EU education and youth policy - culture aspects

European Union
EU institutions and Member States.
Key objectives of the measure:

In the framework of the new European Skills Agenda, the Commission is now reviewing the initial definition of the Key Competence n°8, Cultural Awareness and Expression: "the appreciation of the importance of the creative expression of ideas, experiences and emotions in a range of media, including music, performing arts, literature, and the visual arts."


The Commission is also exploring the description of the competence and the related knowledge, skills and attitudes, bearing in mind that culture is multifaceted and that there are multiple ways to train cultural awareness and expression.

Scope of the measure:
Nature of the measure:
Main feature of the measure:

In 2014-2015 a group of around 25 Member States worked on the 8th Key Competence  "cultural awareness and expression", following a transversal approach, with representatives of both the education and culture sectors.


They produced a Handbook for policy-makers, disseminated in 2016 in European and National events and websites (European Culture Forum in Brussels, Structured Dialogue/Voices of culture meetings in Brussels, Creativity Week in Latvia…).


Member States expressed that although culture and education are the main means to tackle cultural awareness and expression, it is indeed a very wide-ranging topic, which concerns many policy sectors. This competence encompasses three major features:

  • art history and artistic skills
  • creativity and innovation
  • contribution to social cohesion and identity

    The latter being all the more crucial in a period in which openness, optimism and tolerance are placed under such strain in Europe.


    In 2016, following the adoption of the new European Skills Agenda, the Commission has launched a review of the Key Competences, including cultural awareness and expression.

Results expected through the implementation of the measure:

Implementation of the measure is hoped to result in positive impacts on society, in terms of social cohesion, citizenship, growth and cultural diversity

Financial resources allocated to implement the measure:

Hard to specify budget for policy work in this framework, but costs covered include staff time and experts' expenses for meetings.

Goal(s) of UNESCO's 2005 Convention
Cultural Domain(s)