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In 2012, Culture Ministry given responsibility for heritage protection, movement of cultural goods and copyright and tourism.


New Culture Council set up in 2012 aims to support legislation in the cultural field.


State-private partnerships have been suggested as a way to modernise the cultural sector.

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Russia/ 3. Competence, decision-making and administration  

3.2 Overall description of the system

The state is still the main actor in cultural policies in Russia, while executive authorities maintain their key role in the cultural governance structures. The President of the Russian Federation, as the Head of State, appoints the Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation and formulates principles and priorities of national policies in addresses to the Parliament.

He has an advisory body called the Council on Culture and the Arts of the Russian President, established in 1996. Its members are appointed by the Russian President and include prominent cultural administrators, artists and representatives of artists' unions. The Council is to inform the head of the state on cultural and artistic affairs, to provide for interaction with the creative community and cultural organisations, and to assist in the elaboration of the state policy in culture and the arts. The Council also proposes nominees for state awards in literature and the arts, and in humane activities; in 2012, it was also authorised as the Trustee Council for the state TV channel "Kultura". The Council's session of 2012 was dedicated to the issues of contemporary cultural policy, support for innovative initiatives, preservation and use of cultural and historical heritage, prospects for humane and creative development of the younger generations, and advance in the international cultural co-operation. The four inter-governmental commissions were established by the Council, namely for cultural policies, education, heritage, and international co-operation.

The State Duma and the Council of Federation constitute the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation (legislature) that influences federal cultural policy by:

  • elaborating and passing federal legislation, both general (on the market economy, labour, social welfare, etc.) and specific to cultural sector; and
  • adopting the federal budget drafted by the government, including allocations for culture.

There is an advisory Council for State Cultural Policies of the Chairman of the Federal Assembly, designed for analysing policy issues and prospects for its development, together with proposing amendments to legislation on the preservation of the cultures of the peoples in the Russian Federation, on levelling cultural development of different territories and on supporting maecenat activities and sponsorship.

The State Duma members, in co-operation with the Ministry, lobby interests and needs of the cultural sector, its professionals and institutions. There are special Committeesfor culture, for ethnic relations and for information policy, where laws are prepared for parliamentary discussion. Recently, the working group of the Committee for Culture proposed a "Road Map" for cultural policies, which is to use state-private partnerships to resolve existing problems of the sector’s modernisation. In the summer of 2012, the Culture Council was established by the President of the State Duma; the Council aims to support elaboration of legislation in the cultural field.

The Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federationis to provide regulations, to manage state property and to deliver state services concerned with culture, arts, cultural heritage, film, archives, authors' rights and neighbouring rights, and tourism. The Ministry is commissioned to submit draft legal acts for the cultural sector to the government, to put forward a sector proposal for the federal budget, to keep national Registers, Codes and Catalogues, and to analyse juridical practices and the efficiency of cultural policies. It is also responsible for the implementation of the Culture of Russia (2012–2018) Federal Target Programme.

In 2012, the Federal Service for Legal Supervision of Cultural Heritage Preservation was abolished and its functions in heritage protection, supervision of library, archive, and museum collections, control over export, import and circulation of cultural goods, and protection of authors' rights and neighbouring rights have passed to the culture Ministry. The same year, the Ministry was charged with responsibilities in the field of tourism and the Federal Agency for Tourism was passed to Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation. The Agency is to manage state property and deliver state services in the field, to keep the Register of domestic tourist companies and promote tourist products in domestic and foreign markets, to develop state programmes in the field and support small and medium enterprises.

The Coordinating Council for Culture and Arts is a consultative body presided by the culture Minister and provides matching actions of executive authorities at both federal and regional levels. The Council unites federal and regional decision-makers of the cultural sector. Besides, there is the Public Council of the Ministry, which is an advisory body for discussion and expertise on issues that appear on the agenda. The current discussion is dedicated to optimising a structure and activities of the five research institutions that operate under the culture Ministry.

The Federal Archives Agency under the Ministry of Culture provides related state services based on the archive collections and responds to requests of citizens. It is in charge of maintaining national Archives and publication of documents; it keeps a State Register of unique archive items; supervises disclosures and deals with acquisitions. The Federal Agency directly supervises Federal Archives and the bulk of its finance is spent on technical provisions for preservation of its collections (rooms, facilities, copying, etc.). The Council on Archive Affairs of the Federal Service co-ordinates the functioning of the related federal and regional agencies.

In 2008,the Federal Agency for Print and Mass Communications (FAPMC) waswithdrawn from the culture Ministry and placed under the Ministry of Connectivity and Mass Communications. The latter shapes state policies in the fields of information and communication, mass media, print, and personal data processing. The FAPMC is in charge of publishing, press, printing, and all types of media. The Federal Agency is responsible for organising e-media audience measurements, for analysing print media circulation, for reviewing sector developments, for providing the statutory deposit of printed materials and supporting socially important productions. The FAPMC manages collections of national audiovisual (films excluded) and broadcasting productions. It also collaborates with powerful organisations of broadcasters, publishers, and other media actors.

The Federal Service for Supervision in Connectivity and Mass Communications acts under the same Ministry and implements state protection and control in the fields of mass media (e-media included), information technologies and personal data. It licenses broadcasting and audiovisual productions, keeps the national media and related licensing Registers, provides frequency ranging services and give permission on disseminating foreign print media in Russia.

The Ministry for Regional Development was established in 2004 and acquired responsibility for social and cultural issues in the units of the Russian Federation. It is in charge of implementing state policies concerned with national (read inter-ethnic) relations, territorial development, and cross-border co-operation. Its Department for Inter-ethnic Relations supervises issues of ethnic cultural development, inter-ethnic and inter-confessional relations, and Kazak (a particular ethnic and cultural group) affairs. The department provides support for research and sociological reviews on ethnic interactions, for conferences, festivals and forums concerned with ethnic cultures, cultural dialogue and tolerance, for related mass media including e.g. establishment of a special web portal in the languages of the peoples of the Russian Federation.

The Russian Federation incorporates 83 administrative and territorial units (some of which are based on ethnicity), with different political status: Republics, Krais (Provinces), Oblasts (Regions), Autonomous Oblasts, Autonomous Districts and the cities of Moscow and St. Petersburg. Since 2000, these units are additionally clustered into 7 Federal Districts that on occasion provide a framework for bigger cultural projects, e.g. the Competition in Culture and Arts within the Central Federal District. The state structures in the regions generally mirror federal ones and are of primary importance for regional cultural governance. Regional cultural policies differ a lot as regards priorities and resources. The heads of regional cultural administrations are members of the Coordinating Council for Culture presided by the culture Minister. This Counciljoins federal and regional decision-makers to improve and develop the national policy-making process.

In 2005, the Public Chamber of the Russian Federation was established to fill the gap between government, local self-governments, public associations, etc. and to involve them in the decision-making process. Its work is organised within specialised Committees and Commissions, some of which concern cultural matters, namely cultural policies, communication, freedom of speech, cultural and spiritual heritage, inter-ethnic relations, etc. The most effective instruments of its influence are the ability to intervene directly in conflict situations and to advise when developing legislation. Public Chambers were also established in the regions.

Chapter published: 11-04-2013

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