Why rethink cultural policy? On what basis? How should we go about this? The book Pistes pour refonder les politiques culturelles attempts to answer these questions as they pertain to cross-cultural issues. After a general introduction dedicated to culture, cultural policy, and the French Belgian community, author Alain de Wasseige suggests answers to 47 often controversial questions that he groups under seven major topics: cultural policy, institutional and political context, the economics of culture, populations, creative design, training in cultural trades, and culture & society.
The author begins by describing changes that have come about since the 70s and, using them as his starting point, he spends the rest of the book identifying goals to be reached and steps to be taken, all the while remaining aware of their dangers and potentially negative effects. Written during the French Community of Belgium’s Estates General on Culture, this book questions the evidence and attempts to rethink cultural policy at a time when the government hopes to get the sector back on its financial feet by injecting a part of the profits from its own (re)financing. Referring to institutions and regulations, the author writes, “We must dare to re-examine and question everything. We will be better able to tap potentials and intervene in abandoned fields and sectors. We will also conceive new forms of organization different from what we currently do.”