29 May 2002
European cultural co-operation and the future role of the Assembly
Committee on Culture, Science and Education
Rapporteur : Mr Lluis Maria de Puig, Spain, Socialist Group
The new emphasis on intercultural relations, the forces of globalisation (through mass tourism or the new information technologies) and the enlargement of the European Union present new challenges for cultural co-operation. The Assembly addresses three questions: what is the role of cultural co-operation in Europe today? what is the role of the Council of Europe in that co-operation? and what is the role of the Assembly?
The answers lie in openness and interactivity rather than in institutional relations. Culture is understood in its broad sense to include the arts, heritage, media, science, education, youth and sport (but in no order of priority). There is a need for improving cultural co-operation not only within Europe but also between Europe and geographical areas that have historical cultural links with Europe. In addition culture (in its broad sense) must be made much more central to the long-term mission of the Council of Europe than it has become.
Cultural co-operation is linked to the central problems of society such as exclusion, it is a means of promoting tolerance and understanding, participation and respect for democratic values, as well as of preparing and improving the quality of life for every European.
I. Draft recommendation
1. The Assembly has followed closely the development of European cultural co-operation from its start in the Council of Europe. The present recommendation follows on from others and most recently from Recommendation 1265 (1995) on enlargement and European cultural co-operation and Recommendation 1299 (1996) on European cultural co-operation: activities of the European Union and relations with the Council of Europe.
2. In this context culture is used in its broad sense, to include the arts, heritage, media, science, education, youth and sport, but in no order of priority.
The new challenges
3. The Assembly wishes to recognise the central importance of European cultural co-operation and to reaffirm its own contribution to this co-operation in the Council of Europe at the present moment.
4. On the one hand the upsurge of international terrorism has led to a greater realisation of the political relevance of cultural values, intercultural dialogue, education and tolerance.
5. On the other hand globalisation, through for example mass tourism or the new information technologies, has placed new pressures on areas such as heritage or languages, or even on gastronomy, requiring new policies to integrate the cultural perspective into economic planning for sustainable development.
6. Furthermore, while the process of enlargement of the Council of Europe is nearing completion (and has already done so as regards the European Cultural Convention), the new process of enlargement of the European Union is only beginning, with potential risk for culture of a new dividing line in Europe.
7. There is therefore a perceived need for improving cultural co-operation not only within Europe (within the greater Europe) but also between Europe and neighbouring countries especially in geographical areas such as the Mediterranean that have historical cultural links with Europe.
8. Finally internal changes in the Council of Europe itself, notably the dissolution this year of the Council for Cultural Co-operation (Steering Committee for Cultural Co-operation), call for a new stocktaking of European cultural co-operation in which the Assembly should play a part.
The way forward
9. Education and culture should continue to remain central to the long-term mission of the Council of Europe. The Assembly can welcome the inclusion of the cultural dimension in several key declarations adopted recently by the highest authorities of the Council of Europe, notably in the two Summits of Vienna (1993) and of Strasbourg (1997) and in the Declaration for a Greater Europe without dividing lines, adopted by the Committee of Ministers in Budapest in 1999.
10. However the Assembly must regret that the importance of culture in the broad sense has not been reflected in the subsequent cuts in budget and personnel that have mainly affected those sectors of the organisation’s activity.
11. Culture re-emerges as the mainstay of multilateral co-operation, following readjustment with the emerging democracies in eastern and central Europe and despite the extent to which political conflict in certain areas continues to feed on cultural differences.
12. Much of proven value in the Council of Europe’s earlier work should be restated and repeated. For example permanent education, language and history learning, integrated conservation, youth participation, freedom of expression, tolerance, Sport for All, etc. Quality of life should be a shared objective throughout Europe. Cultural co-operation is a means of tackling the problem of exclusion in all its forms and should be pursued to the fullest extent. Education (formal and non-formal) remains the long-term key to economic, social and political progress as well as the basis for the development of the individual
13. Certain new priorities have emerged and new challenges. Values have to be constantly defined, whether this is to take into account new social political and economic circumstances or resist them. Management mantras of change for the sake of change should however be avoided.
14. The impact of the work of the organisation suffers chronically from lack of follow up. The general principles and the many related recommendations and other proposals that have been made must be more clearly articulated and presented so as to be effective locally and to be appreciated by the parliaments and governments of member states.
Assembly institutional (Council of Europe)
15. The Assembly believes that its own contribution to the work of the Council of the Europe is essentially one of initiation, of complementarity and interactivity. It proposes
i. to establish (where they do not yet exist) and to maintain active informal working relations at all levels in the Council of Europe structures (ministerial, specialised ministry representatives, Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, Ministers’ Deputies’ Rapporteur Groups, secretariat);
ii. to reduce in practice its own involvement in institutional activities (statutory meetings etc) and to replace this with regular and efficient briefing, with more politically relevant participation and with joint planning at all appropriate levels;
iii. to concentrate its own activities on selected priorities that complement what is done elsewhere in the organisation.
