The Greens - European Free Alliance
Positioning culture at the heart of the European project :
solidarity, cooperation and complementarities
Le texte reproduit ici est soumis à copyright et son téléchargement et utilisation est destiné uniquement à un usage privé.
Ferdinand Richard speaks
Head, Culture Committee of the French Greens, former President of Culture Action Europe
Introduction - What stakes for cultural ecology ?
Far from being a decorative element, Culture is a key factor of strategic balance, whose development and interaction with other policies has to be anticipated, as already stated in the 1972 Declaration of Arc-et-Senans.
Yet, in Europe, the different levels of cultural policies are often antagonists and remain a juxtaposition of private preserves closely watched by nation-states and local powers.
The Greens/EFA thus has a role to play in this since its doctrine is based on the three following concepts :
Biodiversity, linked to cultural diversity and democratic pluralism ;
The "systemic principle", implying human-wide networks and decentralization ;
The right to experiment.
These concepts must now ensure the best possible complementarities between the three following levels : local territories as territories of experimentation and practices ; states as guarantors of the cultural right and cultural financing ; Europe as a space of networks and cultural synergies, within the continent and towards the rest of the world.
Three suggestions for the future
Planning cultural development and the diverse forms of public intervention which support it is a difficult thing to do, since culture is intrinsic to any societal project. Future may depend on the balance between two antagonisms :
Everything is culture - and the French Greens once supported the idea of setting up a cultural referent in all Ministries.
The reverse proposition : Culture touches everything - so why not putting a referent for each policy in all cultural affairs Directorate ?
Although these proposals are obviously unfeasible, these two approaches should be borne in mind when discussing transversality of culture in public policies.
Culture should lie at the very basis of all politics, but this cannot hide the specific problems undermining the artistic sector.
Transversality of culture in public policies does not only affect the modes of financing culture but also the way cultural policies are taught. A current problem is that, in most cases, cultural management training is still based on a very classical conception of cultural policies.