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Intercultural dialogue

What is it about?

Intercultural dialogue is, essentially, the exchange of views and opinions between different cultures.

Unlike multiculturalism, where the focus is on the preservation of separate cultures, intercultural dialogue seeks to establish linkages and common ground between different cultures, communities, and people, promoting understanding and interaction. 

Why is it needed?

With 28 Member States and even more cultural groupings and identities within the European Union, intercultural dialogue is essential for avoiding conflict and the marginalisation of citizens on the basis of their cultural identity. 

What has been done so far?

The Commission has undertaken and supported a variety of initiatives to support intercultural dialogue, notably through the Platform for Intercultural Europe and the Culture Programme.

One core area of activity over the past several years has been intercultural dialogue with the Roma community; one of Europe's largest minorities. In addition to a variety of projects and initiatives, the Commission has a dedicated platform for tackling discrimination against Roma people

What are the next steps?

The Creative Europe programme will continue to offer scope for activities within the EU and beyond, aimed at promoting intercultural dialogue.

In addition to this, a group of experts appointed by Member States has been formed. This group is exchanging practices on how to create spaces in public arts and cultural institutions to facilitate exchanges among cultures and between social groups.

Its report will highlight good practices and challenges, as well as proposals for concrete action.