2.3 Cultural policy objectives
Within the broader framework of the cultural objectives pursued by the Italian Constitution – heritage and landscape protection, cultural development, pluralism and freedom of expression (see chapter 1 and chapter 5.1.1) - the following more detailed objectives for government action are defined by Leg. Decree 368/1998, by which the new Ministry of Heritage and Cultural Activities was created:
Although there is no automatic correlation of these objectives with the cultural policy principles of the Council of Europe – promotion of identity and diversity, support to creativity – objective 1 appears to be strictly connected with identity issues, whereas objectives 3, 4 and 5 are mainly related to creativity issues. On the other hand, the other two more socially relevant cultural policy principles of the Council of Europe – i.e. diversity and participation in cultural life –have not been mentioned by Decree 368 among the Ministry's objectives.
As far as participation in the field of heritage is concerned, though, it should be noted that Article 6 of the subsequent, basic legislation rationalising heritage matters, the Heritage and Landscape Codex (delegated decree 42/2004: see chapter 5.3.3) clarifies that the "valorisation" of heritage should include both its "protection" and "the guarantee of the best possible conditions for its public utilisation and enjoyment". Actions aiming at fully enacting Article 6 are presently carried out by the new DG for the Valorisation of Cultural Heritage (see chapter 4.2.2).
On the other hand, the goal of promoting diversity in cultural life as a whole has not yet become a priority for our national cultural policy (see chapter 4.2.7). There is still a delay in pursuing strategies to overcome the country's enduring social and geographical cultural imbalances, as well as in acknowledging the potentially relevant role of culture in fostering social cohesion and mutual understanding in an increasingly multicultural society. It is no coincidence that, unlike in other countries, no administrative units within the ministry responsible for culture are entrusted with promoting cultural integration and more in general the cultural rights of the over five million foreign residents who have settled in Italy over the last decades (see chapter 4.2.4).