Cultural policy

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Cultural policy is the government actions, laws and programs that regulate, protect, encourage and financially (or otherwise) support activities related to the arts and creative sectors, such as painting, sculpture, music, dance, literature, and filmmaking, among others and culture, which may involve activities related to language, heritage and diversity. The idea of cultural policy was developed at UNESCO in the 1960s. Generally, this involves governments setting in place processes, legal classifications, regulations, legislation and institutions (e.g., galleries, museums, libraries, opera houses, etc.) which promote and facilitate cultural diversity and creative expressions in a range of art forms and creative activities.

Cultural policies vary from one country to another, but generally they aim to improve the accessibility of arts and creative activities to citizens and promote the artistic, musical, ethnic, sociolinguistic, literary and other expressions of all people in a country.

In some countries, especially since the 1970s, there is an emphasis on supporting the culture of Indigenous peoples and marginalized communities and ensuring that cultural industries (e.g., filmmaking or TV production) are representative of a country’s diverse cultural heritage and ethnic and linguistic demographics.