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Belgium/ 3. Competence, decision-making and administration  

3.1 Organisational structure (organigram)

Flemish Community

Since 1 April 2006, the Flemish public administration system has undergone major changes. The main tasks are now organised on the basis of 11 policy areas, one of which is "Culture, Youth, Sports and Media". In principle, one minister would be in charge of each policy area, but this is not always the case. In 2014-2019, two Ministers are responsible for this policy area. One is the Minister for Culture, Youth, Media and Brussels. The Minister for Sports is also responsible for Economy, Work and Innovation.

Just like any other of the 11 policy areas, the policy area for Culture, Youth, Sports and Media consists of:

  • A Policy Council, where politicians and senior officials involved in a specific policy area meet;
  • The Department for Culture, Youth and Media. This consists of different sections and services, including the Museum for Fine Arts in Antwerp, the Strategic Advisory Council SARC and sector-specific sections, for e.g. the Sections ‘Arts’, ‘Cultural Heritage’ and ‘Socio-Cultural Work’. The figure behind this link represents the structure of the Flemish Department of Culture, Youth and Media as a whole.

Immovable heritage belongs to the policy area "Environment". Formal art education comes under "Education and Training".

French-speaking Community of Belgium

General Culture Administration

General Audio-visual and Media Service


General Letters and Books Service

General Cultural Inspectorate Service

General Territorial Action Service

General Artistic Creation Service

General Heritage Service

General Cultural Participation Service


Media and Press Aid Directorate


Letters Directorate

Inspectorate Areas Directorate

Cultural Centres Directorate

Performing arts Directorate

Cultural Heritage Directorate

Continuing Education Directorate

Administrative Support Directorate

Cinema Production Directorate

French Language Directorate

Liège, Namur and Luxembourg Inspectorate Area

Public Reading Directorate

Theatre Directorate

Conservation Service

Youth Directorate

Human Resources Service

Film Selection Commission Service


Regional Languages Service

Hainaut and Brabant Wallon Inspectorate Area

Nivelles Library

Dance Service

Heritage Information Systems Service

International Youth Bureau

Budget and Accounts Service

Cinema Screening and Promotion Service

Youth Literature Service

Brussels Inspectorate Area

Gembloux Public Reading Centre

Circus Service

Valorisation Service

Training Directorate

Infrastructure and Security Service

Wallonie-Bruxelles Images

Book Service

Legal and Financial Support Service

Hannut Public Reading Centre

Music Directorate

Operator Management Service

Creativity and Artistic Practices Service

Non-merchant Employment Service

Transverse Support Service

Royal Academy of French Language and Literature

Transverse Support Service

Libremont Public Reading Centre

Contemporary Plastic Arts Directorate

General PEP’s Delegation

Deaf and Hearing-Impaired Service

Strategic Directorate


Transverse Support Service


Lobbes Central Reserve

Multidisciplinary Projects Service

Film Library Service

Literacy Service

Communication Service




27 September Library

Wallonie-Bruxelles Théâtre Danse

Mariemont Royal Museum

La Marlagne

International Relations Service




Naninne Material Loan Centre

Wallonie-Bruxelles Musique

Transverse Support Service

Transverse Support Service

Creative Europe Media Service




Culture Point Service

Wallonie-Bruxelles Design Mode



IT Unit




Transverse Support Service

Transverse Support Service



Dissemination Directorate








French Community Coordination Unit

The French-speaking Community of Belgium is the French-language body within the Federal State with responsibility for cultural affairs. However, a number of cultural dimensions are handled by other public authorities.

Some cultural affairs fall under the responsibility of the Regions, as follows:

  • Brussels-Capital Region: the Committee of the French Community (Cocof)[1].
  • Walloon Region: General Directorate for Planning, Territory, Housing and Heritage – Department of Heritage: archaeology, protection and restoration of heritage.

The Regions have responsibility for matters of importance to cultural development: the built cultural heritage, tourism, local and regional planning, the development of urban and rural life, social integration, employment, the economy, new technologies and health.

Wallonie-Bruxelles International is the central administration responsible for external relations. This means it works closely with the French-speaking Community of Belgium, Cocof and the Wallonia Public Service.

Provincial and local levels

All the Provinces and many towns and municipalities are developing cultural policies. In some sectors, such as cultural centres and libraries, these policies are agreed between the French-speaking Community of Belgium, the Provinces and the municipalities.

Federal State

The Federal State has retained major cultural responsibilities, namely the big cultural, artistic and scientific institutions, typically based in Brussels: the Royal Institute of Natural Sciences, the Royal Museum of Central Africa, the Royal Museums of Art and History, the Royal Museums of Fine Arts, the Royal Library, the Royal Theatre of La Monnaie, the National Orchestra, the Archives of the Kingdom and the Palais des Beaux-Arts (Bozar).

Other institutions, such as the Cinema Library, the Cinema Museum and Europalia, span two communities.

These big cultural institutions represent the cultural heritage and the Fine Arts and essentially illustrate the cultural conservation function.

The Federal State likewise has competence over a whole string of issues, notably at the legislative level: the status of the artist, copyright, VAT, laws on the cultural pact (protection of ideological and philosophical movements, etc.).

Other big sectors run by the Federal State overlap with cultural aspects: topics such as the policy on cities, equal opportunities (the centre for equal opportunities and the fight against racism), the battle against poverty, and security and society contracts (the Ministry of the Interior), etc.

[1] The Committee of the French Community (Cocof) is a federal body within the Belgian institutional landscape which handles a series of areas closely linked to the everyday lives of the French-speaking residents of  the Brussels Region.

German-speaking Community

The cultural portfolio forms part of the Cultural Affairs Department of the Ministry for the German-speaking Community. In addition to cultural affairs, the Cultural Affairs Department also administers the areas of youth, continuing and adult Education, media, sport, tourism, monument and countryside protection and archaeological excavations.

The culture portfolio encompasses the arts (music, theatre, dance, plastic and visual arts, and literature), cultural centres, museums, historical research, protection and preservation of moveable cultural heritage, folklore, cultural initiatives and projects together with inter-Community and international cooperation.

Certain transversal subject-areas are administered by the general offices of the Ministry, such as infrastructure and certain activities in the area of foreign relations.

Organisational chart

Ministry of the German-speaking Community

General Secretariat

Department for Cultural Affairs

Chapter published: 26-06-2018

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