2.3 Cultural policy objectives
Since Estonia's participation in the European Programme of National Cultural Policy Reviews in 1995/6, the Council of Europe priorities in cultural policy have been well-known and accepted. Official reference to them is being made, e.g., in the Developmental Plans of the Ministry of Culture (see also chapter 4.1). Support for identity, and the openness for cultural influences from other parts of the world, support for creativity and concern for participation in cultural life have all become a part of Estonian cultural policy. At the same time, the present stress on culture as an identity-building factor and on the preservation of the institutional structure of cultural life has not supported other aspects of the principles of diversity and decentralisation. One could, of course, argue that the small size of the Estonian society (in 2012, 1 294 455 inhabitants) sets some natural limits to any efforts towards decentralisation. In general, the principal outlines of cultural policy have been formulated in discussion with a large amount of experts and professional institutions. This can also be seen as a strategy of mobilising the public to defend the share of culture in the overall state budget. Presently (March 2013), the most comprehensive document stating the objectives of cultural policy still is the document Foundations of the Cultural Policy of the Republic of Estonia, adopted by the Parliament in 1998. Drafting a new, more up-to-date document has started (see also chapter 4.1).