16. The Assembly has an external role to play. It will therefore aim
i. to promote co-operation in the cultural field between governmental and non-governmental organisations through national parliaments;
ii. to provide a forum for parliamentary debate on the cultural activities of those governmental organisations that do not have such a forum (Unesco and OECD);
iii. to encourage the participation of civil society and in particular of young people in the activity of the Council of Europe, without necessary recourse to formal structures.
Committee of Ministers and cultural co-operation
17. The Assembly recommends that the Committee of Ministers, on the institutional level :
i. review Assembly representation in steering committees and consider in particular whether it is appropriate to maintain full membership on committees set up on the basis of the European Cultural Convention;
ii. reintroduce where appropriate the practice of colloquies between parliamentarians and ministers at European conferences of specialised ministers;
iii. reconsider the Assembly’s earlier suggestion that the Committee of Ministers meet occasionally at the level of specialised ministers;
and more generally :
iv. give a higher priority to the promotion of European cultural co-operation throughout the many fields involved (including media) and to its integration in the main policy fields of the organisation as a whole and provide the appropriate resources and governmental coordination;
v. ensure that information on Council of Europe activity is made available for use nationally (in an appropriate form and language);
vi. pursue actively co-operation with other governmental organisations (Unesco, OECD etc) and with the European Union with a view to establishing effective partnerships and a better sharing of available resources;
vii. take the necessary steps so that the European Union becomes party to the European Cultural Convention (Council of Europe) and that the broader Europe is included in any arrangements for cultural co-operation envisaged by the European Convention (European Union);
viii. continue to associate civil society with these activities and in particular young people.
II. Explanatory memorandum by Mr de Puig
A. Introduction 5
B. A political history of European cultural co-operation 5
C. The position of the Assembly 7
D. Assessment of the past role of the Assembly 7
E. Implications for future Assembly interaction 8
F. Conclusions 11
1. Council of Europe committee structures 12
2. Assembly representation 13
3. Terms of reference of governmental committees 15
4. Current Assembly work programme 17
1. Part of the mandate of the Committee on Culture, Science and Education is to maintain a continuing overview of European cultural co-operation. A series of reports have been presented usually by the chair of the Committee and usually prompted by a significant change in the field. The latest reports were on enlargement (1995 by Mrs Fischer) and on the European Union (1996 Sir Russell Johnston). The present report pays specific attention to the new situation following two recent developments:
- the suppression in 2001 of the Cultural Fund and the subsequent replacement of the Council for Cultural Co-operation (CDCC) by a series of separate steering committees
- the amalgamation in January 2001 of the Assembly Committees on Science and Technology and on Culture and Education.
2. Culture for the purposes of this report is therefore to be understood in the broad sense including the arts, heritage, media, science, education, youth and sport (the order is immaterial).
3. This is also an occasion
- to re-assert the place of culture (in the broad sense) in the priorities of the organisation as a whole, and the Assembly in particular.
- to identify current priorities and work methods
4. One of the aims of provoking a debate is to encourage Assembly members to involve themselves in this field and contribute their own ideas for cultural co-operation.
B. A political history of European cultural co-operation in the Council of Europe
5. There are several accounts of the main trends in European cultural co-operation. See for example in Mrs Fischer’s report. In view of the recent developments a more political presentation is made here.
6. In political terms one could begin the story with the contrast between the uncertain political mission of the Council of Europe in 1949 (in the confusion between “unity” and “union”) and the relatively straightforward cultural objective (“safeguarding and realising the ideals and principles which are their common heritage”).
7. With the European Cultural Convention in 1954 a framework was set for the development of an area of cultural co-operation separate from membership of the Council of Europe and the necessary adhesion to its political principles (pluralist democracy and human rights). In this area co-operation was conducted for its own sake rather than for political ends.
8. The European Cultural Convention enabled contact to be established on an equal footing with countries unable or unwilling to join in the mainstream political co-operation. Thus all the Nordic countries were involved including Finland from 1970 (19 years before that country became a full member and a fact greatly appreciated by the Assembly at the time the Norwegian Mr Aano chaired the Committee on Culture and Education). Similarly most of the central and east European countries began co-operation with the West in the cultural area (before they were rushed into what appeared to some as premature membership of the Council of Europe). Youth co-operation was based on the same area and it was through contacts established with east European youth organisations that the Assembly had its first encounters beyond the Iron Curtain.
