Thu. Jul 18th, 2024

Brussels, 23 June 2023

Today, the Commission presents a report on how citizen participation in cultural activities enhances civic engagement, democracy and social cohesion. In the run-up to the European elections in 2024, international research shows that citizens who participate regularly in cultural activities are more likely to vote, to volunteer, and to participate in community activities, projects, and organisations.

The report recommends that the objective of widening citizens’ cultural participation could be strengthened in the Commission’s own dedicated actions for culture and get a higher visibility in the existing Creative Europe programme. Boosting cultural participation could also be further encouraged through existing EU actions for civic engagement and participation in the EU, such as the Citizens, Equality, Rights and Values programme. The report also highlights the need for more work on this topic as foreseen in the EU Work Plan for Culture 2023-2026, which includes an action on promoting democracy.

Vice-President Margaritis Schinas said: 

“Culture is at the heart of our democratic societies. Participating is shaping the societies we live in. We need to harness this immense power of culture for the democratic health of our societies. This report comes at a very good point in time, and it will contribute to our efforts to deepen democracy and promote an inclusive and engaged society as we support our cultural sectors.”

The report, which also gives guidance for actions at national and local levels, presents evidence that the density of local cultural offer and the volume of available public funding are positively linked to patterns of civic and democratic behaviour. It concludes with key policy lessons and a set of 14 concrete recommendations for policy makers. This report is the result of a study announced in the EU Work Plan for Culture 2019-2022. The report and more information are available here.

Source – EU Commission

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