts organisations (including groups and collectives) to enable more sustainable careers, encourage innovation and the development of arts practice, and provide opportunities for diverse communities to access the arts. This includes quick response grants.




▲ 294.4%

Toi Rangatahi Funds

Includes Leadership fund, Engagement fund and Participation fund. Supports arts projects for young people aged 15-25 in under-represented communities




▲ 200.0%

Auckland Diversity Project

Supports projects that increase arts attendance and participation by Māori, Pacific and Asian communities in the Auckland Region. It also supports art projects for, by and with artists from those communities


Fundraising for the Arts – Staff Placements Fund

Selected arts organisations can apply for funding towards the salary costs of a fundraising staff placement. Support for organisations based in the Auckland region and Northland is through a partnership between Creative New Zealand and Foundation North



Other Programmes
(funding programmes with under $100k p.a. distribution) (2)

McCahon Centenary; Suffrage 125 Fund; New Work to Asia Fund; Arts Pasifika Awards; Prime Minister’s Award for Literature; Te Waka Toi Awards; Pacific Arts Fono; Internships; Te Ha ; International Indigenous Artform Exchange; Active Engagement Programme; Asia Artform Exchange Research Fund; Transition Fund; Professional Development Grants; Capability Building; Organisational Development Goals; International Strategic Coaching; International Strategic Coaching; Digital Strategy Initiative; Diversity Action Coaching; Sponsorship Development Initiative; International Art Fairs Fund; Transition Funding
Please list any new programmes here that meet this criteria i.e. under $100k p.a.




▼ -85.7%

Capability Fund


Revenue Generation Fund


Pasifika Festivals Fund



Investment in Auckland region




▲ 15.6%

Figure 2: The diagram below provides a visual summary of CNZ investment in the financial year 2020/21 and breakdown of how funding was distributed in Auckland by funding programme. Some programmes have been clustered – particularly the investment client programmes and other smaller funds where the total distributed each year is under $100,000.

Note: This figure does not include the number of grants made through the Creative Communities Scheme

Figure 3: The diagram below provides a visual summary of changes in CNZ funding overall and Auckland programme funding in the financial year 2018/19, 2019/20 and 2020/21.

Key Funder:Manatū Taonga Ministry for Culture & Heritage

Manatū Taonga – Ministry for Culture and Heritage (MCH) is the government ministry responsible for Ngā Toi advice, policy, legislation and investment. MCH also directly delivers a range of initiatives “aimed at enhancing New Zealand’s rich and diverse culture and heritage” and manages a range of web-based tools and resources. MCH also administers Crown funding.

Te Tahua Whakamarohi i te Rāngai Ahurea – Cultural Sector Regeneration Fund:

Announced in May 2020, the Regeneration Fund comprises three cross-sector initiatives with a longer-term focus:

  • The Cultural Sector Capability Fund
  • The Creative Arts Recovery and Employment (CARE) Fund
  • The Cultural Sector Innovation Fund.

Collectively, these three initiatives had a total value of $150 million over three years in support for the cultural sector to create new employment and skill development opportunities, promote innovation and enhance New Zealanders access to inspiring cultural experiences.

An additional $121 million will be provided through Manatū Taonga in financial years beyond 2020/21 to support the sector through the impacts of Omicron.

The table below shows information that was available for funding distributed through Manatū Taonga for the financial year 2020/21, at the time this research was undertaken. The table does not include funding that was awarded but not yet distributed. Funding that was awarded in the period and distributed in the following financial year, will be represented in the 2021/22 report.

No funding was awarded from the Cultural Sector Innovation Fund in the period, funding from this Fund will be included in the 2021/22 report.

At the time of writing there was no available data for funding allocations to crown entities and minor grant funding programmes for the financial year 2020/21 for the Auckland region. Because of the limited information no diagrammatic representation of funding has been made.

Key funder:Creative New Zealand

Table 5: MCH distribution of Cultural Sector Regeneration Fund 2020/21

Te Tahua Whakamarohi i te Rāngai Ahurea /
Cultural Sector Regeneration Fund

All initiatives

Further breakdown: 

Te Tahua Whakahaumaru

  • Creative Arts Recovery and Employment (CARE) Fund

Te Tahua Whakakaha

  • Cultural Sector Capability Fund

National 2020/21


National 2020/21



Auckland Region 2020/21


Auckland Region 2020/21



Auckland’s % of funding


Auckland’s % of funding




  1. Covid-19 Emergency Relief Grants were allocated in the period ending 30 June 2020 with a small number finalised in July 2020.
  2. A decrease is due to the reallocation of funding across funding programmes to meet the immediate needs of the sector impacted by COVID-19.