9. Tensions developed from the start between the two approaches, cultural co-operation for its own sake and for political ends. Clearly the Ministries of Foreign Affairs lacked enthusiasm to fund programmes devised by enthusiastic representatives of specialised ministries. But the series of specialised ministerial conferences nevertheless continued to back this approach.
10. In the Council of Europe itself the struggle was essentially between the Council for Cultural Co-operation (CCC) that managed the programme of cultural co-operation and the Committee of Ministers (of Foreign Affairs) that paid the bill. At one point (1976) the Committee of Ministers insisted on turning the Council for Cultural Co-operation into a standard steering committee under its authority as the “CDCC” (Comité Directeur pour la coopération culturelle) and abolished the subsidiary bodies with the exception of the Committee for Higher Education and Research. The conflict simmered on, with meetings registered under a double numbering system (CCC/CDCC). Cultural activities were marshalled under improbable political objectives. Very recently an apparently fatal coup was inflicted on the separatist existence of cultural co-operation by the abolition by the Committee of Ministers (ministers of foreign affairs) of the Cultural Fund (and Sports Fund) at the start of 2001. One argument was that membership of the Council of Europe was almost equal to that of the European Cultural Convention (exceptions being Belarus, Bosnia, Holy See, Monaco and Yugoslavia). The specialised ministries have now fought back and, with the suppression of the Council for Cultural Co-operation (over which the ministries of foreign affairs had retained some coordinating control, though not necessarily through the same channels as controlled the Committee of Ministers Deputies), are now beginning to flourish as separate steering committees (with specialised ministry representation). Ministry of foreign affairs control in this area continues however to be exercised through the budget and through the Ministers’ Deputies’ Rapporteur Group on Culture, one of several informal groups of “Rapporteurs” drawn from the permanent representations in Strasbourg.
11. In addition to multilateral co-operation (which was characteristic of cultural co-operation up to the late 80s), there has been a need to introduce programmes of assistance for the new member countries, especially those ravaged by conflicts. In the first instance these assistance and training programmes were introduced outside the area of cultural co-operation and under the direct control of either the Secretary General or the Committee of Ministers’ Deputies. These programmes went far beyond the cultural sector (human rights, legal and institutional reform etc). They also included the Democratic Leadership Programme (which the Assembly helped set up). With the structural reforms of 2001 all has now been handed to the respective steering committees. It seems that the Democratic Leadership Programme may now move from the political to the youth sector.
12. The result is a series of double mandates made up of both political and cultural objectives (see appendix 3).
13. Further changes have been the development of regional co-operation (South Eastern Europe, South Caucasus, Baltic), sometimes more for convenience than for relevance.
14. The resulting structure is 6 steering committees with membership based on the European Cultural Convention serviced by one Directorate General (DG IV) and followed by the Rapporteur Group on Culture.
15. There are a number of other intergovernmental activities in what the Assembly regards as the area of cultural co-operation but which fall outside the European Cultural Convention. Though aspects of the audiovisual are covered by the convention (cinema, creativity etc), the mass media themselves are handled in the context of human rights in the Steering Committee for Mass Media) with membership in principle limited to Council of Europe member states. Other Cultural Convention states participate as observers. The Steering Committee for Mass Media is served by a different secretariat (DG II) and a different Rapporteur Group (on Human Rights).
16. The membership of the Steering Committee on Bioethics is similarly limited to Council of Europe member States. It is served by secretariat from DG I and followed by the Rapporteur Group on Legal Affairs.
17. Finally, and sui generis, is the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) that was set up following the “All different – all equal” campaign.
18. Most recently multidisciplinary activities (integrated or transversal projects) are being introduced by the Secretary General.
19. These developments have complicated and confused European cultural co-operation. An assessment and a new start are necessary and probably long overdue.
C. The position of the Assembly on European cultural co-operation in the Council of Europe
20. As a full member of the Council for Cultural Co-operation (with 3 votes) the Assembly has occupied from the outset a ringside seat in most of these changes. For as long as political advantage favoured the additional benefits of broader contact on the basis of the European Cultural Convention, the Assembly has defended this basis. It has campaigned for resources and cooperated as closely as its own resources allowed in the intergovernmental programmes. Its own Museum Prize (set up in 1977) is based on the area of the European Cultural Convention. In the Committee on Culture and Education reviews of conservation legislation began in non-Council of Europe states on that basis (this committee being the first to venture into Romania and Slovenia – before everything changed with the outbreak of war in Yugoslavia).
21. In Recommendation 1216 (1993) the Assembly recognised the possibility of cultural co-operation both for its own sake and for political ends. The Assembly however remains suspicious of the misuse of culture for political ends. It has after all criticised the European Union for using sport as a means simply of promoting its own image rather than promoting sport.
