Democratic governance

We believe in diversity as a force for democracy and encourage dialogue as a means of building peace.


Our vision reflects the values of a democratic, dynamic, integrated and creative European society.


We strive towards a Europe where the diversity of cultures, the arts, and cultural and natural heritage are essential to the development of a genuine openness of mind and basic rights, and where open and interactive processes and practices of culture encompass different elements that combine to help us deal with the complexities of living with ourselves and one another. (more...)


Headline news ... (19/12/2014)


34th Standing Committee meeting of the Bern Convention

The Standing Committee met from 2 to 5 December in Strasbourg to monitor the implementation and the review of the Convention. The meeting was attended by delegations from 51 Contracting Parties, including the European Union, observer States, representatives of governmental and non-governmental organisations, international biodiversity conventions, agreements and programmes, as well as by independent experts. Over 130 participants were expected at this year’s meeting to discuss issues such as as invasive alien species, protected areas, illegal killing of birds, among others. The Committee also assessed the complaints submitted by citizens and NGOs for presumed breaches of the Convention by Contracting Parties. [08/12/2014]

Special file

Press release


European Academic Network on Romani Studies (RAN): Crime and Health seminar series

Two workshops organised in London on 3-4 December by Professor Margaret Greenfields from the Buckinghamshire New University in collaboration with the Centre for Rights, Equality and Diversity of the University of Warwick and the Lankelly Chase Foundation, addressed the issues of Roma in the criminal justice system and Health Issues for United Kingdom and European Roma communities. The event was part of a series of workshops funded by the RAN within the framework of the call for proposals for Bridging the Gap between Academia and Policy Makers. [08/12/2014]


13th Assembly of Compendium Experts

The 13th Assembly of Compendium Experts were held on 4-5 December at The Royal Academies for Science and the Arts of Belgium in Brussels under the Belgian Presidency of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe. It was attended by up to 100 specialists in culture; key players from cultural policy research and policy making, including Vice-President and Minister of Education, Culture and Childhood of The Federation Wallonia-Brussels, Joëlle Milquet. (more...) [08/12/2014]


Award Ceremony for the prizewinners of the XIXth International Heritage Photographic Experience “Landscape with its Heritage” (IHPE) The Award Ceremony for the prizewinners of the XIXth International Heritage Photographic Experience “Landscape with its Heritage” took place on 1 December 2014 in the Council of Europe (Room 1). Young people from several Member States of the Council of Europe and from Tunisia participated in this event. Supported by the Council of Europe, this initiative was launched in Spain by the Generalitat of Catalonia and takes place in the context of the activities within the European Landscape Convention. It helps young people to become familiar with the value of their landscapes and of the heritage within. [01/12/2014]



Reviewing cultural policy in Serbia

Upon request of the Minister of Culture of the Republic of Serbia, Mr Ivan Tasovac, a Council of Europe expert team met with national specialists on 12-13 November to jointly study the country’s cultural policy system, with a focus on the contemporary and performing arts sector. An analytical report with policy recommendations will become available in Spring 2015. [17/11/2014]

Cultural policy review programme

FOCUS: Cultural Heritage

HEREIN: 25 National Reports published

The active engagement of the National Coordinators has so far led to the publication of 25 heritage policy reports ( The Secretariat is in contact with a dozen other National Coordinators who are actively working on their reports. Participants in the 10th Annual Meeting of HEREIN National Coordinators meeting held in Mons, Belgium on 19-20 November 2014 agreed on a common “road map”, fixing as one of their objectives to publish or update all the national reports of the 41 participating countries by March 2015. [09/12/2014]


Video of the month
Stones that talk, a rehabilitation and education programme for stone structures

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