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Cultural Policies for Diversity : Compendium

Introduction to the Public Forum "What Cultural Policies for Diversity?"

Cultural diversity is becoming more and more an issue in cultural policy making. In a broader perspective, policies and debates in this field often address:

*the cultural and linguistic background of arts or media professionals and of their work;
*the production, distribution, regulation and financing of cultural and mass-media content;
*practices or demands of increasingly diverse audiences; as well as
*efforts aimed at "intercultural dialogue".

The Council of Europe/ERICarts Compendium of Cultural Policies and Trends in Europe (www.culturalpolicies.net) has committed itself to monitoring international legal instruments as well as cultural policies and measures on the national and regional levels which aim at supporting cultural diversity. Compendium monitoring includes, but is not limited to:

*the implementation of the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions;
*laws and policies supporting national minority groups;
*the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages and related linguistic diversity policies or measures;
*pluralism in media programming, including film and book markets;
*policies and projects fostering gender equality and intercultural dialogue; and
*efforts to sustain, or enhance, artistic creativity and culturally diverse content production.

Reflecting the main mission of the Council of Europe, the Compendium information system has also become a place for debate on ethical and human rights issues in a cultural context.

On the occasion of the annual meeting of Compendium authors, editors and advisors in Zurich on the 9th and 10th of April 2010, we want to take the opportunity to discuss topics of cultural diversity and human/cultural rights in a Public Forum, where prominent experts from the host country participate and exchange with the Compendium "community of practice".

Switzerland, located at the crossroads of cultural and linguistic traditions, has important insights to contribute to the above issues. Swiss experience could play an important role in stimulating further debates on how to develop and sustain diversity-related cultural policies throughout Europe and beyond – which could then be reflected in future Compendium editions.

The newsletter from Compendium.

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