22. On the contrary the Assembly (again through its Committee on Culture, Science and Education) has preferred to use political intervention for cultural ends. This is the role of the General Rapporteur for Cultural Heritage (currently focused on Cyprus, Ilisu Dam, the Romanian national treasure). It should also be the role of the General Rapporteur on Media questions although at present the hearings at committee level perform this function.
D. Assessment of the past role of the Assembly in the Council of Europe
23. Effective at moments, the Assembly has not been able to sustain on a regular basis its presence in European cultural co-operation. In terms of immediate impact and programme management, the Assembly involvement in the Council for Cultural Co-operation has become decreasingly significant since enlargement. We have lacked the resources to maintain presence. The planning processes for cultural co-operation were inevitably too long-term and cumbersome to enable reaction to political demands. Moreover there has often been opposition to Assembly involvement from parties interested in promoting other interests (eg illegal art trade, metal detecting, salvage), There has also been the confusion in overall control already mentioned. More recent insistence by the Committee of Ministers on politically oriented activities has not necessarily led to greater sensitivity towards Assembly proposals (for example follow up on Recommendation 1521 (2001) on Csango minority culture).
24. Nevertheless on many occasions, Assembly initiatives, or timely Assembly pressure, have been effective. Thus the Assembly has been credited with the launch of the European Youth Centre (and Foundation) and then the Budapest Centre; it is associated with the “sports for all” policy; it was fully involved on the European level in the series of cultural campaigns launched by the Council of Europe (European Architectural Heritage Year 1975, European Music Year 1985, European Cinema and Television Year 1988, European Youth Campaign against Racism and Intolerance 1995, European Year of Languages 2001); it has been behind the setting up of the governmental committees on mass media and on bioethics. The Assembly has also been effective in drawing attention to minority languages.
25. Less effective have been the interventions of Assembly members in support of Council of Europe initiatives in their own parliaments. But there is also a string of examples of support through parliamentary questions, letters to ministers and local initiatives in many states to the credit of our members.
E. Implications for future Assembly interaction
26. In general there is a need to maintain interactivity, develop understanding and ensure information flow. The value of complementarity should be recognised, but so too the independence of the Assembly and its specificity (to initiate, to support, but not to carry out programmes).
27. The Council of Europe structures have in the past presented an enormous potential for interactivity. This may take place between different areas of co-operation but more significantly between different levels – parliamentary, governmental (foreign affairs and specialised), regional and local, and non-governmental.
28. But the cost is considerable in terms of time, travel and persistence. Interactivity as such is exceedingly difficult to evaluate and so justify in “management” terms of cost-effectiveness.
29. Interactivity has become increasingly impracticable with enlargement. The problem is of numbers, but also of new attitudes and broader understanding. In the early stages of this there has been the difficulty of communication with the new countries that shared Russian as a common language for co-operation. But there are other bridges to build and over deeper divides.
30. To perform its proper role, the Assembly (members and secretariat) must remain independent. Information is essential. Only informed intervention can be justified and effective.
31. Complementarity is a valid option alongside interactivity (alternative words are partnership or synergy). It is particularly useful in a small organisation where resources are limited. Thus the Assembly can put emphasis on Bosnia and Herzegovina until the Council of Europe moves in and then change its attention to North Africa. It is also politically advantageous when certain issues may be awkward for intergovernmental bodies to tackle. This has been the case with regard to cultural heritage in northern Cyprus and contacts with Belarus governmental officials over media legislation.
32. Independence and initiative. The Assembly (and in this case its Committee on Culture, Science and Education) must after all retain the possibility of acting also on other fronts in its relations with other governmental and non-governmental organisations and on specific political issues in the cultural arena.
33. The Assembly has a right to initiate and make proposals formally within the Council of Europe structures. But the Assembly is not a governmental body. It is a political body composed of individual members. It should intervene in real time in real issues, but it is not operational, it does not have a programme to manage.
34. In fact there is a contradiction in the institutional presence of the Assembly inside the structures of governmental co-operation. In normal circumstances a clear distinction is made between executive and legislative bodies and this should be the case in the Council of Europe.
35. As matters stand problems can occur in two situations. (a) The normal procedure is for Assembly recommendations to be passed from the Assembly by the Committee of Ministers to the competent steering committees to prepare a reply. It is odd that the Assembly is itself represented (and is even a member) of that steering committee; (b) The Assembly is normally consulted on any draft conventions. What is the point if these texts are prepared in steering committees in which the Assembly is already represented? This question has already been raised with regard to the preparation of protocols to the bioethics convention.
