The adoption of a new Council Work Plan for Culture 2023-2026 is the major overarching priority for culture in the agenda of the Czech Republic. The EU country holds the rotating term at the helm of the Presidency of the Council until the end of 2022.
To be approved by the Culture ministers meeting in the Council at the end of November, the Work Plan for Culture 2023-2026 represents the main roadmap for the coordination of cultural policies at the EU level in the years to come. It is hoped that the new Work Plan for Culture will trigger a paradigm shift to adapt to new normality caused by pandemic, war on the European continent, and threats posed by the climate emergency.
Culture Action Europe is closely following the process leading up to a new Work Plan for Culture. After having been invited to deliver a keynote speech at an informal meeting of the Cultural Affairs Committee of the Council in Paris on 31 May, on 11 July CAE organised a working session bringing together its members from the wider cultural ecosystem and representatives from 15 EU Member States. The meeting was hosted by the Czech Representation to the EU in its premises in Brussels. CAE members, cultural attachés who sit in the Cultural Affairs Committee and representatives of the European Commission discussed key features of the actions needed to be implemented for the cultural and creative sectors to thrive.
The workshop created the space for CAE members to share their insights, engage in a shared dialogue and develop a concrete set of policy recommendations to be included in the new Work Plan. The priorities identified and further developed range from working conditions in the cultural sector to sustainability, from wellbeing to international cultural relations, and from cultural rights to artistic research and education.
As a common pattern for the future Work Plan, the need to bridge the gap with other public authorities at national levels was recurring. Representatives of the cultural sector made the case for joint Presidency conferences that engage the Ministries for Culture, those responsible for Health, Education, Finance and Social Affairs. More and more, also, a coherent EU umbrella strategy for culture bundling together all relevant policy documents is needed, as the Commission highlights in its evaluation report of the current Work Plan 2019-2022.
A more detailed account of the discussion is accessible here. For the French version click here.
In close dialogue with the Member States, Culture Action Europe will continue monitoring the work towards the adoption of the next Work Plan for Culture on the basis of this first exchange.