Cultural diversity

Publications and Studies

Conseil de l'Europe - Vers une stratégie transversale pour la promotion de la diversité culturelle. Rapport d'experts et document de travail – CC-Cult(2001)15

This report by the Council of Europe's Cultural Committee, an in-depth analysis of the perceived disparities between cultural policy measures and the rules on multilateral trade policy, aims to develop a strategy to help reconcile the issues of cultural diversity and international trade agreements, and specifically to raise awareness and shed light on cultural diversity and multilateral trade policy. Its main conclusions find that “the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) raises a whole series of questions and uncertainties related to the implementation of cultural policies and the elaboration of new cultural policy measures to deal with the development of the knowledge society and globalization. The fact that the current flexibility of GATS and the measures gradually introduced by the WTO in the sensitive areas of subsidies and domestic regulation has so far prevented any major complications in the field of cultural and audiovisual services is in no way—politically, or legally—a guarantee that the divergences between cultural policy and trade policy will not break down into a conflict.” The report also stresses the “importance of analyzing the different angles from which the issue of cultural diversity should be addressed to reveal its full implications at a time of accelerating globalization, and, if possible, of developing suggestions that may lead to concrete proposals,” notably in cooperation with the other appropriate organizations: UNESCO, the European Commission, WTO. (Available in French only)