36. The reason for the present situation is no doubt the fact that it was felt appropriate for the Assembly to be represented on the independent body administering the Cultural Fund and responsible for managing a programme of cultural co-operation independent of the Committee of Ministers. Now that the independence of that programme has largely disappeared, the institutional irregularity should perhaps be corrected.
37. The practical implications should be considered for each area of co-operation:
(a) Steering committees based on the European Cultural Convention
38. The question should be asked as to whether the Assembly wishes to maintain its own statutory representation at the present level with the right to vote.
39. In the past the feeling was that the Assembly had an obligation to be present in the innumerable and lengthy statutory meetings – otherwise there would be an empty chair. Too often the secretariat has been obliged to fill this seat. Should the situation be reversed and Assembly representation reserved for the exceptional occasion rather than the rule?
40. Attention might more usefully be paid to (a) better exchange of information and (b) more direct personal interaction. On this basis a selection can be made of where and when Assembly intervention will be most effective – whether in Strasbourg statutory meetings, or in international conferences or nationally.
41. Regular contact is certainly necessary at all levels. Access should always be possible where requested [though in sensitive cases only for specified agenda items]. Institutional membership would however best be brought to an end.
(b) Other steering committees and structures
42. Assembly representation is already optional on most of these other committees. The possibility exists for the Assembly to attend meetings (at its own expense) but without an obligation to do so. Several Assembly committees may be interested in the possibility of involvement depending on the subjects under discussion.
43. This is the case with the Steering Committee on Mass Media (of interest to the legal as well as cultural committees) and the Steering Committee on Bioethics (where the social, legal and scientific committees have been involved). The current levels of contact appear to be satisfactory (secretariat and occasional personal contact between parliamentarians and government representatives).
44. The case of the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance is different. It has had from the outset a particularly personalised approach in its work: the members are appointed by governments but not as government representatives and have tended to be permanent; its work is of a sensitive and confidential nature; it meets fairly frequently. The Assembly began with a generous presence of 3 members to reflect its previous interest in the subject and in assuring follow up to the campaign and these three members were also to be appointed on a permanent basis. The legal and political committees have maintained their representation.
45. In conclusion a working relationship similar to (a) above should be continued whereby no unnecessary obligations are imposed but access is [on specific issues] in principle welcomed.
(c) Specialised ministerial conferences
46. Special attention could be paid to the role of the Assembly in conferences of specialised ministers. At this level the Assembly can provide an appropriate institutional level for dialogue and also find a more appropriate political partner than in discussion with ministry representatives in the steering committees.
47. The manner of Assembly involvement can vary. In the past the Assembly committees have held colloquies with ministers on such occasions. Exceptionally, Lord Russell-Johnston chaired as Assembly President one session of the 2nd informal conference of ministers for education for South Eastern Europe. More often the Assembly representative has simply contributed a statement.
48. These conferences tend to be used to reinforce the activity of each organisation. Although the European Union has its own solution, OECD and Unesco have their own series of ministerial conferences. At one stage the Standing Conference of European Ministers of Education attempted to exercise an overview role, but this is now without much relevance outside the Council of Europe context. The Committee of Ministers could be asked to look further at this matter.
(d) Congress of Local and Regional Authorities (CLRAE)
49. The CLRAE faces a similar problem as the Assembly. It is being encouraged to play a closer role in governmental co-operation in the cultural field. This results in part from the increasing interest in regional co-operation, but is also linked to the reality of the implementation of cultural policies (as this is more often funded on the local level than national). The CLRAE has only recently reestablished its Committee for Culture and Education. In the recent structural changes the CLRAE has been raised to the same position as the Assembly in all steering committees operating under the European Cultural Convention.
50. This is the moment to begin reconsideration of working relations with the Assembly. Past areas of co-operation have been in the fields of cultural heritage (Historic Towns Forum), minority and regional languages (Charter). Current subjects of common interest also include youth participation and co-operation with the North-South Centre.
(e) Committee of Ministers and Rapporteur Groups
51. Despite its close involvement in many of the intergovernmental committees dealing with cultural issues, the Assembly Committee on Culture, Science and Education has no special relations with the Committee of Ministers in the field. On one occasion the chairman of the committee, Mr Müller, addressed the Committee of Ministers’ Deputies. On frequent occasions however parliamentary questions have been put to the Committee of Ministers (written or oral) on cultural issues. In this sense the cultural sector has been no different from others.
52. On the other hand the Assembly has asked the Committee of Ministers to consider sitting occasionally at the level of specialised ministers to consider cultural questions.
