2.2 National definition of culture
The Preamble of the Estonian Constitution of 1992 states "the preservation of the Estonian nation and culture" among the main functions of the independent state. In a similar vein, the Ministry of Culture's developmental plan for 2011-2014 starts by stating the mission of the Ministry "to support the maintenance and sustainability of the Estonian national cultural space", which is said to be "a far larger concept than creative arts and folk culture only. It is the living space of Estonian-ness, along with its every component and attribute". Further on, it defines national identity as "joint cultural belonging" and stresses the need for handing over the nation's cultural "values, traditions, behavioural patterns and elements of life style" to the next generations and to "recent immigrants". Largely due to its important role in nation- and identity-building processes, cultural life has been able to establish itself as a visible policy area. The prevailing definition of national culture has also been instrumental in offering a certain guarantee of financial stability.