Inter-ministerial cooperation is difficult within the Irish model of government, as it requires a transfer of functions order. The Taoiseach, as head of Government (Article 13, Constitution), is responsible for the allocation of functions between Ministers, and for the overall organisation of the government. Arts education policy presents an example of significant attempts at intergovernmental cooperation between government departments, namely the Department of Education and the Arts Council or Department of Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht. There have been numerous cross-departmental committees established from as far back as the 1970s that have produced forward thinking guidelines and recommendations on arts education that were largely ignored by the Department of Education. More recently, action has been taken based on the recommendations of much earlier reports. This suggests a lack of transversal cooperation.
Recent success in transversal cooperation can be seen in the results of some of the Creative Ireland initiatives. This sub division of the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media has cross-government policy goals working with the Department of Education, Arts Council, local authorities, and other agencies. The Creative Schools initiative, while underfunded, has achieved some success in developing creative champions in local schools.
The 1% for Arts initiative allows for 1% of budgets on public works to be invested in arts. This includes public works from any department and therefore requires cooperation between departments, local authorities and agencies. This initiative involves an inter-agency group working with the Arts Council.