53. A recent development of interest is is the possibility of interaction with the Rapporteur Groups working on cultural matters. As already indicated these are informal groups drawn from the permanent representations in Strasbourg and used to help prepare decisions of the Ministers’ Deputies. The particular relevance of the Rapporteur Group on Culture is that it has now taken the place of the Council for Cultural Co-operation as the sole coordinating body for governmental activities under the European Cultural Convention.
54. The Assembly through its Committee on Culture, Science and Education has ongoing contact with the chair of Rapporteur Group on Culture. There is mutual recognition of the respective parliamentary and diplomatic roles but a common concern to mobilise support for the cultural sector that is currently so much overlooked at the political level in the Council of Europe. Greater understanding through contacts on Rapporteur Group level might be helpful. But care must be taken (a) not to reproduce the same institutional contradiction that we are seeking to escape from (b) not to replace the Committee of Ministers (of Foreign Affairs) or specialised ministers by the Rapporteur Group (of Ambassadors) and (c) not to place any further burden on the committee secretariat. Other rapporteur groups are also relevant.
(f) Outside the Council of Europe
55. The Assembly (of national parliamentarians) should also pay attention to other governmental organisations in the cultural field (Unesco, OECD, European Union) that do not have representation from national parliaments.
56. The main question here is how effectively is the repartition of tasks coordinated between the international governmental organisations (by governments and by the organisations themselves)?
57. Our Committee attempts to follow these issues as well as to focus from time to time on the activities of the individual bodies. Follow up needs now to be given to the proposal for concertation with Unesco and OECD on education policies.
58. New moves should be made towards the European Parliament following the changes in committee chairs.
(g) Non-governmental organisations
59. The Committee on Culture, Science and Education, as other Assembly committees, is in touch with the main non-governmental organisations. These contacts in our case are not institutionalised. No non-governmental organisation has a right to attend committee meetings. The relationships reflect circumstances and the nature of the bodies concerned whether on a regular basis (as with Europa Nostra or the European Museum Forum) or on an ad hoc basis for the preparation of specific reports.
60. On balance we have found non-governmental organisations an indispensable inspiration to our activities as also a necessary outlet for the results of what we and the Council of Europe is doing. On the other hand it is always necessary to be on guard against special pleading and political lobbyists and we have not institutionalised our committee’s relations with them.
61. European cultural co-operation has undergone a period of near extinction. Following the collapse of communism in eastern and central Europe, assistance programmes replaced multilateral co-operation. Cultural differences became targets in internal European civil wars. Globalisation has emerged as another threat to cultural diversity. The European Union is introducing a second dividing line and one which enlargement does not make any less real.
62. The moment has now come for the Council of Europe to reassert its role in encouraging multilateral cultural co-operation in combination with its political values of democracy and human rights. The Assembly must seek to play a meaningful part in developing appropriate structures, strategies and activities for the greater Europe.
Appendix 1 : Council of Europe committee structures
COMMITTEE OF MINISTERS
of Foreign Affairs
Committee on Culture
Science and Education
Committee on Culture and Education
European Cultural Convention
CDBI Steering Committee on Bioethics
CDCULT Steering Committee for Culture
CDDS Steering Committee for the Development of Sport
CDED Steering Committee for Education
CDEJ European Steering Committee for Youth
CDESR Steering Committee for Higher Education and Research
CDMM Steering Committee on the Mass Media
CDPAT Steering Committee for Cultural Heritage
CLRAE Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe
ECRI European Commission against Racism and Intolerance
Appendix 2 : Assembly Representation
COUNCIL OF EUROPE BODIES
• Intergovermental – annual statutory meetings
Following the disappearance of the CDCC in 2001, the Assembly is represented, with the right to vote, but at its own expense (except for CDESR)
CDESR (with expenses borne by the Council of Europe budget DGIV)
Assembly represented, without right to vote, expenses borne by DGIV
CDDS one representative (normally designated by Sub-Committee on Youth and Sport)
Assembly represented, without right to vote, and at its own expense
CDBI and very occasionally working groups
CDEJ (and Advisory Council) observer status
CDMM (cultural and legal committees) and certain working groups
ECRI (cultural, legal and political committees)
• Intergovernmental conferences of the above - on an ad hoc basis at own expense
• Specialised ministerial conferences – varies between individual representatives and sub-committees (standing or ad hoc)
• Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe – representation on an ad hoc basis at own expense
• Rapporteur Groups of Ministers Deputies - no representation at present; occasional reciprocal visits of chairpersons
• Committee for Works of Art of the Ministers’ Deputies - since at least 1997 the Assembly has been represented by the Chair of the Committee on Culture (Science) and Education and the Rapporteur on the European museum awards
