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The units

At the heart of the Directorate General for Education and Culture, two units collaborate closely to promote culture in Europe.

Culture policy and intercultural dialogue unit

The unit ‘Culture policy and intercultural dialogue’ sets out new approaches for cultural involvement with a view to giving culture a more prominent role in the European Union. As part of this, the unit is charged with implementing the European agenda for culture, as approved by the Council in November 2007, which has three main objectives:

  • The promotion of cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue;
  • The promotion of culture as a catalyst for creativity, within the framework of the Lisbon strategy; and,
  • The promotion of culture as a vital part of the EU’s external relations.

In order to achieve these aims, Member States are working together through the ‘Open Method of Co-ordination’. The unit also engages in a structured dialogue with the culture sector, notably through three thematic platforms.

“Culture” programme and actions unit

The main task of this unit is to put into effect the Culture Programme (2007-2013) in co-operation with the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency. This programme finances hundreds of projects promoting the transnational mobility of cultural actors, encouraging the transnational flow of art works and of cultural and artistic products, as well as encouraging intercultural dialogue. Through this programme, the unit also manages the “European Capitals of Culture” scheme and European prizes in the field of culture, notably for cultural heritage, contemporary architecture, literature and contemporary music. In addition, the unit liaises with the Cultural Contact Points charged with promoting the Culture Programme in the participating countries.