New report assesses the increasing significance of creative skills for the renewal of economic structures and growth.
From 1 January 2013 the new Arts Promotion Centre Finland will replace the former Arts Council of Finland.
4.1 Main cultural policy issues and priorities
indicators and evaluations. In more general terms, management issues seem to outnumber value issues. One reason for that might be the strategy activities of the Ministry of Education and Culture: evidence is needed to support chosen policy alternatives. Besides multiple sector strategies for the Ministry's own use, there have been strategies for overall cultural policy, the latest reaching up to 2020 and visions even for 2035. http://www.minedu.fi/export/sites/default/OPM/Julkaisut/2010/liitteet/OKM04.pdf?lang=fi
The Ministry carried out in 2010-2011 a process of preparing a green paper, "Report on the Future of Culture", which was then presented to Parliament to be discussed and affirmed. The Culture Committee of Parliament gave a positive response and the main proposals of the paper were approved by Parliament. http://www.minedu.fi/export/sites/default/OPM/Julkaisut/2011/liitteet/OKM08.pdf?lang=fi
At the same time, the Ministry prepared a draft law which proposed the dissolving of the present national Arts Council system and establishing in its place another organisation named "Arts Promotion Centre Finland" (Taiteen edistämiskeskus). Instead of an expert body, the new organisation was to be of a central agency type with a centralised but light organisational structure and well-functioning and receptive information system. Understandably, this draft law caused a lot of commotion among professional organisations of artists and cultural workers and caused a lively debate in the press. After almost two years of debate the Parliament of Finland finally passed the bill establishing the new promotion centre in November 2012, to be inaugurated on 1 January 2013.
The task of the centre is to promote the arts on both the national and international levels, as well as to promote aspects of culture that are not covered by any other official body. The centre will function as an expert body under the Ministry of Education and Culture. The Arts Promotion Centre comprises a Central Arts Council (Taideneuvosto) and the following expert bodies that decide on the awarding of grants and awards: national arts councils, regional arts councils and two separate boards. The Arts Promotion Centre will be headed by a director appointed by the Ministry of Education and Culture for a set term not exceeding five years. The centre will also have regional offices. The Central Arts Council will be appointed by the Ministry of Education and Culture and it will play an important role as the ministry's advisory body in policymaking regarding the arts. The number of national arts councils will range from seven to ten, while the number of regional arts councils will remain unchanged at thirteen. The arts councils will decide on the awarding of grants and awards on the basis of peer reviews. The arts councils will also provide expert advice in the strategic work of the Arts Promotion Centre.
As a part of its strategic development work, the Ministry of Education and Culture carried out a cultural policy indicator project. The project was conducted jointly with Statistics Finland and Cupore, the Finnish Foundation for Cultural Policy Research. The project produced in 2009 an interim report "Effectiveness indicators to strengthen the knowledge base for cultural policy" (published in English in 2011). http://www.minedu.fi/export/sites/default/OPM/Julkaisut/2011/liitteet/OKM16.pdf?lang=fi
The recommendations of the project will certainly be put in use, as the Finnish ministries are obliged to present effectiveness indicators for the state budgeting processes and for the state closed accounts reports.
Another reason for enhanced interest in management topics and related statistics and indicators has been the adoption of a new policy perspective emphasising the central role of creative industries in enhancing international trade, economic growth and employment opportunities. This perspective has been put into practice by research and development activities. Development projects have been financed within the framework of the Ministry of Education and Culture's programme aiming at enhancing entrepreneurship, business growth and internationalisation of creative industries. This national programme in turn was – and still is – financed within the framework of the EU Structural Funds programme 2007-2013 (ESF). The projects, varyingly 10-20 at a time, have been scattered regionally around Finland and have mainly municipalities and local organisations and companies as the main third source of funding. Since 2008 they have been co-ordinated by Creative Industries Finland, which is located at the Aalto University in Helsinki. http://www.creativeindustries.fi. See also chapter 8.1.