COUNCIL OF EUROPE RELATED BODIES
• FEMP (heritage crafts) – in practice by the Chair of the Sub Committee on Cultural Heritage (This used to be Pro Venetia Viva. The President is Baroness Hooper who has recently returned to the Assembly. The whole future of FEMP is under review)
• IEICL (cultural itineraries) – The Committee on Culture, Science and Education has been asked by the Bureau to designate a representative to the Governing Board (Mr Lemoine)
• North South Centre – two parliamentarians designated by the Assembly (currently members of the cultural and economic committees possibly with local substitutes): CM Res (93) 51
• Europa Nostra (Council) - co-opted members (usually Chair of Sub Committee on Cultural Heritage and/or General Rapporteur)
• European Museum Forum - ad hoc basis to seminars and ceremonies (usually Rapporteur on European Museum Awards)
• European Cultural Foundation (Board of Governors) - Chair of Committee on Culture, Science and Education (ex officio) often replaced by local Dutch member for AGM in Amsterdam
• European Science Foundation – (Secretary General of the Council of Europe ex officio) Assembly represented on ad hoc basis in AGM
• European Parliamentary Technology Assessment (EPTA) - ad hoc representation (observer)
Appendix 3 : Terms of reference of Council of Europe governmental committees
STEERING COMMITTEE ON BIOETHICS (CDBI)
i. to study the set of problems posed for law, ethics and human rights by progress in the biomedical sciences, in particular in the light of Parliamentary Assembly Recommendations 934 (1982), 1046 (1986), and 1160 (1991); of the work of the 1st European Ministerial Conference on Human Rights (Vienna, 19-20 March 1985), and of informal meetings of European Ministers of Justice (Edinburgh, 14 June 1985; Ottawa, 17-19 June 1991);
ii. to work with a view to harmonising the policies of member States as far as possible and, if necessary, framing appropriate legal instruments; particularly to prepare additional protocols to the Convention on human rights and biomedicine (ETS No. 164) on ethical and legal questions related to:
1. organ transplantation
2. medical research
3. protection of the human embryo and foetus
4. human genetics
5. human cloning
STEERING COMMITTEE FOR CULTURE (CDCULT)
The Committee shall draw up guidelines for the programme of activities which it shall submit to the Committee of Ministers through the Secretary General. Its proposals will focus, in particular, on:
- activities to sustain democracy and civil society;
- activities to promote cultural diversity;
- cultural policy review which promotes the international exchange of strategies and good practice;
- activities aimed at conflict prevention and sustainable development.
COMMITTEE FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF SPORT (CDDS)
- to stimulate and provide the co-ordination of sports policies within the States party to the European Cultural Convention, notably, with a view to making the safe practice of an ethical sport as widely available as possible;
- to develop common European policies where appropriate on questions of international sport
STEERING COMMITTEE FOR EDUCATION (CDED)
The Committee shall draw up guidelines for the programme of activities which it shall submit to the Committee of Ministers through the Secretary General. Its proposals will focus in particular on:
- education policy strategies and reforms relating to topical issues and longer-term prospects;
- building a democratic, caring and pluralist society and fostering mutual understanding between people.
EUROPEAN STEERING COMMITTEE FOR YOUTH (CDEJ)
The CDEJ shall:
i. be responsible for carrying out the analysis of national youth policies in Europe, in particular on matters related to the situation of young people in society, which could be the object of joint action by governments;
ii. stimulate co-operation and exchange of information and experiences among member States, with the aim of providing competent national authorities with means of following developments in youth affairs in the States Parties to the Cultural Convention, taking account of the work of other intergovernmental organisations and institutions
STEERING COMMITTEE FOR HIGHER EDUCATION AND RESEARCH (CDESR)
The Committee shall draw up the orientations for a programme of activities which it shall submit to the Committee of Ministers through the Secretary General. Its proposals will focus in particular on:
- the development of European higher education and research on the basis of common democratic principles and of the values of the European university heritage, including the freedoms of learning, teaching and research, and the self-government of academic institutions within a democratic society;
- building a democratic, cohesive and pluralist society and in developing a mutual understanding between peoples.
STEERING COMMITTEE ON THE MASS MEDIA (CDMM)
i. develop European co-operation on means of public communication with a view to further enhancing freedom of expression and information in a pluralistic democratic society, as well as the free flow of information and ideas across frontiers, and to fostering a plurality of independent and autonomous means of public communication reflecting a diversity of opinions and cultures ;
ii. to this effect, work out concerted European policy measures and appropriate legal and other instruments to address the issues raised notably by the functioning of means of public communication in a democratic society, in particular their impact on human rights and democratic values, as a result of the progressive disappearance of technological boundaries between broadcasting, telecommunications and informatics, while bearing in mind the need to develop activities which advance the goals of democratic security and cultural cohesion and pluralism in a pan-European perspective.
