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Report says Shanghai lacks public cultural facilities

(Shanghai Daily)

08:19, April 27, 2013

Shanghai ranked first in the country in terms of cultural services per capita, but lagged behind in the number of public cultural service institutes such as museums, libraries and community cultural rooms, according to a report released by a local university.

The city's top ranking per capita was based on a number of measurements, such as number of those employed in cultural activities and spending.

But researchers from Shanghai Normal University said government's expenditure on public cultural services is still too little. In 2012, money spent on public cultural services was 0.56 percent of the total city expenditures in Shanghai, less than one-tenth of the expenditures on education and science.

"The investment is far from enough if Shanghai wants to make it a modern cultural metropolis as the government has planned," said Sun Xun, a professor who led the survey.

The report showed Shanghai ranked fifth from the bottom of 31 provinces, provincial-level cities and autonomous regions in China in terms of the number of public cultural service institutes.

There are nearly 10,000 museums, libraries and other cultural organizations in Shanghai, about half the number of those in southwest China's Sichuan Province, which ranked first, it said.

Sun called for building more community culture rooms so that it will be convenient for residents to attend public cultural activities. He also advocated government funding for private museums to diversify the cultural resources in Shanghai.

Sun especially mentioned it was a pity that a private Chinese sex culture museum was forced to move from Shanghai to Tongli in the neighboring Jiangsu Province in 2004 due to the rising rents.

Liu Daling, a sociologist at Shanghai University and owner of the sex culture museum, set up the museum in 1995 to display exhibits on ancient Chinese sex culture. The museum was once located on Nanjing Road downtown but later moved to suburban Qingpu District to cut expenses before moving again.

"I think both Chinese and foreigners will have interest in having a glimpse of ancient Chinese sex culture. Shanghai, as an open-minded city, has lost such a precious cultural heritage," Sun said.

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