The Programme Culture: towards a European cultural area
Since the Traity of Maastricht, European
support for cultural cooperation took a variety of forms: initial
experimental actions carried out by the Commission were followed, between
1996 and 1999, by three sectoral programmes (Kaleidoscope,
Raphael and Ariane) covering the performance and visual arts, cultural
heritage, and literature and reading.
Between 1990 and 2000, more than 12,000 operators were associated with
the 2,500 cultural projects supported by the EU.
With the Programme Culture framework programme, instituted for five years (2007-2013) on
the basis of the new Article
151 of the Maastricht Treaty and prolonged
until the end of 2013, the EU strengthens its support for cultural action..
The aim is to encourage cooperation in order to contribute to the establishment
of a common cultural area for Europeans, to develop artistic and literary
creation, to promote the knowledge of European history and culture and
their international distribution, and to develop heritage sites and collections
of European importance as well as intercultural dialogue and social integration.