STEERING COMMITTEE FOR CULTURAL HERITAGE (CDPAT)
The Committee shall draw up guidelines for the programme of activities which it will submit to the Committee of Ministers through the Secretary General. Its proposals specifically concern:
- the contribution of cultural heritage towards the creation of a democratic sphere based on mutual recognition of the various cultural traditions co-existing in Europe and the realisation of common values and shared ideals;
- the consideration of values related to heritage in the evolution of European society and their contribution to a more coherent and united society;
- the evolution of conservation and enhancement methods of heritage within the context of the information society and in view of sustainable development.
Appendix 4 : Current Assembly work programme in the cultural field
(a) culture (general, creativity, the arts)
Specific reports being prepared on
- cultural situation in the South Caucasus
- Kurdish culture
- culture of diasporas
- co-operation with South Mediterranean countries (colloquy)
- cultural tourism
- minority languages and cultures (survival)
- religion and democracy
- quality of life
Specific reports being prepared on
- the education of refugees and displaced persons
- preparation for life
- religious education (new)
- teacher and parents
- non-formal influences
(c) culture (heritage)
Specific reports being prepared on
- tax incentives to conservation
- spirit of Europe in museums
- art history
- illegal trade
- European museum awards
- Specific issues with political dimension (General Rapporteur)
Specific reports being prepared on
- situation in countries (hearings)
On amalgamation in January 2001, some activities of the Science and Technology Committee were immediately distributed to other committees where they more naturally belonged (thus energy and transport to the Committee on Economic Affairs and Development and agricultural questions to the Committee on the Environment). Uncertainty surrounds the field of bioethics in which the Committee on Legal Affairs and the Committee on Social and Health Affairs were also involved (in fact the latest protocol was transmitted for report to the social committee). Priority was given in the course of 2001 to the finalisation and debate of certain science and technology reports that had been hanging over for some time (thus the follow up to the Gdansk conference and the hearing on scientific media). A number of reports that had been scheduled for the Standing Committee were grouped to enable presentation in plenary in September 2001.
Specific reports being prepared on
- science and public health
- precautionary principle
The key areas of ongoing concern are
- information of MPs on scientific issues
- imbalances in the wider European area
- education (basic science and new information technologies)
- political, ethical and commercial aspects of scientific research and applications
- opinions on protocols to the bioethics convention (stand-by)
Specific reports being prepared on
- youth policies in the Council of Europe
On going concerns
- youth participation
- young political leaders
Specific reports being prepared on
- European sports co-operation
On going concerns
- Doping and over training
Reporting committee: Committee on Culture, Science and Education
Reference to committee: Standing mandate
Draft recommendation adopted unanimously by the committee on 23 May 2002
Members of the committee: MM. de Puig (Chairman), Saglam, Baroness Hooper (alternate: Walter), MM. Prisacaru (Vice-Persons), Akhvlediani, Asciak, Bajrami, Banks, Barbieri, Berceanu (alternate: Baciu), Berzinš, Billing, Birraux, Mrs Castro, MM. Chaklein, Cherribi, Mrs Cryer, MM. Cubreacov, Dalgaard, Mrs Damanaki, Mrs Delvaux-Stehres, MM. Dias, Duka-Zólyomi, Felici, Mrs Fernández-Capel (alternate: Mrs Agudo), MM. Gadzinowski, Galoyan, Gentil, Gierek (alternate: Podgorski), Goris, Haraldsson, Hegyi, Higgins (alternate: Kiely), Ianuzzi, Irmer, Mrs Isohookana-Asunmaa, MM. Jakic, Kalkan, Mrs Katseli, Mrs Klaar, Mrs Kutraité Giedraitiené, MM. Lachat, Legendre, Lekberg, Lemoine, Lengagne, Libicki, Mrs Lucyga, MM. Maass, Malgieri, Marmazov, Marxer, Mateju (alternate: Mrs Stepova), Mrs Melandri, MM. Melnikov, Mestan, Mrs Milotinova, M. Nagy, Mrs Nemcova, MM. Nigmatulin, O’Hara, Mrs Pintat Rossell, MM. Rakhansky, Roseta, Schellens, Mrs Schicker, MM. Schweitzer, Seyidov, Mrs Skarbovik, MM. Sudarenkov, Symonenko, Theodorou, Torbar, Tudor, Vakilov, Valk, Wodarg, Yürür.
N.B. The names of those present at the meeting are printed in italics
Head of Secretariat: Mr Grayson,
Secretaries to the committee: Mr Ary, Mme Theophilova, Mr Torcatoriu