Culture, Heritage and Diversity


Culture is an essential component and a key factor for the effective delivery of the core mission of the Council of Europe to promote human rights, the practice of democracy and the rule of law.
Promoting culture as the "soul of democracy" means advocating strong cultural policies and governance aimed at transparency, access and participation, and respect for identity and diversity, intercultural dialogue and cultural rights – as the basis for respectful and tolerant living together in an ever more complex world.
The Directorate’s work strengthens cultural co-operation within and across borders between different individuals and groups in a changing environment often marked by global interrelations to help prevent conflicts and tension at all levels of our societies. Therefore, cultural policies are constantly developed and through innovative action, turned into praxis by governments that take inspiration from the Council of Europe’s comprehensive approach of relating the development of policies and standards to capacity building and awareness raising activities.